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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Hidden Benefits of Giving Recognition Instead of Receiving It

By  Gary Beckstrand, Vice President at O.C. Tanner

The benefits of feeling appreciated and recognized at work are routinely examined in studies, but it’s not often that people examine how recognizing employees affects the giver. Is there more to be gained from recognition than just receiving it?

Recently, my company, O.C. Tanner, conducted a survey of more than 3,400 working professionals from countries around the world to explore how giving recognition in the workplace impacts the giver and, in turn, overall company culture—specifically from an employee’s perspective.

Millennials Love It

We found that employees who frequently give recognition feel more confident and are more driven and dedicated to the success of their organization. This is especially true of millennial workers. According to our survey, four out of five employees say that recognizing someone else¹s achievements makes them want to work harder, and millennials said this most often. Although it has been reported that millennials crave instant recognition for themselves, 85 percent of millennials also feed off of recognizing others.

Those Who Recognize Do Better Work 

What’s more, people who give recognition are more motivated in their jobs, are more confident in what they produce, and feel like they do better work. From our findings, 90 percent of employees who said they ‘always’ give recognition to employees feel that their work in the past 12 months has represented significant innovations when compared to the norm. The percentage goes down as frequency of giving goes down.

Still, People Are Hesitant 

Some people don’t give recognition because they don’t feel they’re in a position to do so in their office. The study also found that one in five employees don’t feel empowered to give recognition at work. Management can address this hesitation by promoting a culture that encourages recognition from every employee, regardless of position or tenure.

Although frontline employees may feel like it’s not their place to give recognition, it’s in an organization’s best interest to do what it can to dispel that perception. Encouraging cross-level recognition doesn’t require large expenditures—team members can simply tell their coworkers that they recognize and appreciate their work.

Promoting Giving 

Changing the focus from receiving to giving recognition may actually enhance employee engagement and an elevated workplace culture faster. Individuals are likely to have fewer opportunities to receive recognition than they do to give recognition. In other words, an employee does not have to wait to receive in order to gain all the benefits of recognition. It may indeed, be better to give than to receive.

The gains of giving recognition are clear, and organizations should reevaluate how they can better nurture a culture that fosters recognition, not just for the recipients’ sake, but also for those giving it.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

How the Gender Pay Gap Impacts Business Performance

By Jade Makana, Director of Content at PayScale

The good news is that PayScale’s most recent gender wage research found that the pay gap between men and women is shrinking. The bad news is these improvements are miniscule.

The Data Doesn't Lie

The uncontrolled pay gap—which looks at the median salary for all men and women, regardless of job type or worker seniority—showed that in 2015, women made 74 cents for every dollar earned by men. This year, women made 76 cents when compared to each dollar a man earned. Additionally, when the data controls for factors like job title, job level, years of experience and other important influencers of wages, women now make 98 cents for every dollar earned by men, as opposed to 97 cents last year.

Although the difference in wages may sound small (i.e. why squabble over a few pennies?), it all adds up. For a man making $50k a year, the gap means a woman will make one $1k less annually for the same job. Or for a man making $100k per year, a woman will earn $2k a year less. And unfortunately, it's not even worth comparing jobs for men and women earning $200k per year because there are so few women in this wage bracket.

The gender data goes on to tell a deeper, more concerning story. Men aren’t just getting more pay—they are also getting more promotions and advanced titles. In fact, men are 85 percent more likely than women to be a vice president or executive by their mid-career and 171 percent more likely than a female to hold such a position late in their career. So, men are not only earning more pay, but also experiencing higher levels of autonomy, power, and decision-making, all of which negatively impact women’s engagement and earning potential in the workplace.

Why It Matters

Why should this matter to business owners? Because we’ve learned that greater gender diversity actually correlates to better business performance. A McKinsey study titled "Women Matter: Gender Diversity, a Corporate Performance Driver," found that companies with a higher proportion of women in leadership positions had stronger financial performances. More specifically, companies with a greater proportion of female leaders saw a 48 percent higher operating profit, a 10 percent higher return on equity (ROE), and a 1.7 percent growth in stock price.

Gender equity also impacts employee engagement and retention for both genders. PayScale research found that when employees believe their employer is taking no action to address gender inequity, 71 percent of women and 74 percent of men said they plan to find a new job within six months. Gender equity is becoming an urgent business matter because employers understand that it impacts retention of top talent, overall business performance, and—ultimately—the bottom line.

