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Posts from the ‘All Blog Posts’ Category

HR (Helpfully) Off to The Side

creelmannarToday’s guest post was written by Workforce Institute board member David Creelman.  David spends a lot of his time thinking and writing about the role HR plays in helping organizations maximize the potential and contributions of their employees.  In today’s post, he talks about how sometimes the best thing HR professionals can do is to give people the tools they need to thrive and then get out of the way.

One of the major trends at the recent HR Tech show in Las Vegas was HR applications that were not directly aimed at HR. In other words, these are HR-related software applications that are aimed at either the employee or manager as the main user. This is a trend of particular import to HR leaders involved in workforce management, where the space has always been led as much by operations, and even finance, as HR.

By HR applications not aimed at HR, I don’t mean the familiar employee or manager self-service functionality. Self-service was usually about pushing some administrative work off of HR and onto either managers or employees (presumably because it made more sense for them to do it themselves). What interests me are applications that help employees or managers with their work or personal lives in a way that sits to the side of HR.

One example is career-planning software where the employee owns the data. They can take the app with them as they move between companies. HR enables this by getting employees started and paying for the app, but after that it’s not HR leading the career planning; HR is off to the side while the employee manages their own career.

An example directly related to the workforce space are apps that allow an employee to see who is on their shift and to swap shifts. While of course HR and operations have the ability to create restrictions on who can swap shifts with whom, fundamentally this is about HR giving a great tool to employees and then stepping aside – all the while taking employee self-service and scheduling empowerment to the next level.

A management example is those apps that focus on setting and tracking goals rather than focusing on the performance appraisal cycle. HR departments need appraisal for its own purposes, but the day-to-day management of goals is the domain of managers. Again HR is off to the side, enabling this capability rather than being directly involved.

What I want HR leaders to take away from this is the idea that they have a role in people issues that goes beyond things that involve HR processes. HR can create an ecosystem of tools that empower employees and managers. HR off to the side may have more long-term impact than HR in the midst of things.


Kronos is #1 Top Place to Work

Globe Top Places logoHere at Kronos, we are very pleased to announce today that the Boston Globe named us #1 on their annual Top Places to Work list.

According to the Globe’s press release, “What matters most to employers are their people. This year’s winning companies go above and beyond to motivate and challenge their workers, which tends to encourage innovation and loyalty.”

We Kronites knew it all along, but it’s great to get the public recognition.

If you’d like to work at Kronos, check out our career site.  We’re waiting for you!

Has the Freelance Revolution Arrived in Your Workplace?

53millionfreelancers1One of the most important issues we help our clients address is the need to match their workforce to a changing workload. One way to do this is to use workforce analytics and scheduling technology to make data driven decisions about how to deploy talent. That talent often consists of a mix of full time, part time and contingent (temporary) workers.  The chart here from Harvard Business Review notes that the different categories of temporary workers  represent a significant portion (31%) of the US workforce.

The rise of the freelance economy has been predicted frequently in the last 15 years or so.  When I worked at talent management vendor BrassRing  (now IBM Kenexa) years ago, we frequently discussed whether the resume was dead, whether the internet would remove the role of the recruiter altogether, and whether the freelance economy would replace the traditional model of employer-employee.  While the resume is still with us, social tools like LinkedIn have made it easier than ever for recruiters (yup, still with us) to find great talent.  And yes, the freelancers continue to become a more important part of the overall workforce.

In a new blog post on Harvard Business Review, Workforce Institute board member David Creelman and his co-authors John Boudreau and Ravin Jesuthasan write about the emergence of talent platforms that help organizations hire and manage freelance workers. The examples in this article are focused on creative talent for project-based work at ad agencies.  Read on to learn about how some of these new talent platforms are enabling the connection of freelancers and those who need their services in “Tongal, dLance, and Topcoder Will Change How You Compete”.  The question the article raises is how easily this model could be extended to other types of freelance work.

What’s going on in your organization?  Do you use a lot of freelancers?  Do you use talent platforms like the ones mentioned in the HBR post to engage and manage them?