3Sixty Insights

3Sixty Insights

The buying cycle for enterprise software and technology shouldn't be a power struggle between departments. 3Sixty Insights is a research firm providing deep understanding of how to bridge the gap in perception and priorities between stakeholders. Through our research, we unearth strategic approaches for streamlining the decision-making process, successfully managing solutions, and maximizing value from business software and technology investments.

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#HRTechChat Isolved Lina + Andy 11 21 22 - Edited (online - Audio - Converter.com)
Yesterday
#HRTechChat Isolved Lina + Andy 11 21 22 - Edited (online - Audio - Converter.com)
This past summer, isolved acquired AAP, an administrative services organization (ASO) and significant member of isolved's large network of similar companies using isolved's software-as-a-service solution for human capital management to carry out part or all of HR for their clients. Demonstrating why AAP is an especially good match for the vendor, this in-network acquisition underscores several of isolved's strengths. Joining me on the video podcast to explain were Andy Osborne, who was CEO of AAP for 20 years, and Lina Tonk, who has been with isolved for many years herself, becoming the organization's chief marketing officer shortly after her previous appearance on #HRTechChat. This acquisition of AAP reflects an important element of isolved's growth strategy. Bringing members of this network fully under the isolved brand is typically smooth and straightforward for these ASOs, professional employer organizations (PEOs), payroll service bureaus, and similar providers. Already using isolved's solution, they see business tending to continue as usual, and easily, for their clients. In the process, isolved grows in a highly sustainable way. In recent years isolved has built a wraparound ecosystem designed to cultivate this network. Firsthand, I've witnessed extra-exemplary ASOs and PEOs et al. from this network receive public recognition at isolved's annual user conference. As for AAP, infusing its culture into isolved's proved intuitive, a natural step benefiting from the strength of relationships between leaders at both organization. "Andy and I go way back," Lina said. "From the moment they deployed the isolved platform, I remember thinking, 'They will be such a good fit for us. And, when he made the decision to move into an acquisition with us, we knew that he had checked every single box to ask, 'Are my customers going to be okay? Is my team going to be okay?' They built such a strong culture for their customers that, as we transfer them through, you can see it; you can live and breathe it." Lina's words make lots of sense as you hear Andy speak of looking past just the paycheck. "We see through the paycheck. We look past the electronic file. We try to take into consideration every day, what we did that impacted the person behind what was printed on the check or what was in an electronic file. We want to understand the impact if we didn't get our job right. If we missed the child support or the direct deposit, you know that those things are key. That is the culture that we built." The story of AAP's relationship with isolved is a powerful anecdote speaking not only to the cultural fit between the two, but also the usability and capability of the vendor's cloud software for HCM. "We started reviewing the software options that were out there in 2014," Andy said. "The platform that we were on at the time was not meeting client demand. It was not evolving and developing at the speed that the market required." In 2016, AAP made the selection to move to the isolved platform, "which checked all the boxes for all of the things that we needed." So superior was isolved for AAP's needs that, just to be sure, Andy asked his team to re-analyze all the isolved competitors that AAP had considered. "After two reviews of everybody else, isolved still came out as the clear front runner." Incidentally, one of those needs stemmed from Andy's decision early in his tenure as CEO at AAP to target quick-service restaurants (QSRs), a vertical market that eventually accounted for approximately 65 percent of AAP's client base. This aligns with goals at isolved, which targets QSRs, too, with a solution especially well-tailored for their challenges in HCM. As usual, the blog entry captures only a sliver of the depth of thought and conversation on display on the #HRTechChat video podcast. Do yourselves a favor and watch this episode, a very deep dive into what it takes to make an acquisition of this kind successful.
#HRTechChat Isolved Lina + Andy 11 21 22 - Edited (online - Audio - Converter.com)
Yesterday
#HRTechChat Isolved Lina + Andy 11 21 22 - Edited (online - Audio - Converter.com)
This past summer, isolved acquired AAP, an administrative services organization (ASO) and significant member of isolved's large network of similar companies using isolved's software-as-a-service solution for human capital management to carry out part or all of HR for their clients. Demonstrating why AAP is an especially good match for the vendor, this in-network acquisition underscores several of isolved's strengths. Joining me on the video podcast to explain were Andy Osborne, who was CEO of AAP for 20 years, and Lina Tonk, who has been with isolved for many years herself, becoming the organization's chief marketing officer shortly after her previous appearance on #HRTechChat. This acquisition of AAP reflects an important element of isolved's growth strategy. Bringing members of this network fully under the isolved brand is typically smooth and straightforward for these ASOs, professional employer organizations (PEOs), payroll service bureaus, and similar providers. Already using isolved's solution, they see business tending to continue as usual, and easily, for their clients. In the process, isolved grows in a highly sustainable way. In recent years isolved has built a wraparound ecosystem designed to cultivate this network. Firsthand, I've witnessed extra-exemplary ASOs and PEOs et al. from this network receive public recognition at isolved's annual user conference. As for AAP, infusing its culture into isolved's proved intuitive, a natural step benefiting from the strength of relationships between leaders at both organization. "Andy and I go way back," Lina said. "From the moment they deployed the isolved platform, I remember thinking, 'They will be such a good fit for us. And, when he made the decision to move into an acquisition with us, we knew that he had checked every single box to ask, 'Are my customers going to be okay? Is my team going to be okay?' They built such a strong culture for their customers that, as we transfer them through, you can see it; you can live and breathe it." Lina's words make lots of sense as you hear Andy speak of looking past just the paycheck. "We see through the paycheck. We look past the electronic file. We try to take into consideration every day, what we did that impacted the person behind what was printed on the check or what was in an electronic file. We want to understand the impact if we didn't get our job right. If we missed the child support or the direct deposit, you know that those things are key. That is the culture that we built." The story of AAP's relationship with isolved is a powerful anecdote speaking not only to the cultural fit between the two, but also the usability and capability of the vendor's cloud software for HCM. "We started reviewing the software options that were out there in 2014," Andy said. "The platform that we were on at the time was not meeting client demand. It was not evolving and developing at the speed that the market required." In 2016, AAP made the selection to move to the isolved platform, "which checked all the boxes for all of the things that we needed." So superior was isolved for AAP's needs that, just to be sure, Andy asked his team to re-analyze all the isolved competitors that AAP had considered. "After two reviews of everybody else, isolved still came out as the clear front runner." Incidentally, one of those needs stemmed from Andy's decision early in his tenure as CEO at AAP to target quick-service restaurants (QSRs), a vertical market that eventually accounted for approximately 65 percent of AAP's client base. This aligns with goals at isolved, which targets QSRs, too, with a solution especially well-tailored for their challenges in HCM. As usual, the blog entry captures only a sliver of the depth of thought and conversation on display on the #HRTechChat video podcast. Do yourselves a favor and watch this episode, a very deep dive into what it takes to make an acquisition of this kind successful.
