Most organizations need to work on how they develop and articulate their employer brand strategies. Just over half of employers claim to have an employer brand strategy (51%), a fifth (19%) are in the process of revising one, and 24% are working towards one. That’s what Bernard Hodes Group learned from our new research, called The Growing Value of Employer Brands.
Of those employers that claim to have a strategy, the average age of it is 4.3 years. The results suggest that many employers are using strategies pre-dating the Great Recession. Relying on an old strategy is a recipe for disaster given the changes in workers’ attitudes wrought by turbulent labor markets and the rise of new channels such as social media.
The survey polled 175 employers across the U.S. in a spectrum of industries from education to manufacturing. About 240 employees were surveyed and were not necessarily employed by any of the participating employers. When comparing the two sets of data, there are some stark disconnects (see the graphic in the upper right). Some of the most noteworthy include:
- Only 25% of employers indicated that compensation is one of the most important attributes of an employer brand, compared with 64% of employees.
- Job security was ranked highly by 41% of employees, but only 21% of employers.
- Just 15% of employers felt that recognition is important in attracting new hires, while 33% of employees ranked it highly.
- Nearly half of employers (44%) felt career growth and advancement opportunities are important to attracting talent, while just over a quarter of talent (27%) agreed.
Looking at the data, one gets the impression that many employers may have lost common sense. keep reading…
Just in time for Administrative Professionals Day, CompData says salaries for executive assistants, admins, and other office support staff are inching up.
After years of stagnant pay, CompData’s BenchmarkPro survey found wages up on the order of 2 percent. Executive assistants, among the highest paid, now average $51,600 per year, up from $50,200 in 2010. Executive secretaries saw a 2.4 percent rise: $45,000 in 2010 to $46,100 in 2011. Receptionists increased 2.6 percent between 2010 and 2011, to $27,900.
“Although salaries for many administrative professionals increased in 2011, the rate of increase for most of these jobs was less than the 2011 average rate of inflation reported in the Consumer Price Index of 3.2 percent,” said Amy Kaminski, director of marketing for Compdata Surveys, a pay and benefits survey data provider. keep reading…
You get what you pay for. You sometimes get less, but you never get more. – Something I heard a long, long time ago, somewhere
One stone for two birds?
I don’t think so.
I know all you hiring managers and staffing officials out there would like your recruiters to be expert sourcers and your sourcers to be expert recruiters.
I know you all would like to kill two birds with one stone, but I can tell you right now, right here, it’s not going to happen.
It’s not going to happen because the two types of personality types are generally not found (in one person) in an organization.
They’re found outside organizations in the form of third party recruiters who have been cutting this mustard for years.
Now that we’ve given this brave and heroic special set the recognition and laurel crown they so richly deserve, let me tell you why you’re not likely to find these people inside your organization. keep reading…
If you look at the most admired and successful companies all around the world, those who have figured this out and found a way to get the best talent, top the list. Apple was named the most admired company in America in 2011 by Forbes for the fourth year in a row due to its “blistering speed of product development.” Berkshire Hathaway has been on the Forbes list of most-admired organizations year after year. They are known for their keen eye for buying organizations at a discount and running them extremely efficiently.
From Southwest Airlines’ service and efficiency focus to the exceptional brand management of Procter and Gamble, there are many organizations who share the “Most Admired Company” status based on a myriad of different business concepts and classifications.
More importantly, whether selected for product management, exceptional service, investing, or for any other varied categories, these organizations all have one thing in common. They take the talent game seriously and make finding and growing the best talent a top priority. Do you think Apple employs good product managers? They are known to have the best product managers in the world today. How did they get the talent? They, like others in the group, got the best talent by either developing it from within or acquiring it from outside. The bottom line: talent wins.
It isn’t easy however to get where these “Most Admired” organizations are, and it’s not easy to stay there. There are several common mistakes that can keep an organization from reaching its potential and kill the chance of it ever joining the list of most-admired companies. keep reading…
Even after cutting their way through 2011, pharmaceutical companies expect to make more cuts this year to their salesforces as they struggle to adapt to the changing marketplace for their products.