Taking Action

While most organizations do not intentionally discriminate against women, gender equity—like most pay inequity—tends to happen when you’re not looking. The good news is the proliferation of salary data available to employers makes it easier to know how gender pay at their company stacks up.

The first step in addressing the issue is to conduct an audit so that managers and HR leaders can understand whether any female employees are taking home a smaller paycheck for the same work. Then pay practices and compensation can be adjusted to achieve equity across the company.
It’s also vital to discuss the steps being taken to address inequity with your employees, as it is almost as important as the process itself. Both men and women want to work for a company that shares their values on fair and equitable pay. But if you don’t let employees know what you’re doing to eliminate the gender gap, it can be as damaging as doing nothing at all.

Jade Makana is Director of Content at PayScale. She provides resources to help organizations understand the value of developing strategic compensation programs to improve their business performance. For more information, visit

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Tools Every Talent Acquisition Team Needs to Manage the Hiring Process

By Dan Bartfield, co-founder and president of Yello

A streamlined hiring process provides a clear view into the organization and enables recruiters to identify a candidate’s ability to succeed. However, a lack of necessary tools can result in recruiters wasting time—chasing down hiring managers, coordinating schedules and collecting feedback. In order to extend offers to top talent, it’s important to ensure that tools are in place to manage the hiring experience most effectively. As HR departments finalize their budgets for 2017 and evaluate which tools to implement, here are four categories that should be top-of-mind.

Talent Relationship Management

Conversations are happening within a wide pool of candidates across different media, and a talent relationship management (TRM) system can help track engagement, maintain strong relationships with an organization’s talent community and hire the most qualified candidates. Recruitment is a game of speed, and hiring teams can’t afford to be bogged down by clunky systems or to waste time combing through resumes. A TRM combines the functionality of multiple systems to ensure visibility and collaboration among all stakeholders by easily providing, updating, and sharing candidate data. This technology can help talent acquisition teams source directly from a passive candidate pipeline, manage the end-to-end candidate journey in a centralized location, track every candidate touch point, and automate follow-up communication.


Between the screening process, attending recruiting events, and moving candidates through the pipeline, time is a valuable commodity in talent acquisition. Scheduling software streamlines recruiters’ workloads, which allows for greater flexibility, automated administrative functions, and improved efficiency.

Whether you're scheduling interviews in advance, on-the-go, or via candidate self-scheduling, scheduling software ensures that interview scheduling is optimized for all participants. In-person, pre-recorded, and live video interview capabilities enable recruiters to schedule the right type of interviews ,alleviating scheduling conflicts and minimizing travel costs.

Video interviewing

Incorporating video interviewing into the talent acquisition toolkit can save the team from hours of candidate sourcing and screening, reduce the risk of losing top talent to quicker moving companies, and significantly save on the costs of flying in candidates for interviews. Teams can lessen the time investment and scheduling complications associated with phone screens by vetting candidates using pre-recorded video interviewing. Video interviews are an efficient way for recruiters to quickly compare and contrast candidates without delaying the hiring timeline. Phone screens are minimized, time-to-hire is reduced and scheduling changes are easily accommodated.

Evaluation management

Every interview workflow should include online and mobile evaluations to reduce the amount of time required to collect interviewer feedback. Delays in interviewer feedback can result in losing candidates to faster moving companies. Evaluation management software increases productivity by automating evaluation requests as soon as an interview is complete and decreasing the time required from employees to provide feedback on interviewees. Bottlenecks in the hiring pipeline result from manual and/or inefficient processes. Evaluation management software that includes standardized interview and evaluation questions protects against groupthink and removes hiring obstacles.

Dan Bartfield is the co-founder and president of Yello,which provides recruitment technology solutions.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Meaningful Technology

Empowering the emotional impact of employee recognition

By:  Jonathan McClellan, Employee Recognition Segment Director at Hallmark Business Connections

I think we can all agree that employee recognition plays a huge part in the ongoing success of today’s businesses. Engaging, connecting, and empathizing with your employees strengthens your relationship with them and helps create a work culture that fosters greater feelings of being valued, increased productivity, and enhanced performance for your entire organization. Simply put, by “telling them,” you create meaningful connections that deliver measurable results. But how can you maintain authentic, meaningful connections in your employee recognition program when you have 100, 1,000, or more employees? The answer is technology—technology that allows you to work in a meaningful, yet effective way.