#HRTechChat Enavrio: "Is Technology Vendor Selection Really Just about Technology Vendor Selection?"
Nov 22 2022
#HRTechChat Enavrio: "Is Technology Vendor Selection Really Just about Technology Vendor Selection?"
When exactly should vendor selection really start? Is it ever just about vendor selection? Many times, employers should step back, rethink assumptions, and consider whether vendor selection even is the right path. Whatever ails their HCM or impedes them from achieving their vision may be traceable to something other than technology or whatever vendor may already be deployed. This episode of the video podcast is a brainchild of sorts. It stems from a conversation at the HR Technology Conference & Expo with Brenda Laughlin and Brian Turk, managing partners at Enavrio. "Is technology vendor selection really just about technology vendor selection?" I asked. And here we are now, the three of us, on #HRTechChat to explore the answer to this seemingly circular question. Enavrio is "a global consulting collective of the best and brightest HR and HR technology consultants," Brian stated near the outset of the recorded chat. Working with independent contractors, freelancers and, also, boutique consulting firms, Enavrio has a front row seat when it comes to seeing how technology vendor selection plays out. When and why employers determine that they need a change in their HCM technology provider is a complex discussion with many layers and variables. The direction of their decision-making is fraught with pitfalls. "Ideally, we have the HR strategy somewhat formulated, we know what the business is trying to accomplish, and we know how the HR strategy is linked to the business objectives," Brenda said. "Today, technology is just an integral part of almost every strategy, every piece of HR. And to ignore the technology piece and have it as an afterthought is a mistake," just as to reflexively "lead with the technology is a mistake, because oftentimes technology doesn't even solve the problem." As can be imagined, our discussion meandered smack-dab into 3Sixty Insights' own core focus: understanding the evolving decision-making process in enterprise software. For one, it's important for buying organizations to advocate for themselves. When it comes to their needs, "it's a little bit risky to completely rely on the vendor from sales to implementation," Brian said. "Ideally, you have some way of owning that as the client and seeing it through as the client." Longtime viewers may recall that Brenda was a guest on the podcast in late summer 2021. Here's a link. It was a pleasure to have Brenda back, this time with Brian to discuss an at once timely and perennial topic. Any organization rethinking its approach to HCM would do well to view this episode.
#HRTechChat: Jamie Aitken, Vice President of HR Transformation at Betterworks
Nov 21 2022
#HRTechChat: Jamie Aitken, Vice President of HR Transformation at Betterworks
“Nobody wakes up in the middle of the night going, ‘Oh, great, tomorrow is my performance review,” said Jamie Aitken in a moment of light-hearted sarcasm during this episode of #HRTechChat. My latest guest on our video podcast, Jamie is vice president of HR Transformation at Betterworks. In 2017, Adobe published a report titled "Performance Reviews Get a Failing Grade." The results to the associated survey painted a bleak picture. Startlingly, 22 percent of respondents admitted to having cried after their performance review. From the same survey, 58 percent of respondents said performance reviews are stressful, and 37 percent began searching for employment elsewhere following a performance review. One-fifth of respondents were so impacted by their performance review that they acted on a decision to quit immediately afterward. “Why are we doing this?" Jamie asked. "It's stressful not just for employees, but for people managers. Traditional performance management doesn’t even move the needle when it comes to performance or productivity.” It really doesn't. And it really doesn't matter that the results to Adobe's survey are from nearly six years ago. In the time that's passed traditional performance management has surely become even more anachronistic. The old way of doing performance management is, in fact, antithetical to the implicit goal of any company attempting to track and measure their employees' performance: to improve it. Providing evidence of a viable alternative is Betterworks' own report: "2022 Global HR Research Report: The State of Performance Enablement." Surveying 2,500 employees and managers at a wide range of employers, the vendor found that respondents who were indeed users of Betterworks saw a 25 percent improvement in employee engagement and 44 percent increase in employees' willingness to exert discretionary effort on the job. Betterworks’ term for this alternative is modern performance enablement. Jamie and I spoke at length on the idea: to dispense with standalone annual employee performance reviews in favor of promoting continuous year-round conversations between managers and their team members. This building of rapport may culminate in a much more meaningful and empathetic annual retrospective on employees' performance informed by the substance of these conversations. As you can imagine, modern performance enablement is also a huge factor in HR transformation. First, the efficiencies found in modern performance enablement free HR from the often overwhelming administrative tedium of babysitting annual reviews. This helps significantly in delivering HR from its cost-center shackles. Second, modern performance enablement is highly engaging and, therefore, highly inviting. It's a boon to companywide participation rates, which, in turn, produce rich longitudinal data on the performance of the organization's people. With the newfound time and mental space to devote to understanding and interpreting this data, an HR department can become a strategic partner to leadership by being the source of deep insight into the company's people. Jamie put it best, and I encourage you to watch this episode: “As HR professionals, we now have ways to articulate why what we do matters for the business, and I would say HR should be really excited. Don't wait for the seat at the table to be given to you. Just take it.”