A survey by consultants Hay Group found that half of Big Pharma, as the major drug companies are collectively called, believe themselves overstaffed, with many planning to eliminate from 6 to 15 percent of their sales staffs. The consulting group’s 2011 Annual Study of Sales Force Effectiveness says only 5 percent of the the other companies in the life sciences industry plan cuts.
“While smaller, more specialized companies appear to be aggressively hiring, Big Pharma is still fixated on continual cuts and retrenchment, as these organizations seek to find their way in an uncertain world,” says an article by Hay Group practice leaders and survey authors.
The article in Pharm Exec, which distills the findings in the proprietary report, says a “dramatic structural change” is underway in the pharmaceutical marketplace, but bemoans the industry’s response. “While change is championed publicly,” the authors write, “recruiting still focuses almost exclusively on those with industry experience.” keep reading…
Everyone knows what it means to reboot your computer, but what does it mean when you reboot your entire workforce?
It’s no secret that the speed of change in business is incredibly fast. And as a result products, operational processes, customer expectations, and even business models are constantly changing. Every time one of these business factors is upgraded, it simultaneously requires the raising of the needed skills and the expected performance levels of the employees. Whenever skill requirements and performance levels are raised, the normal practice is to expect your current workforce to adapt and to meet those higher expectations through additional training.
But what would you do in a business situation where instead of the occasional need for incremental change, you were faced with a business environment that demanded both continuous and rapid change. You could call it chaotic change: a situation where products, customers, competitors, operational processes, and performance expectations needed to be constantly improved to the point where even with training, most of your current employees simply couldn’t handle it. When corporate leadership insists that in order to be successful “everything must change,” should “everything” include changing or “rebooting” the entire workforce?
What Does Rebooting Your Workforce Mean?
There are two categories of rebooting the workforce. The first is a situation where the current workforce has simply failed in its performance. keep reading…
Great customer experiences depend heavily on companies creating a great experience for their employees. Executive VP Jim Bush acknowledged this relationship from the outset of his quest to ramp up customer satisfaction at American Express. The company polled existing customer care agents to find what would boost the quality of their service. Among their answers were improved incentives, more career mobility, more flexible hours, and streamlined processes.
In response, American Express increased job flexibility and created new job categories so agents could progress through four levels rather than remaining stuck in one. The company also changed its compensation plan, allowing agents to more easily earn bonuses based on customer service scores.
In addition, the company changed the job title from customer care representative to customer care professional. Agents got business cards for the first time.
These were more than symbolic gestures. Agents no longer merely recite company scripts, but use their discretion to figure out how American Express products can help customers solve problems. That’s made the job harder in a way. Agents like Teresa Tate, who works out of an American Express service center in Phoenix, now have to think on their feet. But Tate wouldn’t have it any other way. “We are getting more and more power to make the decisions at our level,” she says.
Tate, who used to run a restaurant, takes calls from AmEx cardholders who operate small businesses. She is now freer to share her wisdom and her concern for these customers. “I genuinely feel like I’m in this company’s finance department,” she says of her callers. “Having been in small business myself, you need that support.”
This sort of passion and compassion for customers translates into high levels of service, into reciprocal relationships. keep reading…
I am worth $1.83 million.
No, seriously, I am — at least, that’s what www.humanforsale.com told me. I took their survey and the resulting value on my person was nearly $2 million. Of course, I’d like to think that I am priceless. (Waiting while you all vomit…) Try it for yourself and see what you’d go for on eBay…
But getting serious (and because that site doesn’t take into account the fact that I’m a sourcer) — let’s talk about what sourcing is worth. What are you, as a professional people-hunter/sourcer/search ninja actually worth? keep reading…
You’ve heard quite a few different suggestions as how to take a dent out of the hefty U.S. unemployment rate, but here’s one you may not have heard: pay people less, and more. Kevin Kruse says paying people a lower base salary and a bigger performance bonus would do wonders for the job market.
