Archive for category Megatrends

Reblogged: IntraWorlds’ 5 Fragen an Tim Ackermann

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5 Fragen an Tim Ackermann, Senior Director Talent Acquisition bei PAREXEL

Von Lea-Sophie Samland am 05.02.2014 um 09:18 | Employer Branding

Tim Ackermann, Senior Director Talent Acquisition bei PAREXEL International GmbH, durfte ich auf dem World Talent Forum 2013 kennenlernen – heute steht er mir Rede und Antwort rund um die Themen Arbeitgebermarke, Generation Y und moderne Recruiting-Prozesse!

 

Inwiefern hat die Bedeutung einer starken Arbeitgebermarke in den letzten Jahren zugenommen?

Durch Wertewandel und technologische Entwicklung wird die Arbeitgebermarke für die effiziente und effektive Zielgruppenansprache immer wichtiger.

Wertewandel: GenY und folgende möchten mehr als vorhergehende Generationen für ‚coole‘ Unternehmen arbeiten. Auch hat hier das Thema Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) als Teil von ‚cool‘ einen höheren Stellenwert, aber das kann man auch als gesamtgesellschaftliche Entwicklung interpretieren.

Technologie: Zunehmende Komplexität, Allgegenwart, Geschwindigkeit und das soziale Element technologischer Entwicklungen machen Aspekte wie Markenbotschaftertum und Goodwill unverzichtbar. Das funktioniert naturgemäß nur mit einer starken und authentischen Marke.

Darüberhinaus gibt es auch ein selbstreferenzierendes Element: weil viele ihre Arbeitgebermarke noch nicht managen, habe ich einen Wettbewerbsvorteil gegenüber denjenigen, die ihre Hände in den Schoß legen.

Wie sieht die optimale Positionierung von Unternehmen gegenüber der Generation Y aus?

Darüber wurde in vielen Blogs schon viel und meiner Meinung nach genug geschrieben. Die Arbeitgebermarke sollte ja hoffentlich unverwechselbar und zum Unternehmen passend sein. Daher ist das wichtigste und für alle gültige GenY-Attribut der Arbeitgebermarke Authentizität. Wenn sich eine konservative Bank als hip darstellt oder die KFZ-Azubis am Fließband rappen, kann man das in Neudeutsch nur als #epicfail beschreiben. Die Kommentare zu den einschlägigen YouTube-Videos sprechen da auch eine deutliche Sprache.

Selbstbewusst, optimistisch und hoch motiviert oder verwöhnt, spaßorientiert und an flachen Hierarchien interessiert – wie hast du die Generation Y jenseits aller gängigen Definitionen kennengelernt?

Ja, genau so. Aber auch gut ausgebildet und neugierig. Mir ist hierbei ein anderer Aspekt wichtig. Mittlerweile erscheint es mir und einigen meiner Peers so, dass der Hype um GenY einfach zu groß wird. Zahlenmäßig ist diese Generation relativ klein, die älteren bleiben länger im Berufsleben, es ist also wichtig, auch woanders hinzuschauen. Nicht nur das Thema „Multigenerationenunternehmen“ kommt hier ins Spiel sondern beispielsweise auch die Erschließung eher unorthodoxer Zielgruppen. Erste Unternehmen stellen bspw. Azubis 40+ ein. Abgesehen davon handelt es sich bei der GenY in der Ausprägung, wie sie hier diskutiert wird, um ein spezifisches Phänomen der westlichen Hemisphäre– Globalisierung scheint in dieser Disksussion irgendwie aus dem Blickwinkel zu geraten.

Außerdem ist der momentane Fokus meiner Meinung nach zu sehr darauf gerichtet, wie sich Unternehmen sexy für die GenY machen können. Mit der Employability der GenY ist es aber in vielen Bereichen auch nicht weit her. Man sollte also auch schauen, wie man die ‚Trophy Generation‘ für die Realitäten der Arbeitswelt fit macht. Und mal ganz ehrlich: neu ist das alles nicht. Jede Generation in dem Alter war idealistisch. Die meisten Werte der GenY finden sich bspw. bei den Hippies und den Romantikern des 18./19. Jahrhunderts. Und heute wird den Ex-Hippies gesagt, dass sie sich neu auf Menschen einstellen sollen, die Ideale und Werte vertreten, die sie selber vertraten als sie jung waren. Also bitte etwas tiefer hängen…

In welchem Umfang und vor allen in welchen Bereichen musste der Recruiting-Prozess hinsichtlich dieser Zielgruppe in den letzten Jahren optimiert werden?