#HRTechChat: Nicole Davies, Vice President of Talent Optimization at Valet Living
Nov 11 2022
#HRTechChat: Nicole Davies, Vice President of Talent Optimization at Valet Living
For this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast, my guest was Nicole Davies, vice president of talent optimization at Valet Living. Our discussion covered her department's highly successful deployment of Quantum Workplace, which 3Sixty Insights details in a recently published case study. If you've ever lived in a multifamily home, condominium complex or apartment building, it's possible that you've benefitted from Valet Living. United States-based and close to 28 years old, Valet Living operates in more than 40 states and employs approximately 10,000; about 8,500 are part-time staff. Together, these employees carry out amenity services such as package delivery, waste removal, and dog walking to the 1.8 million homes in residential communities with which the company partners. Driving Nicole's decision to propose deploying Quantum Workplace at Valet Living was her employer's lack of modern technology — or any technology at all, really — for tracking employees' performance. The process was annual and highly manual. As we have discussed at length lately, here at 3Sixty Insights, this is no way at all in this day and age to track employee performance, let alone promote better performance, boost employee engagement or inspire staff to stay. Annual and manual performance management has pretty much always been antithetical to all these goals, in fact. Luckily, modern technology for talent management makes it possible to leave these old ways behind and helps organizations align the employee experience to a high-tech customer experience. Valet Living already had advanced software, long in place, designed to track associates' progress day-to-day in completing client-facing work, and Nicole wanted to bring the company's employer brand into alignment with this aspect of the consumer brand. "We pride ourselves on being a tech-enabled service," she shared during the podcast. Valet Living's associates are "out there on site. They're using very fancy technology we've developed to let us know where they are on the property. But then, on the people side of things, we were very low tech. We really had no great way for them to be able to have engaging conversations with their leaders, or for them to even really know what was happening within the company." When Nicole joined Valet Living, she and the rest of leadership there made the decision to partner with Quantum Workplace. Doing so left them "one-stop shopping so to speak, where folks could go if they wanted to learn about how they're doing — going from a performance perspective all the way through to opportunities to continue to grow and develop from a succession planning perspective." Positive employee engagement increased considerably right away and continues to climb. Given that daily work life for associates does not naturally lead to much interaction between them and their managers, this boon to employee engagement at Valet Living is especially notable given the fundamentals of the employer's business model. Employee retention is much higher, too, and with the deployment of Quantum Workplace has come a significant boost in internal hiring for managerial roles and attendant drop in labor expenditure related to external recruiting. Our case study dives into these details. If you're looking for an example of how to boost employee engagement under challenging conditions, and if you need inspiration for HR transformation, then you owe it to yourself to watch this episode. The use of Quantum Workplace has helped Nicole elevate HR's strategic standing at Valet Living. Highly knowledgeable when it comes to talent management, she's a natural guest for a podcast and has an exceptionally compelling story to share.
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Larry McAlister, founder of The Corporate Humanist Consultancy
Nov 3 2022
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Larry McAlister, founder of The Corporate Humanist Consultancy
This is my first time hosting an HR Tech Chat and my first guest is Larry McAlister!  My colleague Brent Skinner included me on HR Tech Chats before - Talent Management - It Will Blend and 3Sixty Insights Shares its Takeaways from the HR Technology Conference & Expo.  We are going to make a regular practice out of sharing our big ideas, and he has encouraged me to host my own HR Tech Chat too. I am so grateful for this opportunity! When I first met Larry, our professional paths intersected at NetApp and Fuel50, I was struck by his passion for helping organizations transform their talent and culture through the effective use of technology. It is not surprising that he recently published a book about this very topic - titled "The Power to Transform.” He is always eager to share his insights and experiences with other leaders in the field. We both agree the definition of success is changing. With so many individuals working remotely and needing to adapt to changing conditions, skills development and well-being have become key components of success. And in this new landscape, HR technology is playing an essential role by providing tools for managers to have more meaningful conversations with their employees. By leveraging innovative HR tech solutions like talent marketplace and virtual coaching tools, managers are able to provide employees with the support they need in a way that is fast and efficient. Additionally, these technologies help to promote empathy and understanding among team members, allowing them to communicate effectively even during times of stress and uncertainty. It is clear that modern HR tech is enabling a new definition of success in the age of the post pandemic, empowering both individuals and organizations as they navigate this challenging time. As more and more companies embrace the concept of an ecosystem and explore different ways to bring together diverse solutions, it is clear that the ability to think creatively and effectively manage different perspectives is critical. And in order for companies to fully realize the potential of this ecosystem mindset, they must also pay close attention to their HR tech stack and talent strategy. Furthermore, it is crucial that businesses recognize that automating tasks alone is no longer sufficient; rather, it is how we leverage the resulting data that truly matters. With greater data democratization across all levels of an organization, people have an opportunity to see exactly what they're capable of achieving. Whether individuals are looking to climb up the corporate ladder or simply want to improve as individuals, having access to meaningful data will help them realize their full potential. We covered a lot of ground in this discussion and there’s definitely something for everyone. So whether you’re an HR pro looking for ways to stay ahead of the curve or just starting out on your tech journey, we hope you find this information helpful.
