CedarCrestone HR Systems Survey

For the last 12 years CedarCrestone has been conducting research into how organisations are using technology to support their HR functions, the resulting report is a must read for anyone involved in the HR Technology industry.

Once again it is time for the survey and I really encourage all of my readers who are part of organisations with 500+ employees to participate.

Below is the invite from Alexia Martin Research Director from CedarCrestone:

CedarCrestone requests your participation in its CedarCrestone 2010–2011 HR Systems Survey: HR Technologies, Service Delivery Choices, and Metrics Survey, 13th Annual Edition through July 5, 2010. The survey is a comprehensive research effort designed to provide organizations with important data to plan, justify, benchmark, and execute HR technologies. The survey questionnaire is available online at www.CedarCrestone.com/hrssv3.

All respondents will receive an advance copy of the results in late September 2010. We will invite you to a special webinar of results thereafter. The first 100 respondents completing the survey will receive a $5 Starbucks card. There are further enticements described at the end of this letter.

The 2010–2011 HR Survey covers questions about:

  • Application adoption
  • HR software acquisition and deployment trends
  • “Going global” trends
  • The value of HR technologies

“For six years in a row,” says HR Technology® Conference co-chair Bill Kutik, “we have asked CedarCrestone to debut its survey at our event because it is the most thorough, highly respected and useful survey on technology usage in HR. Clearly, HR and IT practitioners know that, too, because it draws standing room only attendance every year.”

The survey collects responses from HR and IT management with knowledge of the HR technologies in use and planned. We invite representatives from organizations in all industries with over 500 employees to participate. All responses are anonymous and will be kept confidential. We will only use your information in the aggregate. The survey questionnaire is available online at www.CedarCrestone.com/hrssv3.

We appreciate your contribution to the most comprehensive collection of data focused on HR technologies usage and overall HR service delivery.

Best wishes,

Alexia Martin
Director, Research and Analytics

Twitter Bans Third-Party Ads

I noticed an interesting development over night, Twitter is looking to ban all third-part ad networks from injecting ads into users Twitter streams.

From the Twitter blog:

As our primary concern is the long-term health and value of the network, we have and will continue to forgo near-term revenue opportunities in the service of carefully metering the impact of Promoted Tweets on the user experience. It is critical that the core experience of real-time introductions and information is protected for the user and with an eye toward long-term success for all advertisers, users and the Twitter ecosystem. For this reason, aside from Promoted Tweets, we will not allow any third party to inject paid tweets into a timeline on any service that leverages the Twitter API. We are updating our Terms of Service to articulate clearly what we mean by this statement, and we encourage you to read the updated API Terms of Service to be released shortly.

Now as the terms of service have not been updated we do not know what this really means but this announcement got me thinking with regard to Job Ads.

Are job boards just another ad network? If so will job boards be prohibited from pushing job ads into Twitter?

I’m sure it won’t come to that but interesting to think about the consequences if it does.

Employee Engagement and Social Media

Over the last 2 weeks I have been giving a series of presentations looking at how social media (and Enterprise 2.0) can drive employee engagement. While the slides are available on slideshare for download I wanted to give a bit of context.

As part of preparing the presentation I came across a presentation by Susan Scrupski from Soco Partners (I also lifted several other ideas from one of her presentations to the 2.0 Adoption Council, thanks Susan!), where Susan introduced the concept of 2.0 Zen:

  • Collaboration
  • Trust
  • Authenticity
  • Transparency

This struck a chord with me. If someone had asked me to describe good social media these are the words I would have used. But I started looking at this a little further, from an HR point of view, and from my research on engagement. I have found five general attributes that enable employees to feel valued and therefore engaged:

  • Involvement in decision making
  • Feel they are able to voice their ideas, & managers listen to these views
  • Have line of sight between employee performance & company performance
  • They have career development
  • When the organisation is concerned for employees’ health & wellbeing

While looking at this it occurred to me that an organisation that had a highly engaged workforce exhibited the same attributes as Susan’s 2.0 Zen:

  • Collaboration
  • Trust
  • Authenticity
  • Transparency

From this I built the rest of the presentation, which you can find below.

How to Motivate Employees to Succeed

This guest post is contributed by Melissa Tamura.

Every employer wants to get the most productivity from their employees. If you push too hard, though, you risk making employees unhappy, causing unwelcome turnover and costing you money. So the question remains, how do you motivate your employees to work their best?

