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October Is Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Are Your Systems Protected?

SHRM Article ImageAs National Cybersecurity Awareness Month comes to a close, it is crucial that HR professionals be aware of potential cybersecurity risks and know the steps they must take to protect sensitive employee data."Technology plays an increasingly significant role in our daily lives," President Barack Obama said in a statement marking Cybersecurity Awareness Month. "The rise of the Internet has brought incredible opportunity and new ways of innovating and enhancing our way of life—but with great potential also comes heightened risk to our data."Cybersecurity attacks are occurring more frequently and becoming more serious.In September, Yahoo confirmed that hackers had compromised at least 500 million user accounts, making the incident the largest data breach from a single site in history. On Oct. 18, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer stated in a release that she remains confident of Yahoo's value and ability to keep its users despite the breach, which analysts believe might thwart th

EEOC’s New Plan Targets Gig Work, Talent Analytics

SHRM Article ImageHeads up, employers: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has approved a new strategic enforcement plan—essentially its list of priorities for the next four years. The plan addresses contingent work and the on-demand economy, people analytics in recruitment, and discrimination against Muslims, among other issues.

Retailers Scramble for Holiday Workers in Tight Labor Market

SHRM Article ImageEmployers planning to hire hundreds of thousands of holiday-season workers this year are expanding their talent acquisition channels and raising wages to fill jobs from a shrinking talent pool.

Facebook, Coca-Cola, Braun Medical Offer Paid Parental Leave Tips

SHRM Article ImageCompanies that have rolled out paid parental leave programs find it a welcome benefit but point to lessons learned about allowing intermittent leave-taking and announcing the program too far in advance of its availability, among other issues.

Apprenticeships: One Way to Create a Work-Ready Talent Pool

SHRM Article ImageApprenticeships can bridge the skills gap by training people—especially youth—for the millions of jobs that go unfilled, but the cultural stigma that still clouds such programs must be overcome, according to speakers at a recent summit in Washington, D.C. Leaders in private and public sectors attending the Global Apprenticeshps Network summit on Oct.6 discussed a renaissance in apprenticeship programs.

HR Key in Helping Employers Achieve Gender Equality

SHRM Article ImageIn many ways, it has been a watershed year for women, both on the world’s stage and in the workplace. Not only did Hillary Clinton become the first female U.S. presidential nominee—and possibly president-elect by the time this article goes to press—but working women were also a high legislative priority and a top focus in the war for talent. California and New York enacted pay equity laws in January, for example, and in August Massachusetts became the first state to legislate an outright ban on asking job candidates about their salary histories, a practice believed to perpetuate discrepancies in compensation. At the federal level, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission proposed in July that employers with 100 or more workers submit salary data along with their EEO-1 reports starting in 2018 in an effort to better address pay inequality.Meanwhile, after Netflix, Microsoft and other tech giants led the way in offering paid parental leave last year, more companies have foll

How Second City Is Changing the Conversation around Gender Equality

SHRM Article Image​Brynne Humphreys thinks it’s time to change the conversation around the gender pay gap. Instead of telling women they need to take more risks and less leave, business leaders should start talking about what they can do to level the playing field.“There’s this paradox of [people] wanting women to be more confident and negotiate better and then not reacting as well [to them] as when men do those things,” says Humphreys, vice president of client services for Second City Works, the business-to-business arm of famed The Second City improv troupe in Chicago.Second City Works has advised hundreds of corporations, including Hyatt Hotels and Procter & Gamble, using improv-based techniques that focus on key business challenges such as talent development. Its latest leadership initiative, 2095 Today, is aimed at helping organizations identify and address workplace gender inequality. The name refers to a 2014 World Economic Forum report noting that equality won’t be reached until at least 209

OSHA Issues Final Rule on Handling ACA Whistle-Blower Complaints

SHRM Article ImageA final rule on procedures for handling Affordable Care Act (ACA) retaliation complaints largely follows the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s 2013 interim rule.

