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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Target People Image copy

http://www.forbes.com/sites/mikemyatt/2012/12/13/10-reasons-your-top-talent-will-leave-you/ As referenced by the article in Forbes, 10 Reasons Your Top Talent Will Leave You, “Few things in business are as costly and disruptive as unexpected talent departures”. In 2014, organizations need to look for new and unique ways to engage, develop and inspire their Talent. The most successful growth oriented companies recognize that people drive the success and /or failure of an organization, so investing in their people is essential. It is important to mention that increasing salary and/or benefits is one way to motivate and engage employees but is rarely enough to retain them long term. Organizations need to not only provide competitive salaries and benefits, but they need to provide better tools to help their employees take ownership and drive their own careers and create transparency in the process of internal mobility. With the cost of replacing employees ranging between 30 percent and 300 percent of…

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War on talent

Most companies recognize the value in attracting and retaining the right employees. With growth projections for the US workforce of 4.4% from 2013-2017, it is also predicted that there will be accelerated turnover in many organizations.  Employees are expensive to attract and train, so losing employees to competitors can prove very costly. Accordingly, it makes sense for companies to have clear strategies to retain valued employees, by providing them with the information and tools they need to continue to grow – both in terms of their skill sets and their career progression. Clearly the more skills an employee has, the more valuable and attractive they are to both your organization and your competitors’ organizations. Whilst there is a lot of discussion about “Talent Management”, this all-encompassing term covers many different components of attracting, developing and managing employees.  “Career Management” or “Career Development” more specifically covers the steps an employee needs…

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No return

We frequently hear about the importance of a Return on Investment (ROI) to justify a decision being made to proceed down a certain path, especially when implementing a new technology. Clearly there are some systems for which there’s a clear ROI, such as replacing a completely manual process with an automated system (that may actually replace a person or people), or replacing existing training with an equivalent that’s cheaper. However, how many companies end up not implementing an innovative technology that may result in huge benefits, because they can’t assign an exact dollar value to that implementation? The areas in which a system may add value or benefits may be clear, but assigning a monetary value to that benefit may not be. For example, you might assume that a new applicant tracking system that automates and innovates some processes will add value, but how many of the efficiency improvements are…

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learners

Last week I attended Corporate Learning Week in Orlando. I attended a number of interesting sessions about how to engage employees and innovate the learning process and also spoke to many executives about learning practices and initiatives in their organizations. What was clear was that there is not a shortage of learning content out there, in all sorts of different formats, but many organizations struggle with finding the best way to deliver (and encourage) learning in order to engage their employees. Recent blog posts  by Jane Hart and Norene Wiesen on unwilling learners and how people learn through explaining their thinking respectively make it clear that different learning approaches work for different people, but employees need to understand the motivation for learning. When learners are directed to consume training content, they’re often doing it because they know they have to do it to tick a box, rather than because they…

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contract-management

In most organizations, HR has come a long way since the filing cabinets stuffed full of employee resumes, appraisals etc., but many systems in place today are legacy systems that simply transferred those paper processes onto a computer.  Hiring decisions may have been made based on these files, but often in isolation from any other information used by HR. For a long time job roles have been defined by HR leaders and managers to define the “ideal” profile and skill-set for particular role, but this has often been built on assumptions based on past profiles, rather than applying any serious analysis to it. The transparency revolution has greatly increased the amount of information easily available on employees and candidates, with sites like LinkedIn having millions of detailed profiles that are largely publicly searchable, so there’s plenty of data out there to start analyzing. This makes it all the more surprising…

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BNP_Paribas_London_Trading_Floor

Here’s an interesting headline: Regulators Ask Humans How to Deal With Robot Traders Looks like the robot takeover is proceeding exactly as we predicted. There are just a few little bumps in the road we have to look out for. The rules have, historically, been mostly about preventing people from ripping each other off in ways that were deemed unsporting (insider trading, outright fraud, etc.). Even this wasn’t always necessary: Plenty of unsporting practices have, historically, been punished not with CFTC sanctions but with everybody refusing to trade with you because you’re a jerk. But a market dominated by computers looks a bit different. They’re so fast, and they’re all programmed by like the same 12 guys using the same mathematical models, and they have no emotional intelligence. So much more so than with humans, there’s an alarming chance they’ll all think and do the same thing.** If that thing…

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assembly_line

Michael O. Church takes a look at the world of work and finds a problem potentially as dangerous as the scourge of automation that we have been dutifully tracking here over the past couple of years. In fact, it goes hand in hand with automation to produce an even bleaker outlook than just looking at automation will provide. Per Church, the problem is an employment culture focused on subordination (linked item is not entirely safe for work due to language in the title, and may be offensive to some because of same repeated throughout): Workplace subordination, in the 19th century and the first half of the 20th, had major operational efficiencies. Additionally, the destruction it inflicted on human capital was there for poets and philosophers to observe and mourn, but it never threatened to cripple the economy, because its standardization effects outweighed its costs. Assembly-line workers, in truth, didn’t need…

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oldguycallme

Writing at IT World, Eric Bloom has some suggestions for Generation Y employees to help them get noticed by (and possibly make some inroads with) their generation X and Baby Boomer co-workers / superiors. Bloom is very careful to point out how distasteful stereotypes are and makes some seemingly innocuous suggestions: Use the phone Spell words out Be a bit more formal in emails Work hard  None of this is offered as “We need to get things back the way they used to be,” but rather “these are good behaviors to display to a few key individuals in your organization.” What I find most interesting are some of the responses (apparently) from Gen Y readers of the piece: — Speak on Phone – Good luck. Just as you wouldn’t like using text when youstarted out, they don’t like making phone calls. Their numbers are too big and their generation’s preferred…

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economix-unemployment-blog480

At the New York Times Economix blog,  David Leonhardt explores what he calls The Great Shift, which is pretty well summed up by the two charts shown here. We have covered this before but it bears repeating. A change in unemployment rate doesn’t tell you much if the overall working population is changing, too. The decrease in unemployment we are witnessing is more than offset by the size of the labor force. This means that there are fewer people who are “unemployed” and yet no there are no additional people with jobs. The number of people who have a job has remained fairly consistent over the past five years. Leonhardt looks at various possible explanations: a skills gap, weak economic growth, more people on disability, but none of these seem particularly satisfactory explanations. (That last one is probably more a symptom of chronic unemployment than a cause.)   The factor…

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