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    Tuesday
    Aug092016

    PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 253 - Introducing Research on the Rocks

    Last week I shared the HR Happy Hour Podcast Network launch announcement, and today I am really pleased and excited to share the details of the first new show on the network - the debut episode of Research on the Rocks, with hosts Madeline Laurano and Mollie Lombardi of Aptitude Research Partners.

    Thanks to Madeline and Mollie for being a part of the HR Happy Hour Show family!

    Here are the details for Research on the Rocks debut episode:

    HR Happy Hour 253 - Welcoming Research on the Rocks to the HR Happy Hour family of podcasts

    Hosts: Madeline Laurano and Mollie Lombardi

    Listen HERE

    On the very first “Research on the Rocks” podcast, Mollie and Madeline talk about why they formed Aptitude Research Partners, what makes HCM research cool, and how thrilled they are to be part of the HR Happy Hour Family. 

    The self-proclaimed data geeks discuss some of the hottest research topics including pay equity in Massachusetts, employee communication and assessments. They also identify two areas they are focusing on this month: payroll and recruitment marketing. Oh, and they talk a little bit about farming, running, Clydesdales, rifles, and the lost art of hobbies. Don’t ask. Just listen.

    You can listen to the show on the show page HERE, or by using the widget player below:

    This was a fun and interesting show, and I hope you check it out.  

    And remember you can subscribe to the HR Happy Hour Show, Research on the Rocks, and all the HR Happy Hour Network shows on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, or your favorite podcast app. Just search for 'HR Happy Hour' to subscribe and you will never miss a show.

    Thanks again Madeline and Mollie and welcome to our HR Happy Hour family!

    Monday
    Aug082016

    You might not like 'Time to Fill' as a recruiting metric, but it matters to candidates

    A few weeks ago I wrote about how the latest data shows that in the US it has never taken longer, (in terms of business days), to fill the average open position. Here's the chart backing up that statement, in case you want a little bit of a refresher.

    After I ran the post I got a couple of emails and a few comments on Twitter that more or less said the same thing - 'Time to fill' doesn't matter. It is not important to the C-suite, and is getting less important to hiring managers'. Most of the comments ended up saying something along the lines of 'It is better to take longer to find the 'right' hire' than simply trying to find the 'fast' hire - the kind of strategy that would negatively impact time to fill.

    And while I do grant that there is probably some truth in those sentiments, I also think that like most of the reasonably difficult challenges in the talent game, the real truth is somewhere between the extremes. Does 'time to fill' matter in all cases? Certainly not. But are there some circumstances where it matters a lot? Absolutely. 

    Let me share some details from a recent piece from the BBC about how giant consultancy KPMG is adapting their recruiting practices, at least in one important area, all around the idea and realization that their recruiting process has to move more quickly, thus reducing time to fill measures.

    From the piece:

    Accountancy firm KPMG has changed its graduate recruitment process to suit people born between 1980 and 2000 - the so-called millennial generation.

    Instead of conducting three separate assessments over several weeks, it will now combine the process into one day.

    The firm says the change will mean applicants will find out if they have got a job within two working days.

    It made the change following research suggesting millennials were frustrated by lengthy recruitment processes.

    KPMG said its survey- conducted among 400 of this summer's new graduates applying for a graduate job at a UK firm - found that more than one-third were annoyed about how long they had to wait to hear the outcome of an interview, and how long the recruitment process took.

    At first read the changes that KPMG are implementing seem totally aimed at improving the candidate experience and adapting to meet the expectations of the newer generation. And that is definitely part of the story. What was not stated in the BBC piece but what certainly must be true was that KPMG was losing out on desirable new hires because their process was simpy taking too long. 

    In-demand new university graduates likely have lots of options for employment once they leave school, and rather than wait weeks for KPMG to make a decision, some, if not many of them were just moving on to other, more agile companies. By implementing these process changes, KPMG hopes to both improve the overall candidate experience and reduce the number of candidates that 'get away' to competing firms.

    And guess what else happens when the time it takes for KPMG to make offers and execute hires for new university graduates is reduced from weeks to days? 

    Time to fill all of a sudden goes down - way down. And while that metric might not matter to you or to your CEO it means something to the these university graduates who make up the talent pipeline for KPMG. 

    And it means plenty to any candidate who has options. Time to fill is just code for 'Make sure you can move fast enough to not lose out on the most sought-after candidates.'

    Have a great week!

    Friday
    Aug052016

    Where workforce planning, talent attraction, and facilities strategy meet

    Quick shot for a busy summer Friday, (isn't every Friday now a busy Friday?), and a quick reminder on just how important workforce planning and talent attraction and acquisition challenges are towards making big, hairy organizational decisions like 'Where should we build the factory?' and 'Should corporate HQ be in some massive office park in the suburbs (near the affluent towns where all the C-suite lives), or within the city limits, (where the millennials all want to live?).

    Take a quick Friday or weekend read of this piece from the New York Times titled "Why corporate America is leaving the suburbs for the city' to get a feel of how these dynamics and interplay between HR, talent, culture, and organizational strategy are playing out for companies like McDonald's, Motorola,  and General Electric.

    An excerpt from the piece (and you really should read it all):

    For decades, many of the nation’s biggest companies staked their futures far from the fraying downtowns of aging East Coast and Midwestern cities. One after another, they decamped for sprawling campuses in the suburbs and exurbs.

    Now, corporate America is moving in the other direction.

    In June, McDonald’s joined a long list of companies that are returning to downtown Chicago from suburbs like Oak Brook, Northfield and Schaumburg.

