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Workforce Trends Advice Videos for SMB Organizations

SaasHR video seriesSaaShr (a Kronos company) is launching an educational series of videos to help small and medium sized organizations navigate a wide range of business issues they face in managing their employees.  I wrote about some of the trends facing SMB organizations in a recent article I did for the Huffington Post.  Having been in the technology industry for over 30 years, I’ve had a lot of experience in deploying technology solutions in everything from 50 person companies to the largest companies in the world.  One thing I’ve learned is that smaller doesn’t necessarily mean less complex.  If anything, smaller companies may need even more sophisticated tools to support their lean operations.

The Workforce Trends video series will feature an array of  workforce management experts who deploy solutions for their customers every day.  From the Affordable Care Act to mobile, cloud, big data and outsourcing, these experts have already “been there and done that”.  You can tune in here to check out the first video in the series, with advice on what SMB organizations need to know to be in compliance with the Affordable Care Act.

Relevant Links:

Five Major Trends That Will Impact Small and Medium Businesses in 2015 – Huffington Post 

Workforce Institute Predictions of Top 5 Workforce Management Trends in 2015



Millennials Rise Up To Management In 2015

headshot6_schawbel_largeToday’s guest post is from our newest board member, Dan Schawbel.  Dan is the Founder of, a research and insights membership service for forward-thinking HR professionals, and the New York Times bestselling author of Promote Yourself and Me 2.0.  Below, Dan explores a trend on the minds of lots of HR pros, what happens in the workplace as the Millennials rise into the management ranks?

One of the biggest trends I’ve been following is the rise of Millennials into management roles. It’s going to happen at an unprecedented rate in 2015. Are Millennials (and the workplace) ready?

I’m a Millennial myself, have released twenty primary research studies around this topic and reviewed thousands of reports. A few years ago, we found that Millennials accounted for approximately 13% of management positions in America. Last year, we worked with Elance-oDesk to see the growth of Millennials into management roles since. We found that 27% of Millennials are now managers and, in the next ten years, nearly half (47%) want to be either managers or senior managers.

Two separate studies show that we might have underestimated the surge of Millennial managers in the workplace. First, EY found that 59% of their managers are already Millennials and 18% are senior managers. 90% of all Millennials who are managers took their role in the past five years.  Second, a CareerBuilder study found that 38% of the workforce is already managed by Millennials.

Regardless of source, Millennials are being rushed into management roles because more boomers are leaving the workforce due to retirement or an encore career. Since they haven’t been in the workforce for very long, many are unprepared for these new managerial roles. Just because you know how to do your job, doesn’t mean that you have the ability to manage other people. Millennials’ lack of preparation is due not only to the aging workforce but the entitlement that some have showcased  when it comes to promotions.

Another aspect of this trend that often gets overlooked is that younger workers have fear and anxiety when managing older workers. In many situations, you will find a Millennial managing a Gen X or baby boomer employee. Since these generations have a challenging time relating to each other, it’s become a real struggle in the workplace. We have found that despite all generations preferring face time, there is still a major technology gap and learning curve between generations. While Millennials are using Snapchat, Instagram, texting and instant messaging, older generations want to speak on the phone or in person.  In order to shrink the technology gap, and bring all generations together in a way that enables Millennials to be better managers, a formal mentoring and training program is required.

It goes without saying that all generations can learn from each other. When in management, Millennials should seek to learn from older managers. One way to force this interaction is to create a mentoring program at your company. This way, Millennial managers can meet with Gen X and boomer managers on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to learn about leadership techniques and acquire new management skills. Every new Millennial manager should go through this program so they are better prepared for their position and because these mentors become a lifeline just in case there are employee issues and complaints down the road.

I personally think it’s a very exciting time to be in the workforce as a Millennial manager because you can innovate, learn and fuel the next generation of corporate growth.

To what extent are the management ranks filling with Millennials in your organization?  What is the impact of this migration?



Workforce Institute Board Predictions for 2015



At a recent board of advisors meeting, members of The Workforce Institute at Kronos Incorporated discussed the top issues we believe will impact the world of workforce management in 2015. Individual board members also recorded personal predictions that will affect their respective industries that you can view on youtube.

We’ll be discussing these predictions – and yours? – during a Tweet Chat on Thursday, Jan. 22 from 12:00-1:00 p.m. ET to discuss 2015 workplace trends and predictions.  Use #KronosChat to participate.

 Top Trends for 2015

  1. Regulations Shake up the Workplace: Minimum wage law changes and looming U.S. Affordable Care Act deadlines dominated 2014 headlines, but organizations will feel the impact of these and other legislated changes in 2015. Additionally, with continued public discourse on non-exempt workers and topics surrounding a living wage, new legislation is expected to arise in this final term of the Obama Administration. With today’s regulations administered not only at the national and state levels but down to the city, municipal, and individualized union levels, new compliance requirements will shake up processes for organizations while adding another layer of complexity for national and  multinational organizations.
  2. Employees are an Asset: Successful organizations have learned that excellent financial returns do not have to come at the expense of the employee. Research shows that employees – especially the front line, hourly workforce – should be seen as an asset, not just a cost to be managed.  Successful organizations will invest more in their workforces to increase employee engagement and create a virtuous cycle that leads to happy customers.
  3. Seismic Shift in Generational Workforce Dynamics: Baby Boomers – the largest generation to ever hit the workforce – will continue retiring in droves as their children take on more workplace responsibility. As their predecessors exit the workplace, many Generation Xers could see increased opportunity, including long-awaited pay raises. Millennials will take on management positions for the first time. Talent retention and career development will be key in 2015 as organizations train new managers while working to simultaneously shrink the skills gap and hold onto knowledge assets of a retiring workforce.
  4. Analytics for Evidence-based Decision Making: Most organizations drowned in data in 2014, as many have not yet unlocked the secret to analytical success. However, organizations that have lagged behind will take notice of winning big data best practices from previous years, while workforce management tools will deliver analytics for evidence-based decision making in 2015. Industry-specific solutions, visualization technology, and new applications from specialized consultation and services vendors will utilize existing workforce management data to create actionable insight.
  5. Consumer Technology Infiltrates Workforce Management: Human resources, operations, and management professionals would be wise to keep an eye on news from the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show, as consumer technologies are poised to dramatically impact workforce management. Mobile devices and social media have transformed the way employees and employers communicate, while gamification and wearable technologies are expected to win in the workplace. Workforce management software suites and mobile platforms will continue to evolve with consumer software design concepts, including increased focus on the user experience (UX), responsive design, and drag-and-drop and touchscreen performance.

If you’d like to hear all of these predictions and more directly from our board members, you can find them on youtube.

Related Information:

2015 Major Tech Trends for Small & Medium Businesses

When Will (or Did?) Wearable Technology Come to Your Workplace?