March 2011 24
CareerBuilder recently sat down with Tom Daley, President of Volt Workforce Solutions, to discuss his leadership philosophy. In the following excerpt, Daley shares the lessons he’s learned in 30 years at Volt, including why empowerment is essential and the most important decision he’s ever made.
What is your philosophy as it relates to people and their impact on your daily business?
Looks like someone’s been taking her Boniva! (Or whatever its employment industry equivalent is, at least...)
According to CareerBuilder and USA TODAY’s latest job forecast, the employment outlook is starting to feel like its younger, more vibrant self again.
Nearly three-in-ten employers (28 percent) reported they hired full-time, permanent employees in the first quarter of 2011, the highest since the first quarter of 2008, according to the survey of nearly 2,800 hiring managers nationwide. The same amount expect to add full-time positions in the second quarter as well.
The findings come as little surprise to CareerBuilder's CEO, Matt Ferguson, who says in a press release that job listings on CareerBuilder.com have increased across all categeories – from healthcare and technology to manufacturing. “While employers are keeping a close eye on world events, their confidence levels in regard to recruitment have remained intact,” Ferguson said. “The survey points to continued, measured gains over the next three months. As the nation moves toward greater financial stability, more employers are investing in talent for the long-term.”
So what's in store for the job market in the coming months - and how does it compare to previous months? Check out the highlights from the latest survey, including insight into what concerns both employers and job seekers right now. (You can also go here to download the complete forecast.)
- Added Headcount Exceeds Expectations in Q1 2011: For the seventh consecutive quarter, hiring has exceeded expectations. When asked back in December, 23 percent of employers said they expected to hire full-time, permanent employees in the first quarter of 2011. As for March, however, the number of employers that actually added headcount reached 28 percent. And while 10 percent of employers decreased headcount in the first quarter 2011, the number is still an improvement from 12 percent who did so last year.
- Employers Expect to Maintain Momentum in Q2 2011: As for second quarter expectations, 28 percent of employers said they plan to increase their full-time, permanent headcount (but if current survey trends persist, that number could very well be higher in three months). The number already exceeds the 24 percent of employers who increased headcount during this time last year.
- Competition for Highly Skilled Talent Increases: Concerned about losing high performers as the economy improves? You should be.
Even though it meant missing what was surely another riveting "celebrity" performance on Dancing With The Stars, participating in CareerBuilder's first ever Twitter chat for job seekers and recruiters was more than worth it. (No offense, Ralph Macchio.)
Using the hashtag #cbjobchat, anyone on Twitter was invited to follow and particpate in the chat led by @CareerBuilder. To begin the discussion, @CareerBuilder posed five different questions on the subject of résumés (last night's theme) to job seekers and recruiters, and then let everybody offer their own advice and thoughts.
If you joined last night's chat, thanks again for participating. We're really excited by the turnout and the great conversations that came out of it. We're hoping both job seekers and recruiters will benefit from these chats - and use them as a way to exchange advice and gain a better understanding of the other side's perspective.
We’ll have the transcript of last night's #cbjobchat posted soon, but here’s a quick recap of what was asked and some of the excellent answers we received. (Believe me, there are many more than can fit here.)
We asked job seekers:
- Do you include an objective on your résumé or use a professional summary instead?
“Personally I use a summary. For high schoolers, whom I’ve worked with in the past-I had them do really specific objectives.” – @srlaugtug
- Do you try to fit all of your expertise on 1 page or are you OK with it spilling into 2 pages?
“If e-mailing directly I do 2 pages. If ATS or online 1 page hitting keywords.” – @AshShute
- Is your résumé posted online? Why or why not?
“Yes my résumé is online because if I don’t post it then how do I expect recruiters/hiring managers to find me.” – @collegegraduate
- What does your résumé say about you? Or what do you hope it says about you?
“My résumé says what I want it to say to the employer Im applying to. Meaning, I tailor it to what they are looking for.” – @srlaugtug
If you've seen the recent reports that more employees are quitting their jobs as the economy improves, then hearing that employee loyalty nationwide is at a three-year low should be about as shocking as, well...hearing that Charlie Sheen is getting a reality TV show. (I mean, we all saw this coming, right? Well, maybe not all of us...Keep reading.)
According to a new study from MetLife, not only is employee loyalty at its lowest point since 2008, but some employers evidently aren’t aware of this fact. (Awkward!)
According to the study, 47 percent of employees report feeling a very strong loyalty to their employers, while 51 percent of employers said they felt employees were very loyal. You can read the details of the study here, but below are some of the larger implications that you as an employer need to consider:
Certain benefits matter more than you think: While employers are generally correct in thinking that salary and wages are the biggest drivers of employee loyalty, many underestimate the role retirement benefits and non-medical benefits (such as dental, disability and life insurance) play in employee satisfaction, too.
Benefits are only as good as how well you communicate them: Maybe it’s not the lack of benefits that irks employees, but the lack of awareness. Another finding was that more than half of all employees (55 percent) believe the communication they receive from their employers regarding benefits is either unclear or too infrequent. If you’re doing a poor job of communicating your employee benefits and how employees can take advantage of them, you might as well not offer them at all.