Emotionally Impactful Enterprise Effectiveness

Efficiency in your business’ tools, procedures, methodologies, and processes are key to enterprise effectiveness for your business. And when it comes to employee recognition, it’s truly no different.

While face-to-face communication is the best way to recognize an employee achievement or milestone, turning to a technological solution doesn’t have to mean losing warmth or emotion. In fact, technology can make an enterprise-wide recognition program more authentic and meaningful while being efficient. To do this, it must deliver speed, service and scalability in the following ways:

Speed—the ability to recognize, react, and reinforce the employee behaviors and accomplishments that matter most, when they matter most. Speed in your recognition program shows that you care enough to make their moment a priority.

Service—Your technology solution’s ability to give the right people in your organization the right tools to grow the relationships that benefit your business. By empowering them with resources that give them real-time, reaction capability, they can respond on the fly and recognize on the go.

Scalability—An employee recognition solution must ideally offer a platform that is nimble and responsive to the changing needs of your business over time. The technology needs to provide the consistency, clarity, and control that make your job easier, your employees happier, and your bottom line the happiest.

A Note on Scalability

Why are consistency, clarity, and control so important to scalability in an enterprise-wide, recognition solution? Simple. They preserve the continuity, message, and security of your brand, mission, and vision.

In short, scalability ensures your employee recognition solution remains consistent across your organization in how it’s managed, used, and most importantly, received.

Scalability from a technology must offer clarity by providing the tracking, measurement, and reporting a business needs to gauge effective and efficient performance of the program.

Scalability helps preserve security when the technology actively administers and monitors a business’ rules, obligations, and checks and balances in order to maintain compliance.

Recognize the opportunity

Please don’t believe that a technology solution can effectively replace the ol’ face-to-face. It can’t and shouldn’t ever happen. People thrive on human interaction and always will. But, leveraging technology correctly can help your organization build and strengthen relationships when being together isn’t possible. Whether it’s because of a physical distance or a logistic issue, a technology employee recognition solution can fill the gap and ensure a special moment isn’t missed or delayed when it comes to recognizing and celebrating the employee responsible. “telling them,” says a lot about you. And when done in a timely, authentic and sincerely way, it helps your employees and your business thrive.

Jonathan McClellan leads the employee recognition business unit at Hallmark Business Connections, providing strategic leadership and employee enrichment solutions for Fortune 500 performance-centric businesses.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Critical Aspects Influencing Talent Acquisition in APAC

In the current day and age, we have moved into the “Talent Era,” where human capital is a top priority for organisations across the globe. With the fast-changing global economic landscape, wherein the emerging economies of Asia Pacific (APAC), such as China and India, are moving towards global economic supremacy, it is only natural that their talent needs are on the rise. This has consequently led to a steep demand for talent acquisition and talent management-related services in APAC.
The concept of recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) and managed service provider (MSP) programmes is picking up pace in these markets. Historically pioneered by West-headquartered organisations that had a presence in APAC, the RPO and MSP markets have reached a tipping point where many locally headquartered buyers have started embracing these solutions.