#HRTechChat: Talent Management -- It Will Blend
Oct 24 2022
#HRTechChat: Talent Management -- It Will Blend
It's been about a month since my colleague Jen Dole and I dropped our very first mutual episode of the #HRTechChat podcast. Today's is the second installment in this new internal series wherein we will discuss various issues facing professionals whose day-to-day lives intersect with human resources and human capital management and how and why technology fits into the equation. Jen is now well past her 90-day mark here at 3Sixty Insights. When she joined us, we seriously considered whether to label her practice area something other than talent management. It has become a traditional term, after all, and part of us wanted to be forward-thinking and novel. Ultimately, we landed on the side of tradition, but we continue to wonder when exactly it makes sense today to refer to talent management as, well, talent management.... Conceived by McKinsey & Company in 1997, according to Wikipedia, the concept of talent management itself was once a novel take on the so-called softer aspects of human capital management, things like performance management, succession planning, compensation management, and, depending on who's talking, learning management and career development, too. And, in that time, an age when systematization in HCM was in its infancy, HR departments far and wide, from the leanest at the smallest companies to the most developed at the largest, were busy enough to approach talent management as siloed activities to tamp down. This continued for years. Fast-forward to today, however, and the benefit of hindsight reveals that the practice of so-coined talent management never comprised discrete, neatly defined activities; it was just the relatively archaic state of the technology for it holding us back, forcing us to contemplate things rigidly. The state of the art of technology for HCM today has since evolved to accommodate the fluid nature of what we've long identified as talent management. And we are now at the point where the conventional domains of traditional talent management blend together every day in sophisticated organizations where HR has embraced this state of the art and the forward-thinking workflow that goes along with it. New terms such as the future of work and the employee experience reflect the reality and help these HR teams show and exercise their strategic worth to the C-suite. But don't say any of this to those aforementioned lean HR teams at small organizations. Regale them with tales of a progressive employee experience or a bright future of work, and it may not even make sense to them. For them, it's probably best to call the softer side of HR by its traditional name, talent management. This is because every organization starts with nothing when it comes to HR, and there will always be those among us systematizing their HCM, absolutely needing to approach talent management as an array of discrete, siloed operations in need of order. It may be hard to believe, but this is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg of what Jen and I managed to cover in what felt like the shortest 35 or so minutes ever. I encourage anyone reading this to listen in. The term talent management may yet go away, eventually. In the meantime, however, we'll call it just that for the foreseeable future. Even as the activities of talent management continue to blend beyond the vision of a now-quarter-century-old concept, the term remains a useful signpost for all.
#HRTechChat: 3Sixty Insights Shares its Takeaways from the HR Technology Conference & Expo
Sep 25 2022
#HRTechChat: 3Sixty Insights Shares its Takeaways from the HR Technology Conference & Expo
For those of you who don't know, Jen Dole has joined the team at 3Sixty Insights as director and principal analyst to dive deep into talent management. Jen and I go back a little bit. The week before last, at HR Technology Conference & Expo, was the first time we saw each other face to face since the first time she and I met. When was that? It was when we were both at Cornerstone. Working in different divisions, we ran into each other at LAX on our way to the company's 20th anniversary celebration in Palm Springs, Calif., and got to chatting. Later, Jen and I began to talk shop a bit more after she joined Fuel50, which is where she was most recently. Before pivoting to working for vendors of technology for human capital management, where she focused on client success, Jen was a practitioner in HR — at Fortune 500 firms, no less. And she was there in the bad old days, when technology for HCM was relatively new, especially for talent management. She tells the story of running succession planning on Microsoft Excel spreadsheets at Liberty Mutual Insurance. It was a slow, tedious exercise in administration, and her job changed profoundly once her team finally got ahold of technology purpose-built for this. "I went from being an administrator to being a strategic adviser, because I wasn't focused on collecting data anymore. The technology was doing that." It's an idea taking hold. More than once earlier this month, at the event, Jen and I heard various renditions of the the idea: access to readily available, current data on the workforce is key to HR's transforming itself into a strategic advisor to organizational leadership. As the focus, data can orientate even the most administratively hampered HR departments in the direction of the future of work. And what is the fast-developing, primary dynamic going to be in the future of work? The focus has shifted fundamentally, already, to the employee experience. All anyone had to do was look at the themes of the booths in the expo hall and speak with the vendors and HR professionals in attendance: this train has left the station. As Jen likes to say, and I'm paraphrasing, "People's definition of success has changed, and employers need to align their definition with this if they want to succeed, too." Agreed. And this isn't just an aspirational HR-centric phenomenon anymore. We see C-suite executives, boards, line managers and just about everyone else clamoring to move in this direction, too. It's almost as if the wake-up call of a worldwide pandemic jolted everyone into acknowledging that organizations are made up of people. Who knew? I'm thinking about calling it the rise of the sentient organization. The state of the art in technology for HCM is helping us to listen. We heard plenty of other terms and phrases uttered often at the event: artificial intelligence, intelligent enterprise, FOMO (fear of missing out), empathy, and more. And, in contrast with HR Tech events of years' past, there were some terms and phrases we didn't hear all that much. Automation is one. What are some others? Watch the podcast. It is a real pleasure to have Jen on our team. We cannot wait to speak with as many of you as humanly possible and learn as much as we can about your thoughts about and experiences in HCM.