While you were busy not being at all pretentious, failing to impress anyone in Arizona, wondering when these two became friends or deciding that even that annoying "five dollar footlooooong" jingle can't get in the way of true love...here's what was happening in the world of workforce management this week.
- Groundbreaking evidence shows employees don’t respond well to pay cuts. In a new article for Slate, writer Ray Fisman explores the research that indicates that while pay cuts lower productivity, raises don’t do much to boost it, either. (Slate)
- Seeing co-workers at the gym can be
awkwardawesome. So long as spandex stays out of the picture, working out alongside colleagues can be a great team-building experience, argues Wall Street Journal writer Sue Shellenbarger. (WSJ)
- Being popular is a blessing and an HR curse. Facebook received 250,000 job applications in 2010, AllFacebook.com revealed this week. Awesome for Facebook but maybe less so for its HR department, which has its work cut out for it sorting those applications…(Shameless self-promotion alert: ) Guess they should’ve used CareerBuilder’s free screeners! (AllFacebook.com)
- Employees who work in Canada are about to go “om.” Justice Canada in Ottawa is participating in a taxpayer-funded program that uses the Buddhist concept of mindfulness to help employees cope with personal and workplace pressures. (Vancouver Sun)
- Young professionals want to live the Google life. Out of 150 employers, Google topped the list of companies young professionals want to work for the most. Facebook must be dying to know how many applications they received last year… (WSJ)
- Sometimes, there’s just no satisfaction in finding out you were right…A new CareerBuilder survey shows that women believe men earn more than they earn. Turns out, they’re right. Really, really right. (The Hiring Site)
- Perks are back! (Except for that one that about getting pay raises.) A new survey by Accountemps shows that while companies are still hesitant to increase employee pay, they’re trying to compensate in other ways to retain and attract employees. But is it working? (Cliffhanger!) (MSNBC)
- Someone must’ve missed the memo about the Accountemps survey. Radio talk show host Howard Stern is suing his employer, SiriusXM Radio, for failing to pay him the bonus he believes his contract entitles him to. (MSNBC)
- It’s not just men who are clueless about women. Employers all over the world are, too. A new survey shows that employers worldwide lack a strategy to develop women leaders. (Typical employers. Am I right, ladies?) (FoxBusiness)
- Pay-for-performance programs can end up costing employers. Pay-for-performance programs can bring out the happy, productive and motivated worker in every employee and lead to better business results for employers. OR…they can do the exact opposite of that. (Globe and Mail)
Many organizations have a policy prohibiting their employees from discussing salaries with each other. We can safely assume that employees disregard plenty company policies on a regular basis. Sneaking in a few minutes late. Checking Facebook every once in a while – or maybe all the time. You might think salary discussions are another example of employees ignoring their bosses, but that might not be the case.
“There’s an evolution going on,” says Jennifer Prosek, author of the new book Army of Entrepreneurs: Create an Engaged and Empowered Workforce for Exceptional Business Growth, in reference to today’s workforce. “If you look at what new entrants into the workforce are looking for in terms of jobs, lives, careers and what we’re taught about the world of work have changed.”
As the CEO of public relations and financial communications consultancy CJP Communications, Prosek has noticed that today’s workers want more responsibility, and today’s employers should be receptive to that desire.
Her philosophy is that deciding who to hire is less about finding a great employee and more about finding a great business partner - or, rather, a fellow entrepreneur. “The new generation of workers expects more responsibility early on,” Prosek told me. “They’re fearless and aren’t as willing to stick things out and do things just because their bosses say they should.”
While Prosek drew on her own experiences to write Army of Entrepreneurs, her observations are not limited to what she sees going on at her organization: a recently released Career Advisory Board study indicates that there’s an overall discrepancy between what hiring managers think Millennials value most as they enter the workforce (higher pay) and what Millennials actually say they value most (meaningful work).
It is crucial that hiring managers today understand the shift that has taken place in workers’ attitudes, especially if they expect to build their army of entrepreneurs.
Recruit now. Hire later.
While “any employee can be entrepreneurial,” Prosek says hiring managers should keep an eye out for “people who exhibit excitement about bringing their own ideas to life” when trying to identify potential entrepreneurs – which, by the way, is all the time.
Hiring managers need to take a proactive approach to recruitment and constantly be on the lookout for the next entrepreneur; otherwise, waiting until a hiring need opens up couldresult in a panicked hire. “Panicked hires typically aren’t successful, particularly if you’re building a typical DNA [for your employment brand]. Everyone you hire is a reflection of that brand.”
Not only can a panicked hire be a costly mistake for employers, Prosek says that panicked hiring doesn’t reflect well with employees, either. Employees can sense when they've been hired out of desperation, which significantly lowers their excitement about the company; whereas employees who are courted over a period of time by prospective employers go into their new jobs feeling special “because they are.”
Prosek says recruiting candidates early on and staying in contact with them is key to building that talent pipeline - and ensuring they will feel special when the time comes to actually hire. Some of the ways employers can keep candidates engaged include sending them quarterly company updates via email, going to career fairs and networking events, and, not least of all, utilizing social networking. “If you have social media presence and blog, these things make it incredibly easy to stay in touch with your talent pipeline.”