Some of the critical aspects influencing talent acquisition in APAC include:
  • Diverse demands are driving growth of RPO and MSP, especially the economic surge. Most APAC countries have experienced rapid economic growth in recent times. Consequently, companies operating here have also grown at a rapid pace leading to a sharp increase in demand for talent. Increasing the number of successful examples in the market is adding to the popularity of RPO and MSP. In the more developed but slow-growing economies, shifts in the talent landscape are driving an increase in outsourcing models. For example, the rapid conversion of talent from permanent to contingent workforce in Australia is causing organisations to look at a MSP programme. An increased openness in Japan around the concept of outsourcing is driving up RPO adoption there.
  • Maturity levels vary greatly by region. APAC is a heterogonous market where the level of awareness and adoption varies significantly from country to country . In general, RPO has seen more traction than MSP in APAC. Everest Group’s analysis shows that while Australia accounts for almost half of the market and is clearly the most mature, Singapore and Hong Kong are next, as these countries host the regional headquarters of many firms. China, India, and Japan are emerging markets witnessing heightened activity. Other markets are relatively smaller and are in early stages of maturity (see image 1). 
  • The market is experiencing growth. Everest Group’s research shows that APAC accounts for nearly 10 to 15 per cent of the global talent acquisition services market (North America is the biggest market, followed by Europe) and is the fastest growing. The strong growth is primarily attributed to heightened activity in the emerging markets of China, India, and Malaysia. Australia, while accounting for almost half of the market, is showing signs of maturity and is expected to grow relatively slowly (see image 2).
  • Multi-country deal activity is more common. An interesting aspect of the APAC market is the high occurrence of multi-country deal activity. Most global companies present here tend to operate across multiple countries in the region and, more often than not, enter into a multi-country arrangement to fulfil all their regional talent requirements. Barring Australia, most APAC countries are generally included in a multi-country construct (see image 3).
  • Local firms are earning market share. The market for talent acquisition services in APAC was pioneered by regional/local arms of firms that had their headquarters in the West. However, this trend is undergoing a rapid change, as many locally-headquartered firms have started to adopt such services in a big way.
  • Diverse challenges call for unique solutions. APAC is a heterogeneous market, and Everest Group’s conversations with enterprises in different countries have found varying needs necessitate building different solution models. Significant pricing differential prevails in the region, which requires for a well-thought-out delivery strategy. This also calls for a differentiated technology strategy, as most global solutions may not be viable in low-cost countries within the region. There are also challenges in terms of languages and regulations,
    which may make it almost impossible to do business without some sort of local presence.
  • The service provider landscape is diverse. Given the tremendous potential, many global service providers have already made a foray into the market. Some did it through acquisitions, while others went the organic route. Given that the market is inherently different from the West, many country-level service providers have also made quite a name for themselves. These local providers understand the regional sentiments well and have developed strong in-country delivery presence. 
 APAC is a fast-growing segment of the global talent acquisition outsourcing market—a fact that is unlikely to change in the near to medium future. As buyers look for tailored solutions to their talent problems and as global players adapt their strategies to suit local requirements, it raises multiple interesting questions: Will this market stay true to its potential? How will global players approach this market? What will be their value proposition and what type of solution will they bring in? What will be their strategy to counter the entrenched local providers? Whatever the answer may be to these, as long as the answer to the first question is yes, it will be a boon for buyers as they get offered more choices, more innovation, and ultimately greater value.

—Arkadev “Arko” Basak, practice director of Everest Group 

Monday, November 14, 2016

Photos from HRO Today Forum EMEA 2016

Thanks so much for attending the HRO Today Forum EMEA in Edinburgh! If you couldn't make it, check out the photos below! Visit to learn more about our other forums.

The Consumerization of Contingent Workforce Management Technology

By Brad Martin, Senior Director of Product Marketing | PRO Unlimited 

Within the contingent workforce industry, vendor management systems (VMS) have been plagued by a lack of consumerization. As in many industries, the technology has historically suffered from a robotic and cumbersome approach to user interaction. Now, however, there is a dramatic change happening in enterprise software design. The chasm between the consumer and enterprise experience is quickly closing. New “consumerized enterprise” solutions extend user experiences found in the world’s leading consumer applications to the business domain. 

The goal is to create an environment of efficiency. There needs to be a synergy between enterprise processes and the ease-of-use that these VMS deliver to both HR managers and contingent workers. End users, whether they are at home or at work, want solutions that are intuitive, easy-to-use, and deliver functionality that meets their transactional or business requirements.

Therefore, it’s critical that VMS software is designed for an omni-channel experience. The concept of an omni-channel VMS experience is simple, effective, and required for the evolving workforce. Users can access and utilize all major functions of the VMS from any device (web, mobile, tablet, and wearable). They can quickly review and approve timecards, expenses, statement-of-work (SOW) billing, among other notifications and requests. Ultimately, an omni-channel experience delivers the following benefits: faster execution, faster decision-making, and faster adoption. For example, when a worker or manager log in from their desktop or mobile device, there should be a short list of tasks that require completion. This enables a more actionable view of primary responsibilities and allows the user to optimize their time without wasting precious clicks searching for items that do not need immediate attention. 

Another area that benefits contingent workforce management technology is “contextual interface design.” In this type of design, the buttons on the interface will adapt to elevate the appropriate action for any task. There may be recently created requests and the actions required in context to its status. For a request that is in a “candidates submitted” status, the action button presented might say “review resumes”. However, that same action button might say “contact approver” if the request is waiting for approval before it can be submitted to suppliers. In either case, the action that users take will be in context to the status of that request.