#HRTechChat with Pete Tiliakos, Global Payroll Product Strategy Leader at Alight Solutions
Sep 23 2022
#HRTechChat with Pete Tiliakos, Global Payroll Product Strategy Leader at Alight Solutions
It was my distinct pleasure to have Pete Tiliakos, global payroll product strategy leader for Alight Solutions, as my guest for this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast. Pete's latest role is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg when it comes to his experience, expertise and, really, authority in the domain of payroll. Most recently, Pete was an analyst at two different firms. Before that, he was payroll solution architect at IBM and senior consultant, human capital management, at Deloitte Consulting, in that order. Back in the early aughts, notably, he was payroll leader for shared services at Disney Worldwide. Put differently, to say Pete is an expert in payroll is an understatement. Returning to the present, "It's an exciting time to be in the industry," said Pete, who's also a member of our Global Executive Advisory Council. "It feels like all that experience has really caught a wave." During our chat, we shared takeaways in the wake of this year's triumphant return of the HR Technology Conference & Expo. Triumphant does seem like an appropriate word. Regarding the conference, "To me that was the biggest, boldest, most vibrant, most alive event I've seen in a long time," Pete said. "There's a lot of talk about a recession and a slowdown and things, but what we're seeing is that talent is still very important. And then, of course, we saw payroll well represented." The possibilities around payroll are greater and more progressive today than we even would have fathomed 10 years ago. The train has left the station, so to speak, and our concept of what payroll can and does mean has expanded. "I just think it's great to see all the investment and focus on payroll," Pete said. "COVID really provided that spotlight, where payroll became infinitely more important compared to how it had been treated in the past." It's almost as if business leaders are finally seeing the processing of payroll for what it is: not a mere cost to contain, but an investment, just as their people's pay itself is an investment, too. Pete and I delved deeply into all of this, the transformation of payroll — as evidenced by our conversations out in the wild, at HR Technology Conference — and how payroll professionals can seize the moment to become strategic advisors to their organizations. It's one thing to be highly skilled in work that organizational leadership may view as background noise. It's quite another to become bearers of crucially informative data that can change the C-suite's basic understanding of the workforce. That's when payroll and strategy start to occupy the same sentences. I really enjoyed this discussion with Pete and highly encourage readers to tune into this episode.
#HRTechChat with Bob Cahill, CEO of Globalization Partners
Sep 14 2022
#HRTechChat with Bob Cahill, CEO of Globalization Partners
Bob Cahill got his start at Ernst & Young. “And I was fascinated by the power of software and technology to expand your market or make you efficient in your operations,” he said as our guest on this episode of #HRTechChat video podcast. Over the approximately 25 years that have passed, Bob served as a C-suite executive for several technology companies, and a big part of his focus has always been on international challenges, “where I found a lot of passion to scale technology globally,” he said. “It was sort of the perfect juncture with meeting Nicole Sahin,” the founder of Globalization Partners, where Bob later became CEO. “She had this better mousetrap idea.” Traditionally, companies that wanted to expand internationally would have to follow a very conventional process. The first step would be to set up a new entity and get a payroll registration so they could hire people. Then, they'd have to ensure regulatory compliance would be outsourced to an array of advisors. “Nicole's vision was, ‘Why do I keep doing this over and over again?’,” Bob noted. Thus was born, about 10 years ago, Nicole’s vision for an employer-of-record (EOR). A company that needs to stand up its ability to employ people in a country new to its operations can turn to an EOR to do all the heavy lifting. The EOR’s very business is to set up these entities in any country needed to become the globally expanding employer’s single point for all things there related to employment. The EOR assumes this risk and takes on solving for all the complexity involved. As a pioneer in the space, Globalization-Partners has trailblazed best-practices to overcome resistance to the idea of an EOR. This resistance is waning considerably as EORs have flourished to gain acceptance in recent years. The welcoming has come not only from the typical growing global organization, but also from employers clamoring to establish borderless workforces and vie for talent in pursuit of the emerging work-from-anywhere approach to talent acquisition and retention. This is the future-of-work angle, and it’s worth noting that nearly one-quarter of CFOs are concerned over talent shortages, according to Globalization Partners' 2022 Globalization Trends Survey. Perhaps more compelling, 83 percent of CFOs believe “their long-term plans will stem around expansion into new countries,” the related press release notes. It’s a number slightly higher than last year’s, and the report is rich with insight into the sentiments and objectives of CFOs vis-à-vis EOR. As additional context for our conversation, Bob and I touched a bit on the findings overall. We also explored the company’s philosophy when it comes to workforce inclusivity and blending service and technology for EOR, as well as Nicole’s vision for the years ahead in EOR now that she is executive chair of Globalization Partners. I highly recommend viewing this episode.