Kruse is the co-author of We: How to Increase Performance and Profit Through Full Engagement. Our conversation lasts about seven minutes, below. keep reading…
Apple in Sydney
In Part 2 of this case study on Apple’s talent management practices, I look at its approach to innovation, compensation, and benefits, careerpathing, and online recruitment (its career site). Some approaches discussed are unique to sub-factions within Apple, as would be expected in any organization of significant size. It’s also quite rare for organizations that design, manufacture, and sell through direct retail to have consistent approaches across all units.
Talent Management Lessons To Learn and Copy (continued)
You should not be surprised to learn that the firm that made the term “think different” a brand uses talent management approaches that are well outside the norm. In addition to the lessons presented in Part 1, some approaches other firms can learn from Apple include: keep reading…
“‘Niceness’ — in the form of the trait of agreeableness –does not appear to pay.”
Not at all. In fact, it costs to be agreeable, especially if you’re a man. How much? On average, $9,772 annually, says a study presented today to the Academy of Management, meeting in Texas.
Three researchers analyzed 20 years of data collected in three different surveys of some 10,000 workers to find that men, and to a lesser extent, women rated as agreeable earned less than their more disagreeable colleagues.
A fourth survey, conducted by the researchers themselves using students acting as HR managers, found that, with the only difference among candidates for an entry-level, fast-track position into management being their agreeableness, “agreeable candidates were less likely to be recommended for advancement.”
Gender plays a role in this, note the researchers in their aptly titled paper, Do Nice Guys – and Gals – Really Finish Last? The Joint Effects of Sex and Agreeableness on Income. However, the income gap between agreeable and disagreeable women, at $1,828, is far less than it is for men. keep reading…
Doctor pay is about flat, but psychiatrists’ compensation is up 11.5%.
That’s from a new Medicus Firm survey of 2,339 physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants in the U.S, about two-thirds of whom are in a practice, with about a third in a residency or fellowship.
Tampa General Hospital
More on doctor pay follows in the chart at the bottom of this post. Before that, these other tidbits from Medicus, a medical-recruiting firm with 25 recruiters.
- 75% of respondents say they get inquiries about three times weekly about jobs.
- Networking with colleagues (36%) was cited as the best resources for hearing of new opportunities, with recruiting agencies second at 29%. Physician job boards were just behind recruiting agencies, with journal advertisements cited the least.
- Doctors, by far, want to be contacted by email, not by phone or text.
The chart below shows pay, not including benefits, and not including resident or fellow income. keep reading…
Two good news developments for colleges and their students: starting salary offers are up , and a new Facebook app to help career centers promote jobs officially launches.
First, the salary news.
The National Association of Colleges and Employers reported Wednesday that the average starting salary for newly minted college graduates is $51,018. That’s up 4.8 percent from last year’s $48,661.
It’s the third time the quarterly NACE salary survey has reported an increase. It contrasts with 2010, when average starting offers were below those in 2009.
“The steady increases in starting salary offers we’re seeing this year is a good indication that the job market for new college graduates is gathering strength,” says Marilyn Mackes, NACE executive director.
Engineering graduates saw some of the biggest increases — and biggest salaries generally. Petroleum engineering graduates got average offers of $80,849, up 8.1 percent over the summer 2010 survey. The average offer to computer engineering graduates rose 7.6 percent to $64,499.
While their starting salaries were much lower, even students in humanities and social science programs saw increases. keep reading…
Several years ago, as I was preparing to head off for a long weekend hiking in the Yosemite backcountry, I got a call from the CEO.
“Why won’t you be reachable?” he wanted to know. He just read the email about my being out of touch with the office.
Because, I started to explain, there are no cell towers or service in the middle of the wilderness. He cut me off with a curt, “Maybe you should vacation somewhere else.”
An isolated incident? Not anymore. Today, says a Manpower survey, nearly two-thirds of the responding workers at least sometimes get emails in their off-hours from bosses who expect a reply.