Der Umfang hängt davon ab, wo man steht. Geschwindigkeit und Indidvidualisierung sind in der Prozessoptimierung sicher wichtiger denn je. Weiter ausgebaut werden muß die Bildung und Nutzung von Talent Pools und von social referrals.

Inwiefern denkst du wird sich das Recruiting in den nächsten Jahren, in Bezug auf die sich dem Arbeitsmarkt nähernde Generation Z, wieder verändern müssen?

Siehe meine vorletzte Antwort. Nicht neues aber wahrscheinlich GenY². Indiz hierfür ist, dass bspw. die „Einbindung der Eltern“ – Stichwort ‚Helicopter Parents‘ – in Bewerbungsprozesse zunimmt. Selbst danach sind diese aber immer öfter dabei.

Vielen Dank, Tim!

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Social Media relevance for dummies

Need to explain why Social Media matters? A picture can say more than a thousand words.

St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, 2005

St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, 2005

St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, on March 13, 2013

St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, on March 13, 2013

Found on the NBCnews photoblog: Witnessing papal history changes with digital age

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HR Trends. No.1: Big Data

While preparing some presentations for HR and recruitment peers I researched and re-thought the trends (aka buzzwords :-)) which are currently discussed in the HR and online community. I will add my thoughts over the next weeks (hopefully not months) and start with Big Data. Also thanks to @carllsons who included this topic in his presentation at the Social Media in HR Summit a few weeks ago.

Generally speaking, Big Data is…

… a collection of data sets so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using on-hand database management tools. The challenges include capture, curation, storage, search, sharing, analysis, and visualization. The trend to larger data sets is due to the additional information derivable from analysis of a single large set of related data, as compared to separate smaller sets with the same total amount of data, allowing correlations to be found to “spot business trends, determine quality of research, prevent diseases, link legal citations, combat crime, and determine real-time roadway traffic conditions” (according to the omniscient Wikipedia).

Simply said: it’s just a huge amount of numbers to which statistical analysis tools are applied. In my view, the “only” new about Big Data is the quality of data which is now available through the ubiquitous use of technology and social media, implicating also that there is a huge quantity of data available in areas where in the past one has to use spot tests and samples. What is not new: the law of averages and statistics in general.

My experience: proper statistical thinking is new to most people and HR folks anyway, so it’s time to get your understanding of numbers right 🙂 The biggest misunderstanding that I find in business, economics and society seems that people mix-up correlation and causality (sometimes intentionally). And that empirical evidence is exactly that: evidence. Meaning that it is illegitimate to draw final conclusions on a single case/object/person from empirical correlations in data sets. I will come back to both later.

Let’s take a closer look into the application and implications of Big Data in HR:

A recent WSJ article showed some examples of how Big Data is already used by employers:

What you find there is, that the companies are working a lot with “likelihoods” to select candidates or employees. This is exactly what usually is called “discrimination” – in the negative connotation of the word. They look at a group of people, defined by a certain common criteria and draw conclusions on individuals regarding another criterion. Even if you could have some (statistical) confidence in this kind of discrimination, most Western societies tried to get rid of this kind of thinking (at least when it comes to age, gender, sexual orientation,…). While employers are very careful to link themselves to this kind of discrimination, Big Data opens the door for other sorts:

But Kenexa, which tested 30 million applicants last year for thousands of clients, has found that a lengthy commute raises the risk of attrition in call-center and fast-food jobs. It asks applicants for call-center and fast-food jobs to describe their commute by picking options ranging from “less than 10 minutes” to “more than 45 minutes.” The longer the commute, the lower their recommendation score for these jobs, says Jeff Weekley, who oversees the assessments.

So someone who is eagerly looking to find employment in a low paid job and is willing to commute considerably has a smaller chance of being offered a job in this industry.

As this example shows, use of quantitative data isn’t rocket science at all but doesn’t necessarily lead to better qualitative decisions.

While I base this argument on ethical (or corporate governance) reasons and the basics of statistics, an article in the Harvard Business Review challenges Big Data in more technical aspects. Companies lack the capacity to intelligently analyze the data and they lack the systems and data structures to provide the usable data even though such data exists.

Big Data is also one of the topics which will be discussed in the upcoming HR Tech Europe in Amsterdam. Here you find examples that Big Data is not only a trend for recruitment but also considered in reward and recognition. I am sure there are already examples where it is used for development out there.