VMS features should also incorporate vendor profiles containing a “Yelp!-like” review system that produces a rating for managers to reference when selecting vendors. Additionally, vendors can manage aspects of their profile though a vendor portal. Managers who wish to include a request for information (RFI) as part of a project request can do so by creating their questions through a Survey Monkey-type interface.  When reviewing quote submissions, the manager can review the quote and RFI details in a side-by-side view that rivals that of a Consumer Reports shopping application.

Finally, there is a need to understand that consumerization is the reorienting and reimagining of enterprise software away from “process-driven design” and towards delivering a rich, enjoyable experience. Organizations that manage contingent workforces can now realize the benefits of a new design approach that creates more intuitive user interfaces while incorporating familiar UI patterns and features like real-time in app messaging, peer rating for vendors, and contextual action. These types of features along with mobile functionality will result in delivering greater business outcomes across the enterprise like never before.

Monday, November 7, 2016

HRO Today Forum EMEA Starts Tomorrow!

We at HRO Today are very pleased to announce that our annual HRO Today Forum EMEA in Edinburgh, Scotland will begin tomorrow, Nov. 8!

The central theme of this year’s event is Be Connected! – HR Technology, Services and Leaders Unite. As technology continues to become more prevalent and integrated in daily life, leaders are learning to adapt and rethink the way their businesses attract, retain, and serve their employees.

Our program this year will focus on the way that technology has shaped today’s HR processes and ways that HR will continue to evolve in the future. We’ve got a fantastic agenda of diverse and informative sessions and plenty of opportunities to discuss best practices and network with top HR professionals.

For the full agenda and detailed information about sessions, speakers, and sponsors, check out our event guide.

We are also excited to recognize our attendees for their innovative contributions to the HR field during our HRO Today EMEA Awards Gala. Click here for more information about our annual awards.

We hope that you will find this year’s HRO Today Forum EMEA to be both informative and enjoyable!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Overlooked Employee Resources for Influencing Wellness Engagement

By Laurie Gondek, Vice President of Strategic Accounts, Welltok

As employers strive to drive greater participation in their health and wellness programs, they may be overlooking key factors and resources that influence engagement. These factors were uncovered as part of a 2016 research survey of over 1,000 employees asking them what their motivations are to improve their health and well-being.

The survey found that employers won’t succeed with a one-size-fits-all approach, especially if they want to maximize the investments they have made in their health and well-being programs. Employees desire a customized program that fits their particular health goals and needs. With the right mix of programs, outreach and incentives, employers can realize the results they envision. These resources, which are often overlooked, will help engage employees more effectively.

The Top Overlooked Employees Resources:

Manager and Family Engagement

One of the most effective motivators has nothing to do with communications coming from the HR department; employees say they want programs delivered to them that are customized and easily shared with others. They would like to participate if they can involve their friends and family. Programs that involve the family are likely to drive greater participation. Direct managers and colleagues are also a big influence when at the office. They help to create a culture of health and help to set an example that enables employees to spend time on these kinds of activities. 

Beyond Health and Wellness: Personal and Financial Support
Employers need to go beyond traditional offerings and add programs that include more than just physical fitness, including activities like stress management, employee assistance programs and counseling. One of the most overlooked programs in this category is helping employees to cultivate positive emotions by practicing mindfulness, expressing gratitude, conducting acts of kindness or even promoting better sleeping habits.

Offering a personalized financial program like financial counseling, financial planning, or retirement planning is an often overlooked but desired resource. Perceptions on the employer’s role in financial health are varied by age, gender and income, so it’s important to have personalized programs that meet the needs of your employers no matter where they are in life.

It’s so simple, yet many employers don’t think to offer rewards. Nearly all employees (91 percent) say that they would engage in healthier behaviors if they received an incentive or reward, such as lower premiums, co-pays, gift cards, sweepstakes, or a charitable donation. This is true across all age groups with a slight decline as employees got older.

The good news is that the majority of companies can maximize the value of their offerings, regardless of their current levels of employee participation by offering the right mix of customizable programs. However, it’s important to note that not every employee is motivated by the same drivers. Employers must think more carefully about how to leverage these overlooked resources to connect individuals with the right programs at the right time, as well as how to create the right support networks and incentive design structures in order to generate the highest possible return on their investments.