#HRTechChat with Danny Schulz, Senior Manager of Payroll, Systems and Taxes at Kohler Co.
Sep 7 2022
#HRTechChat with Danny Schulz, Senior Manager of Payroll, Systems and Taxes at Kohler Co.
When it comes to the disruption of the past two years, "I'm probably one of the first people to say we're really thankful for that, because I think it led payroll be the star," says Danny Schulz, the newest member of our Global Executive Advisory Council and my guest for this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast. He means payroll becoming the star at Kohler Co., where Danny is senior manager of payroll, systems, and taxes. So, naturally, we sat down to discuss best practices in bringing order to global payroll — something Danny and his team are well on their way to achieving. Says Danny: "To me, payroll in general comes down to data and data flow. And the success of your payroll operation is really going to be dependent upon the success of your data. I'm a data junkie at heart. If you're at a place where, from an organizational standpoint, you're doing multiple data entry by humans [...] you're not going to get it right." It's a scenario most global organizations encounter, before they ever set about to rectify the situation. This is because, once it gets to the point where leadership recognizes that global payroll needs attention, global payroll has almost always become exceedingly complicated. Beyond the fact that it's by-definition tough to solve for global payroll before you actually have global payroll, most organizations will wait till it becomes noticeably painful to process payroll globally. For some, it is then that they will look for a fix. For others, and perhaps more often, "There's some executive somewhere that wants the payroll data," says Danny. The payroll teams (yes, plural) do their best to get this data from, let's say, 16 different people, consolidate the data, and deliver it in a report. Suppose the process takes 26 hours to complete. The executive needs the information daily. A decision is made to make a change. Depending on the size of the organization, it takes a lot of sleuthing to get global payroll right — figuring out who handles what, where, when, and with what system or systems. Think of it not unlike conducting discovery for a legal case. It's to determine the organization's current state. There are, in fact, at least three best practices when bringing order to global payroll, according to Danny. One is to get your data right. Another is to corral executive alignment in your move to a strategy for global payroll. A third is to develop a roadmap and standardize processes. Don't worry. We haven't stolen his thunder. Danny went into all this and much more during our chat. I encourage you to view the episode.
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Lina Tonk, Senior Vice President of Marketing at isolved
Aug 30 2022
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Lina Tonk, Senior Vice President of Marketing at isolved
Who should own the employee experience (EX)? "There's room for everyone," said isolved Senior Vice President of Marketing Lina Tonk during her guest appearance on the #HRTechChat video podcast. And she's right. The EX occurs everywhere any employee is involved in work. "I do believe the final responsibility should reside with HR. And I think HR leaders will probably agree with that." They probably would, yes. HR's job is not to micromanage the EX, however; it is to shepherd, lead and help shape it. From this, responsibility naturally flows. Speaking of marketing, have you ever wondered whether, why or how marketing and HR could join forces to bolster and improve EX? I know that I have. And it turns out that it's an idea gaining steam.... In January of this year, isolved conducted a survey of 500 HR leaders based in the United States and from a broad cross-section of industries. The resulting whitepaper, "Transforming Employee Experience: 500 HR Leaders Talk Talent, Tech, Tactics & Threats," is an interesting read that spans several areas of interest as they relate to isolved's goal with the research: ascertaining HR's top challenges of today and top opportunities for tomorrow. And the exercise unearthed some intriguing findings vis-à-vis an emerging role for marketing in the EX and HR's sentiments regarding this. According to isolved's survey, 65 percent of HR leaders say they want their marketing team involved with EX. Specifically, 52 percent are seeking marketing’s involvement because the department plays an important role in how the company is perceived in the market, and another 40 percent want to leverage marketing’s creative ability. HR and marketing work together in these ways at isolved. During our chat, Lina described her on-the-job relationship with her colleague Amy Mosher, chief people officer at isolved. "I'm super transparent with Amy," with whom she speaks daily to align goals. During our conversation, Lina got granular in explaining what aligning marketing's goals with HR's looks like at isolved — where HR has its own goals for the employee experience, and marketing has some related to the employee experience, too, "and I believe that cross-functional teams can only work in that manner if goals are attached to them." Lina delved even deeper, providing a glimpse into what this kind of collaboration, between HR and marketing, looks like from an executional standpoint — something else I've always wondered about. For example, advocacy is incredibly important to isolved, especially for HR leaders because of its impact on retention, which is "key to everything that we're doing," said Lina. Related to this, isolved has an internal advocacy tool that it provides to all its employees. "We needed not only the creativity on the content for marketing, but also the insights and the drive from HR." Usually, several tangents will surface during the #HRTechChat video podcast, and this episode is no different. Lina and I got to talking about where EX possibly matters most. There's probably no definitive answer to this question, but we both agreed: it's hard to argue that onboarding isn't critical to EX in terms of setting the tone for the long term. Incidentally, speaking to this is a soon-to-be-published report by isolved compiling results from a survey of 1,000 employees. Among the findings is this: 49 percent of employees say they’ve been tempted to leave a new job after a poor onboarding experience that includes limited transitioning, an unprepared first day and excessive paperwork.