How One Company's Foray into Predictive Analytics Aids Retention

SHRM Article Image​When a top employee at the Anderson Center for Autism, a private school in Staatsburg, N.Y., handed in her resignation, the school's HR department was expecting her.The HR staff had been using a predictive analytics program to help them gauge retention. "The software is so good that we were developing a retention plan for her as she was preparing to resign," said Gregg Paulk, director of information technologies for the 92-year-old nonprofit organization.After HR staff spoke with her, "she actually rescinded her resignation," he added.Paulk, who spoke at Human Resource Executive's HR Technology Conference and Exposition in Chicago recently, is among many business leaders who have found value in using predictive analytics to improve business processes and staff retention.In the 2016-2017 Sierra-Cedar HR Systems Survey, released earlier this month by the Delaware-based IT services company, researchers discovered that companies that leverage HR analytics for hiring an

Viewpoint: Are 401(k) Vesting Schedules in Need of an Update?

SHRM Article ImageWorkers’ average tenure with an employer has plummeted over recent decades while 401(k) vesting schedules have remained nearly unchanged. Adjusting the vesting time frame can help employers to address turnover issues.

Gettysburg Is a Schoolroom for Leadership Lessons

SHRM Article ImageThe Battle of Gettysburg its place in American history make it an exceptional story to use as context for necessary leadership skills in modern organizations, organizations have found.

Member Spotlight: Brad Galin, SHRM-SCP

SHRM Article ImageIn his first HR job, Brad Galin wrote policies for international theme parks. He boasts of riding 106 roller coasters around the world. Naturally, he sees some similarities to working in HR. “There are ups and downs, and sometimes it makes you sick,” says Galin, who writes a blog called RollerCoaster HR. His career path certainly has taken plenty of twists and turns. In addition to working with theme parks in China, Mexico and Brazil, he has also held HR roles with an aquarium, a family-owned printing company, a large nonprofit agency serving people with disabilities and a large public school district. And he has a consulting business on the side.He takes the same adventurous approach to volunteering with the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Although he recently moved to Michigan, he still serves as director-at-large for the Indiana State Council of SHRM, where he previously focused on diversity and technology roles. He also has volunteered with the HR Indiana Co

How Internal Coaches Can Help Organizations

SHRM Article ImageCoaching is no longer just about fixing performance issues. More companies are using it to create a pipeline of leaders and to develop managers who can coach their own teams and develop employees’ career paths, according to findings from The Conference Board’s Global Executive Coaching Survey 2016 released earlier this fall. And many companies are using coaches from within the organization rather than contracting with external consultants. For example, the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston uses internal coaches to lead a yearlong group coaching program for midlevel managers. Executive coaching was still a novelty a decade ago when The Conference Board conducted its first survey, says Amy Lui Abel, managing director of human capital at the nonprofit business membership and research group in New York City. At that time, only 18 percent relied on numerous (more than 10) internal coaches, compared with nearly 70 percent this year. The 2016 survey includes r

Defending Trade Secrets More Difficult with New Technology

SHRM Article ImageAs companies develop technologies that allow them to spy on competitors, employers should prepare to defend their trade secrets.

Texas Judge Consolidates Challenges to Overtime Rule

SHRM Article ImageA federal judge in Texas has agreed to consolidate two lawsuits aimed at stopping the overtime rule from taking effect on Dec. 1.

New California Law Targets Immigration Document Abuse

SHRM Article ImageA new addition to California’s labor code reinforces protections for workers from discrimination based on immigration status.

Seek Hard Data to Align Talent Acquisition to Business Strategy

SHRM Article ImageTalent acquisition leaders who want to show how their function contributes to organizational success should think like business leaders, work collaboratively with other departments to understand the business holistically and back up hiring plans with hard data rather than simply “feelings.”

Report: Mixed Signals Curb Use of Vacation Time

SHRM Article ImageThe uncertain vacation culture created by America’s managers has led to billions in accumulated vacation time sitting going unused. Beyond the red mark on balance sheets, not taking time off hurts employee engagement and productivity, affects talent retention, and expedites burnout—all of which hurt a company’s bottom line.

HR or Legal: Who Conducts an Investigation? And from Where?

SHRM Article ImageWhen there is a need to conduct a workplace investigation, who is the detective? If a lawyer does the work, there may be the advantage of attorney-client privilege, but employees may be more comfortable opening up to HR.

Can an Employer Reduce or Eliminate Retiree Benefits?

SHRM Article ImageThe central question in three class-action complaints filed against Honeywell International Inc. earlier this year is whether the company was obligated to continue providing retiree benefits under the terms of various collective bargaining agreements.

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