    Later this month, the top executive team at General Electric — whose 70-acre wooded campus in Fairfield, Conn., has embodied the quintessential suburban corporate office park since it opened in 1974 — will move to downtown Boston. When the move is completed in 2018, the renovated red brick warehouses that will form part of G.E.’s new headquarters won’t even have a parking lot, let alone a spot reserved for the chief executive.

    Why are these companies heading back into the central, urban areas that many of them exited for the (literally) greener pastures of the suburban corporate office park back in the last 20 - 30 years?

    Like we do for everything else, it's time to blame the millennials. More from the Times piece:

    The headquarters of Motorola Solutions will start moving to downtown Chicago on Aug. 15, though more workers will stay in suburban Schaumburg than move to the new offices near Union Station. But for the first time in half a century, top executives from the company will again be in downtown Chicago.

    “Where you work really matters,” said Greg Brown, the chief executive of Motorola Solutions. “No disrespect to Schaumburg, but customers and new hires didn’t want to come to the suburbs an hour outside of Chicago. We wanted energy, vibrancy and diversity, and to accelerate a change in our culture by moving downtown.”

    “This was the right thing in terms of strategy,” he said. “Millennials want the access and vibrancy of downtown. When we post jobs downtown, we get four or five times the response.”

    On the surface, it all makes sense, and isn't really all that complex. These companies and others are finding it harder to draw the new, often technical talent they need to some far-flung corporate outpost an hour from the city center whose primary draws are things like 'good schools' and 'ample parking' - things that don't often attract childless, Uber-preferring younger workers.

    But HR folks that have dialed in their workforce planning and talent attraction strategies to help inform the CEO and COO on matters such as these can't simply rest now that they have made the big call to relocate the company HQ back into the city. Eventually these new workers start to get a little older, start to think about wanting the things that make the suburbs attractive in the first place - the schools, the Whole Foods, the 1.2 acre lawn, etc. 

    What happens then? Does the organization head back out to the 'burbs? Do you keep a 'millennial-friendly' presence in the city regardless? Workforce planning has always been important, it is just getting harder I think than it used to be in the past.

    The best HR/talent advisor needs to have a little bit of cultural anthropologist in them I think, to better inform their organization's workforce and talent plans with at least an educated guess on what things outside of work are going to be important to the people that do the work. And where they want to live might be the most important of all.

    Have a great weekend!

    Also, in case you missed it - BIG news from the HR Happy Hour Show this week, read all about it HERE.

    Wednesday
    Aug032016

    ANNOUNCEMENT: The HR Happy Hour Podcast Network

    I am super excited today to share some great news - the official launch of the HR Happy Hour Podcast Network, and the details of the three new shows that will soon debut on the HR Happy Hour umbrella. My co-host, Trish McFarlane and I are thrilled to be joined by such a great lineup of shows and contributors, and you can read the details of the announcement HERE.

    Some quick backstory for folks who may not be familiar with the HR Happy Hour Show, (I know, shocking!), that will help explain and set the context for today's announcement.

    Back in 2009 I was an adjunct instructor at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY teaching a graduate-level course for HR Master's students on the topic of HR Technology. At that time I got the crazy idea to try and record interviews with HR and HR Tech leaders, and make these audio files a part of the course's required materials for the class. I used the Blog Talk Radio platform to make the recording process a little easier for guests, as back then, even Skype was hardly in use by most folks, and fewer folks were recording podcasts on their own, in even a quasi-professional manner.

    Since then, the HR Happy Hour Show has evolved and transformed. The first two or three years featured mostly live-streamed shows broadcasting at 8PM on Thursday nights, complete with callers, a lively Twitter backchannel on the #HRHappyHour hashtag, and even dedicated Google Wave threads!

    In the last few years the HR Happy Hour has become a more traditional podcast, generally pre-recorded, or recorded live at industry events, and (lightly) edited to fit the now much more widespread and popular podcast format and formula. The last few years have seen a dramatic rise in the overall popularity of podcasting in a number of topics and domains, and I personally am proud that the HR Happy Hour Show was podcasting before podcasting was cool! We have had a series of great guests, covered the most relevant topics in HR, HR Technology, work, and the workplace, and had a lot of fun along the way.

    And now with the launch of the new HR Happy Hour Network, these first three new titles, (details are in the release here), and to be partnering with such a great group of people, I am confident the next seven years of the HR Happy Hour will be just as much fun as the first seven.

    Many thanks to everyone who has listened to, supported, or even guested on the show so far - stay tuned for more great and informative content, HR and HR technology insights, and hopefully - lots of fun from your pals at the HR Happy Hour Show and Network.

    Tuesday
    Aug022016

    VIDEO: Human Talks Show with guest Brent Skinner, Nucleus Research

    A few weeks ago at the Oracle HCM World event in Chicago, I had the chance to partner with HR Happy Hour Show co-host and H3 HR Advisors CEO Trish McFarlane to record a video interview series titled "Human Talks" from the show floor.

    I am excited to share this new video series that we did in partnership with Oracle. The Human Talks series is a show very similar to the HR Happy Hour Podcast where Trish and I were able to talk to HCM practitioners, analysts, and Oracle partners about some of the big issues, trends, and technologies in the HR and HR technology realms. Each episode is approximately 5 - 10 minutes or so, and well worth your time in hearing what is happening in the world of HCM. Please check out the first episode with one of our favorite industry analysts, Brent Skinner, Principal Analyst at Nucleus Research. You can check out the video HERE, or on the widget player below (email and RSS subscribers click through to see the video).

    In this episode, Brent shares information on what their research is uncovering about performance management and learning and the impact from HCM technology. He also touches on how predictive analytics plays out in the workplace. Be sure to connect with Brent and Nucleus Research to learn more. 

    This was a fun series of interviews and I will share future episodes of Human Talks as they are posted. 

    Thanks to Trish and to our friends at Oracle for making this project possible.