“It’s now taken for granted that everyone has to check their work email during the weekend,” says Monika Morrow, SVP for Manpower’s Right Management unit.
That’s most true for exempt workers, who likely made up the bulk of the 569 survey respondents. Non-exempt workers, however, have to be paid. Maybe not for every contact, but, as we’ll see in a moment, more often than not. keep reading…
Even though we are in an economic down cycle and unemployment in the U.S. is hovering around 10%, recruiters are still struggling to find people with the skills and experience their hiring managers are looking for.
Partly this is driven by the commonly held assumption that these skilled and experienced people have been affected by the recession and are actually in the job market. Recruiters know this is not the case and that many candidates have become even more difficult to find and entice away from a secure position.
While demand for lesser-experienced, educated, and skilled candidates has slacked, it has risen for those with higher-level skills. Many firms are trying to replace the employees they had with moderate skills or who were in learning roles, with people already accomplished in their profession. keep reading…
eFinancialCareers reports that half the bankers and finance professionals it surveyed expect bonuses this year will be the same or less than they got last year.
Of course that means that half of Wall Street is expecting a bigger year-end bonus; better than 70 percent bigger, say 7 percent.
Market conditions, the Dodd-Frank financial industry regulation overhaul, and restraint by the firms themselves, were cited by the survey respondents as responsible for limiting bonuses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has been up and down, though it has been climbing steadily since late September. And after the public reaction to the bonus disclosure of the last couple years, it’s not a surprise that firms are tightening up.
Those most optimistic about their bonuses are younger Street workers. Of those with 15 or more years experience, 38 percent are bracing for no or lower bonuses this year.
In reporting the results of the global survey, eFinancialCareers says compensation is a particular challenge for Wall Street firms. “It’s never an easy balance when retention continues to be an issue,” says Constance Melrose, eFinancialCareers North America managing director. “In fact, nine percent of those expecting fatter payouts said the primary factor was switching employers.”
Since May, almost a third of IT recruiters have had to sweeten their offers to tech professionals in order to get them to sign on with a new company.
The No. 1 sweetener, as might be expected, is more money. But flexible working arrangements, including telecommuting, and commitments to new technologies, also rank high as talent attractors.
“Money is important,” says Tom Silver, senior VP/North America for Dice. But other incentives can be compelling, he adds, especially to those candidates who live in metro areas, where telecommuting might be worth more than a few extra dollars.
Workplace flexibility “is a big deal,” says Silver.
Dice released the results of a late August survey of 1,357 recruiters, consultants, and staffing firms who look for IT professionals on Dice.com.
Kenexa CEO Rudy Karsan
HR software maker Kenexa will have a lot to talk about at its annual Kenexa World Conference later this month in Philadelphia.
That’s because Kenexa announced today that it has agreed to acquire compensation specialist Salary.com in an all cash offer for $80 million, or $4.07 per share.
According to a press release from Kenexa, “The agreement has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of both companies, and Salary.com’s board intends to recommend that the Salary.com stockholders tender their shares in the offer.”
Salary.com, based in Massachusetts, makes software that helps businesses and individuals manage pay and performance, and, is very well-known in the HR space. Kenexa says that it expects to close the transaction for Salary.com in the fourth quarter of 2010. keep reading…
I seldom use the word hate. As a kid I was scolded by my father if he heard me or my brothers use it. While I may dislike the Dodgers, tea baggers, and Simon Cowell, I wouldn’t say I “hate” them. There is one exception, one I share with many recruiters: I hate the compensation department. While there are a few departments in a few corporations I respect and the people in most compensation functions are nice, way too many seem to be oblivious of the many ways that they negatively impact recruiting performance.
I just returned from ERE’s Spring Expo in San Diego, California, where hundreds of recruiters were upbeat and positive (quite possibly the most upbeat in several years.) Regardless of the subject being discussed, the outlook by nearly all was optimistic; that is, until the compensation department was mentioned. Anytime the conversation touched on the working relationship between compensation and recruiting, the tone of the conversation turned darker. keep reading…