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Rachel Jordan, Vice President of HCM Product Management at Unit4
Jun 6 2022
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Rachel Jordan, Vice President of HCM Product Management at Unit4
Joining me for the #HRTechChat video podcast is Rachel Jordan. At Unit4, provider of business software for human capital management and enterprise resource planning, as well as financial planning and analysis, Rachel is vice president of HCM product management. Just like several of her fellow relatively new additions to leadership at Unit4, Rachel has a strong a pedigree in the industry. Unit4 is a vendor keen on finding the best ways to align and combine HCM, ERP and FP&A. The possibilities are intriguing, and you'll be hearing more about these from 3Sixty Insights as we stroll through the second half of 2022. Think of this episode of the podcast as an appetizer. HCM technology (including the ethos behind it) has evolved drastically over the past five years, from a focus on talent management to one of supporting the success of people. (Those are two different things, yes.) HR continues to mature in its role, from a largely reactionary position mired in transactional work to one aspiring to proactively support organizational growth and strategy -- and capable of doing so. It makes sense. Organizations have had to adapt their HCM systems broadly and deeply, especially since the pandemic took hold and ushered in work from home, hybrid work and other dynamics once considered novelties or exceptions to the rule. HR's charter now is to facilitate and advocate for the employee experience, and the HCM system is no longer just a database of people, but an ecosystem to support a total employee lifecycle that has, on average, become unconventional and nonlinear -- e.g., career progressions no longer track straight, effective internal mobility hinges on accurate insight into soft skills, etc. Better-delivered information from payroll and compensation strategy and regarding employees' skills influences the employee experience by optimizing internal mobility, facilitating tenure, and rendering current and future personnel costs more predictable. All this change changes the fundamental calculus that HR and other organizational stakeholders must follow to justify their proposals to invest in HCM systems. One way for them to make this argument is to show the value of HCM data as HCM systems become better connected to other domains of the enterprise and the related data becomes more easily combinable in real time. The idea is to shorten the time it takes to figure out how or whether this or that decision regarding people success would deliver value to the organization. As my conversation with Rachel ultimately implies, HR leaders and other HCM-immersed internal organizational stakeholders in positions of influence should emphasize that one major benefit of all this is not only greater organizational agility, but stability, too. Data that an HCM system produces can give employers invaluable insight into which actions are best to take. The ready availability of this data, especially when it's the result of data exchange between systems supporting areas of the business that need alignment anyway, means leaders can take these actions early.
#HRTechChat with retrain.ai and Seyfarth Shaw LLP
May 2 2022
#HRTechChat with retrain.ai and Seyfarth Shaw LLP
Isabelle Bichler is co-founder and chief operating officer of retrain.ai. An employment litigation attorney, Robert T. Szyba is a partner at Seyfarth Shaw LLP. Both are well-qualified to discuss the at once inescapable and intriguing trends at the intersection of AI and human capital management, and they joined us as my guests for this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast. retrain.ai is the creator of AI-based self-evolving ontologies that unearth the relationships at the intersection of an organization's existing and future roles, its people, and their hard, soft and transferable skills. During the chat, Bichler provided an impassioned, detailed explanation on why this is so important -- and why the development of responsible AI in this area is essential to helping leaders act equitably as they plan more efficient, more targeted external and internal hiring with implications, as well, for learning and performance management. That we're even having this conversation is evidence that we are finally here: AI has finally evolved to the point that it is now a bona fide benefit to HCM. And, right on cue, AI for the workforce has become the focus of an inchoate, nevertheless quickly gathering regulatory framework. That the latter has promptly followed the former is unsurprising. Fraught with the potential for misuse both intentional and unintentional, AI is an emerging technology also holding much, much promise for the world of work. Regulators are still wrestling to approach AI effectively. There is always the chance that an early, reflexive, inaccurately or only partially informed flurry of laws governing its use in the workplace could stifle innovation in the field and have the opposite of the intended effect on AI's impact on people, Szyba cautioned during the podcast. Take this new AI Audit Law that will affect employers in New York City starting in January 2023, for example, regulating their use of AI in screening job candidates or employees up for promotion. Reading it, Those needing to comply might find themselves legitimately unclear on just how to do so. Bichler, Szyba and I will be co-presenting a webinar exploring the subject of this law on June 8 at 10am EST. You can register here. You could say AI and the future of work are inextricable. There's no stopping where we're going with AI in HCM, and we humans must, therefore, embrace and learn as much about AI as we humanly can. With this episode, we do our best, the three of us, to help us all scale the learning curve just a little bit more, and I highly recommend that readers listen in....