Praise

Employers are often amazed how well this one little trick, which costs nothing, can so strongly motivate employee behavior. Bosses often think that their employees are only motivated by money, but the truth is, employees want to like their jobs. They want to like their bosses and the companies for whom they work. This can be a huge leverage for employers, especially in tough economic times when money just isn’t there for performance bonuses.

Every employee performance review should highlight two or three positive aspects of the person’s performance for every negative aspect. Show appreciation for the work the person does for you every day while asking for better performance in certain areas. Don’t make performance review time something to be dreaded, but rather something the employee looks forward to.

Make the employee newsletter a chance to praise and highlight high performing, rank and file employees. Institute “Employee of the Month” or even week programs. Rewards can be as simple as a preferred parking spot, but it’s the recognition that will gain you loyal employees.

Talk to Your Employees

Something as small as time spent with company management can help motivate employees. Have a weekly brown bag session with randomly selected employees. Allow them to give feedback and feel like their voices are heard. Let them ask questions, and answer those questions seriously.

Take time to walk through your production areas, greeting employees and chatting for a moment. If your production is industrial, then do this in the lunchroom. Better yet, eat in the lunch room once or twice a week. Be present to your employees. The more you show that you care for your employees, the more your employees will care about you and your bottom line.

Invest Employees in the Bottom Line

Many companies have a performance bonus plan, but it’s often limited to management. Why not provide performance bonuses to all employees, at least at some level. Employees will be more conscious of the bottom line if they have some stake in the company’s quarterly and annual outcome. Watching waste in the little things can add up to big numbers at the end of the year. Finding ways to streamline production, save steps, or use less can have a big impact. If every employee is invested in finding ways to make the company more profitable, instead of just management, your company can make a big turnaround.

Provide Careers, Not Just a Job

Providing opportunities to grow in their career is a great motivation for many employees. Have plans in place for a career path for your employees. Talk to them about what is required to grow from one level to the next. Help provide training for those who with to move up in the company. Whether it’s sending your assistant to a yearly professional conference or having a tuition reimbursement plan, helping your employees’ careers helps you in the long run.

Remember, employees are not just motivated by money. They spend almost half of their waking time working for you. They want to feel like that time is an investment, not just a necessary evil needed to pay the rent. Employees want to enjoy their work and their work environment. They want to feel good about their work and the company they work for. Filling these needs can go a long way to motivating long term, loyal, and productive employees.

Marshall Goldsmith at AHRI National Convention


Marshall Goldsmith opened the 2010 AHRI National Convention with a highly interactive and thought provoking talk looking at how to be a better coach. Marshall began the session by saying his focus is to teach leaders what to STOP doing instead of teaching them what to do.

Marshall provided us 5 key challenges of successful leaders that they all need to overcome to be truly great:

  1. Winning to much
  2. Adding too much value
  3. Telling the world how smart we are
  4. “I already knew that”
  5. Passing judgement

He then went on to demonstrate that the key to solving each of these challenges is starting to think more about others than about you. For example, when you try to add additional thoughts and ideas someone’s idea the quality of the idea might go up 5% but their commitment to the idea goes down 15% as it is not longer their idea. Further focusing just on achievement is really all about focusing on me, whereas leadership is all about focusing on other people.

Marshal provided an amazing statistic that the percentage of all interpersonal communication time spent on people talking about how smart they are and people talking about how stupid, bad, inept others are is around 65%!! He did a quick survey of the room and found we felt the average was around 70%, very close. Essentially if business wants to increase productivity then just look to reduce this number as these activities are not revenue generating.

A great coaching tip from Marshall is he has found that creating an environment where people lose small amounts of money creates very large changes in behavior. For example, fining yourself $1/$5 or $10 whenever you do one of the following:

  • Start a sentence with no, but, or however
  • Start a sentence with Great, but or however
  • Give destructive comments about someone

He asked everyone in the room to raise their hands if they had said something negative about someone else in the last month that they didn’t really need to say, hands in the whole room went up. He then fined us all $1 we had to place it on the floor, proceeds went to breast cancer research. He had several very interactive and entertaining activities where we all learned how to give and receive feedback.

He suggests a really good question to ask to your coworkers and family is “How can I get better at work/home?” Unfortunately we don’t ask it enough as we don’t want to know the answer.

Marshall wrapped up the session talking a lot about while these practices are good in business they are critical in your personal life. The guy sitting next to me even mentioned how emotional he had felt during the session when talking about creating better relationships with your partners, parents and children.

All in all an awesome session.