So besides the sure fact that there will be the use of Big Data for HR purposes in the future, there are some key aspects which I think are worth considering:

  1. Data Protection: is the Big Data really anonymized? This is also one of the major concerns regarding the mother of all Big Data users: Google
  2. Illegitimate deduction and wrong assumption of correlations, which might lead to…
  3. … threats of discrimination directly or indirectly and therefore the violation of corporate governance principles.

I would be curious to get your thoughts regarding the correct and clever use of Big Data in HR – maybe we can discuss this soon at the HR Tech Europe?

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I have just seen the future of work…

… and it already arrived!

While walking the dog this morning I met another guy (surely not a millennial) with his puppy. He was on the mobile and suddenly sat down, put out some papers and started working with them while on the phone.

Please excuse the rather poor quality, but I didn’t want to intimidate someone with my iPhone. 

You find everything here:

  • ubiquitous technology
  • mobile offices
  • work-life flexibility

Only the paperwork appears so last millennium…

You think that’s nothing special? Well, I might agree, but then most publications about the ‘future of work’ are just describing the present.

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eBay’s Social Recruitment Strategy

Just before the weekend, I found this interesting example of an integrated social media recruitment approach at eBay on Business 2 Community. The article is obviously not my piece of work, but I want to share it as it’s a nice example of what practices are out there in the market today.

It might be a bit of promotion for selectminds but hey, if they own some good technology why not appreciate it?

The ROI calculation seems some kind of theoretical/vague to me. But bulletproof ROI calculation is still the weakest part of all social media recruiting and branding concepts.

So enjoy, and have a great weekend 🙂

eBay Social Recruitment

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Some thoughts about Gen Y

I just read a few articles that are related to Gen Y, and… they made me think (happens from time to time).

First Forbes.com has two success-stories of comparably young women who moved quickly into senior positions. 21-year-old Star Hughes became a business executive (ok, just real estate :-P) and Christine Park became a senior designer at Cadillac by the age of 28.

Even though these are great and inspiring examples of what could be achieved by representatives of certain groups (here women and GenY) I would technically challenge the relevance of their ‘lessons learned’. For two reasons it is just statistically invalid to take one single person’s career and extrapolate common rules or advices for everyone. This might also be one of the reasons why there seems to be the need for so many “success biographies” out there. I prefer statistically hard-wired models such as the works of Jim Collins. Second, in case of the 21 year-old Star Hughes it is also intrapersonal very dare to already derive a pattern of success as the time span and repetition of successful behaviors is just too small.

But these are just general scientific observations. Coming back to Gen Y (and beyond), based on these examples and the expectations they might raise:

  1. What will be their career look like in 15 years?
  2. Despite their single careers, will there be enough senior positions for all the remaining Gen X-ers, the Gen Y and the upcoming Gen Re (or whatever you like to call them)?
  3. If not (which is likely), will they really be satisfied with “blended lifestyles” and moving into lower paid, lower status jobs? Not everyone can open a coffee shop and lower paid jobs are usually less fun but not necessarily less stress.

There is a lot of research out there that tells us that the way we (they) work will change dramatically. I just wonder if there is also a lot of unrealistic and not- selffulfilling prophecy raised by pushing this too much (also with these kinds of role-models).

Also, there is a list of ten prejudices (?) about Gen Y by Randall S. Hansen from Quintessential Careers. The list includes arguments, why there might be some truth in these perceptions or not and what the reasons for one or the other might be. I like the list and it is quite congruent to all the research done out there. Maybe you first think a while about these perceptions before you follow the link below:

  1. Spoiled/Entitled
  2. Lazy
  3. Poor Work Ethic
  4. Little Respect for Authority
  5. Too Self-Centered and Individualistic
  6. Overinflated/Unrealistic Expectations
  7. Not Committed to Work
  8. No Loyalty to Employers
  9. Lacking in Social Skills
  10. Needy

Enjoy :-): Perception vs. Reality: 10 Truths About The Gen Y Workforce

Update: Yesterday I gave a presentation in front of HR professionals about demographical change etc. One of the participants shared the observation that some of the GenY-ers (and beyond) show “typical” traits with regards to career, blended lifestyles, etc. But they seem to feel pressured (by peers, parents or just by knowing what is expected from their generation) towards behaving this way, which causes significant stress. I haven’t been aware of that, but it perfectly links to this post – and examples like the two above might also contribute to this external pressure. 

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