Last week, Towers Watson’s Global Workforce Study reported that Career Management Programs are missing the mark, with many employees feeling that their companies are not adequately supporting or providing visibility of career development opportunities. It seems strange that many organizations report challenges around staff retention, but are not helping employees to identify opportunities to develop their skills and careers within the organization. The result is that, often after significant investment in training, companies are losing valuable employees to competitors. Often it’s not until the employee hands in their notice to leave that their managers express surprise and say they were going to be earmarked for a promotion some time soon. Technology enables us to make so many processes at work more efficient and transparent, but career management initiatives are often antiquated and secretive, being managed as succession planning initiatives that are often invisible to the employees, who feel they’re not…

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A recent survey finds that HR spending is on the rise for the first time since 2011. A new report by professional services company, Tower Watson, shows that companies are investing more money in human resource (HR) this year than they have since 2011. According to the survey the top three areas that companies are spending money are on talent management, HR data and analytics, and integrated talent management and compensation. Towers Watson found that HR technology spending continues to be strong, in spite of cost reductions in other parts of organizations. They believe this reflects an understanding that technology is a large and increasingly important driver of HR effectiveness and efficiency. It is no surprise then, that more and more progressive companies are turning to innovative and game changing HR technology like SkillsMapper that engages employees in the HR management process and provides companies insight into the skills and…

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Engage Retain

http://www.astd.org/Publications/Blogs/Management-Blog/2014/04/Engaging-Environments-Retain-Workers In the article “Engaging Environments Retain Workers”, written by Michelle Kozin on the ASTD, she points out that “talent focused companies” need to gain “insight into the motivational drives and innate needs of current and prospective employees.” It is my opinion that in order for companies to become progressive and innovative they must drive a stronger connection between the needs, interests, motivations and aspirations of their employees and the opportunities that exist inside the company. In Michelle Kozin’s article, she mentions some best practices for companies to consider in order to engage and retain employees: 1. “Build Awareness First”; 2. “Provide Opportunity”; 3. “Maximize ‘Employee Embeddedness’”. Employers need to have a way to support employees in their own careers and development, while also creating an environment where there is transparency and visibility. The most engaged employees understand where they are inside an organization, what they need to do in…

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We’ve all read plenty of resumes or profiles that state that the person in question is “results-oriented”  or “driven”. Various popular buzzwords come up from time to time and many people litter them throughout their resumes in the hope that this will help them get picked up by automated systems scanning for the ideal candidate. The reality is that the next step in the process is a human being checking through the recommended profiles, and when they see the same thing on every resume they read, they desperately hope to come across something more insightful and interesting. Whilst it’s important to tailor cover letters to make sure that you understand what it is about the role you’re applying for that you’re interested in, I’ve always found it interesting that people are advised to have different versions of their resume for different types of job they’re applying for. After all, isn’t…

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Believe it or not, sometimes, “Wow, you’re brilliant!” is the wrong thing to say.          Praise motivates. Praise encourages. Praise inspires. Sometimes. According to Inc. Magazine Contributor Jeff Hadden, depending on the approach you take, praising an employee can actually have the opposite effect. The difference lies in whether we assume skill is based on innate ability or on hard work and effort. Put another way, are people born with certain talents, or can talent be developed? Jeff seems to believe they can be developed. In his article, Jeff looks into two types of mental approaches to talent that according to research on achievement and success by Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck, people tend to embrace: Fixed mindset or growth mindset. Fixed mindset: The belief that intelligence, ability, and skill are inborn and relatively fixed–we “have” what we were born with. People with a fixed mindset typically say things like “I’m just not…

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Contrary to what many people think, a leader is not someone who creates followers. Instead, as my mother puts it, a true leader is someone who creates new leaders. Leadership comes in many forms. You don’t have to be on the organization’s executive team to be a leader.  According to Tony Robbins, “A leader is someone who inspires others to become more of who they truly are. They bring out the greatness that lies within each human being, and enables individuals to put that greatness into practice consistently. Leaders inspire themselves and others to do, be, give, and become more than they ever thought possible, thereby creating more leaders in the process.” Today, more than ever, there is a need for true leadership in the workplace in order to build high performing organizations with committed employees, loyal customers and followers, and increased performance and sustainability.  Below, are several leadership qualities…

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    http://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesinsights/2013/04/24/essential-tools-of-talent-management/     In the Forbes Insights Article, Bill Millar points out that tools for Talent Management are essential in understand how to strategically manage your internal talent. Companies today recognize the need for managing talent but are often late in establishing tools and processes to drive efficiencies. Companies need to recognize that their systems, processes and tools are not effective in engaging talent, building career paths, mapping skills to job roles, identify talent trends/metrics and targeting effective training and development. At the end of the day, company executives recognize the need and goals of inspiring, engaging, empowering and developing employees/talent, but have been hesitant to invest in effective tools to accomplish these critical talent goals. Imagine a tool that can engage employees to drive and take ownership of their own career, identify how their skills, competencies, experience and education map to job roles, establish more realistic career…

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Snakes and ladders

When considering career development, typically people think about moving up the career ladder, suggesting that the only way to improve yourself is to move up the hierarchy within your organization. In reality, though, not everyone wants to take on a more senior role within their organization. There are plenty of salespeople, for example, who are not interested in (and should, in fact, be actively discouraged from!) becoming sales managers. Being good at sales doesn’t mean you’re necessarily going to be good at managing people, so perhaps a salesperson’s career path should be more about adding and refining the skills that will help them to sell even more. The right path for one person is not necessarily the right one for their colleague, so development plans should be tailored for individual employees to help them be the best they can be in their current and target roles, without pushing them in…

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We have great news to share! Zapoint has been named one of Boston Business Journal’s fastest-growing private companies in Massachusetts!  We are extremely proud of this recognition made possible by our exceptional team at Zapoint. This year’s list includes 70 privately held businesses that recorded the state’s fastest revenue growth from 2010 through 2013. To be considered, companies needed a baseline of $1 million in revenue for 2013. Read the full article here.    Read More…

The quality of the talent within an organization and the ability to retain that talent provides corporations a powerful competitive advantage. Additionally, research shows that well‐trained employees are more productive, more engaged and remain loyal to the company. Therefore, it is no surprise that companies devote a lot of time, effort and money to corporate learning. According to the American Society for Training and Development, U.S. firms spent about $156 billion on employee learning and development in 2011. Although most organizations have internal training programs, for those who rely on external providers, formal training is costly and typically requires paid time off for the employee. More and more companies are utilizing online learning as a cost-effective alternative to traditional training programs for its flexible schedule, easy access to courses and more time efficient way for employees to expand their skills and knowledge. However, despite the focus on training, most companies…

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