#HRTechChat with James Norwood, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer of isolved
Mar 29 2022
#HRTechChat with James Norwood, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer of isolved
Consider: It's not necessarily that an employer has a performance management problem or, say, a learning management system problem. We must strive to marshal the discrete domains of human capital management, the silos, as one multidisciplinary instrument to solve employers' people-related needs and challenges. This is the high-level strategic value in industry-specific and industry-tailored suites for HCM, in my opinion. They help us think about HCM more holistically. They help vendors and users alike of technology for HCM break free from silo-think. There's plenty additional value, as well, for the industries these tailored HCM suites address. Software-as-a-service provider isolved recently launched People Cloud for Healthcare Services, a version of its HCM software suite exclusively for employers in health and medical services. To discuss the new product (and accompanying professional services) James Norwood, chief marketing and strategy officer at isolved, joined us for this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast. "Once you're in a battle for talent, and it becomes a seller's market, then you do have to invest in these things," James says. He's speaking of the perennial need for registered nurses in healthcare and the need to combat and address this with people-focused solutions. RNs are always in short supply, it seems. It's a top-of-mind challenge in the health and medical services space. The pandemic has only exacerbated this shortage to become even more acute (if that was even possible). The vendor's own research shows 100 percent of HR leaders in assisted living facilities saying its hard to retain RNs. You read that right, by the way. In a large isolved-initiated survey of many subsets of the healthcare space, yes, all the HR leaders working in assisted living reported difficulty in retaining talent. It's indicative of the urgent and deep challenges related to employing people in the healthcare space. "What is isolved doing? We're helping on some of those things," James says. For healthcare-related employers, through the new healthcare-focused version of the suite, "we're helping with people getting onboarded. We're helping them get compliant. Our learning management system has very industry-specific certification training courses, which will automatically notify people in advance when a particular certification might be coming up to expire. So there's lots of things that can be done to work with employees, to make them feel like they have more control in their own destiny." The new version of the suite does a number of things to address the idiosyncrasies of healthcare employers' people-related needs, and we recently published our analysis of the People Cloud for Healthcare Services launch. I encourage you all to watch this episode. James and I delved deeply into the rationale behind isolved's decision to launch this new version of its product, how it helps, where the vendor looks to tackle industry specialization next, and much more.
#HRTechChat with hireEZ's CEO Steven Jiang and Head of Marketing Shannon Pritchett
Feb 23 2022
#HRTechChat with hireEZ's CEO Steven Jiang and Head of Marketing Shannon Pritchett
Early this month, at an event for analysts, news media, customers and others, the artificial intelligence-powered global talent platform formerly known as Hiretual announced that it had renamed itself hireEZ. I enjoyed attending virtually and learning the rationale for the name change. We also heard details around the $26 million in venture capital that hireEZ noted it had just raised to help drive the objective of the rebrand: becoming the first vendor to define outbound recruiting as a market segment. Following the event, it seemed natural to invite hireEZ CEO Steven Jiang and Head of Marketing Shannon Pritchett to the #HRTechChat video podcast. “We chose to rebrand to align with our company’s mission to create a new category,” Jiang said, during the podcast. “Our mission is to make outbound recruiting easy. We want to make it easy for recruiters to bring jobs to people. Our vision, three words, is ‘jobs find people.'” Outbound recruiting itself is a collection of practices that have surfaced over the past several years. This market alert we published on the development delves into things. Suffice it to say, outbound recruiting is the yin to inbound recruiting’s yang…. Once a novel idea made possible by the then-novelty of the Internet, inbound recruiting is the idea that you can use the web as a fast way to attract large numbers of candidates to apply to your open jobs. This has its benefits. In contrast, think of outbound recruiting as a return to classic headhunting, but now aided by marked evolution in technologies such as AI and the cloud — and the Internet, of course. Within the external online environment, recruiters are better able to find and choose their targets. It is now possible for organizations to identify and approach right-fit candidates online for open requisitions and, thus, spare themselves the tedious task of sifting through a slew of information on candidates that found their way into the applicant tracking system. A thorough search may be impossible in the ATS. And it’s hit-or-miss on who, among these candidates in the database, may or may not be good matches anyway. Outbound recruiting is far more efficient, and recruiters with the means to do so have increasingly been deploying it, in bits and pieces, as essential arrows for their quiver. “We’ve evolved into a more candidate-centric, candidate experience model,” Shannon said. This is where the pinpointed, 1:1 nature of outbound recruiting comes into play, and that means to do so is where hireEZ enters the equation. The vendor’s technology already supports all five pillars of outbound recruiting: AI sourcing; robust, searchable data; email automation; diversity, equity and inclusion; and system integration. During the podcast, Steven, Shannon and I dove deeply into the details of these five pillars, which the aforementioned market alert also describes. Against the backdrop of The Great Resignation and a job market that looks like it’s going to be topsy-turvy for the long term, what hireEZ is doing in the recruiting space is remarkable, really. What struck me most, possibly, is around something Steven said. He noted that, for recruiters to embrace outbound recruiting, they must internalize a fundamental shift in mentality. Inbound recruiting remains a piece of the puzzle, yes. But the passivity associated with waiting for candidates to pour in is incompatible with outbound recruiting, whose ethos is proactive, can-do, recruiting with intentionality. The talent acquisition departments that deploy outbound recruiting the most successfully will commence all their recruiting activities with an outbound mindset first, with inbound activities playing a supporting role in their pursuit of the objective.
#HRTechChat with Maurik Dippel, Co-Founder and CEO of CircleLytics
Feb 4 2022
#HRTechChat with Maurik Dippel, Co-Founder and CEO of CircleLytics
Technology has advanced to the point where we don't really have to subject ourselves to the inflexibility of a number of traditional, conventional practices anymore, in human capital management. One of these is our approach to measuring employee engagement and collecting employee feedback. Technology has evolved. We can dive much deeper now and achieve several objectives at once. We have much more at our disposal now than just one-to-many surveys set to quarterly, twice-annual or yearly cadences. "We're finding that a lot of the old ways, the conventional or traditional ways of doing things, just don't cut it," says Maurik Dippel, our guest for this episode of the #HRTechChat video podcast. Annual employee engagement surveys and the like just aren't "up to the to the task. The employee survey is an inflexible instrument." Innovations in driving employee engagement and gathering employee feedback outside the confines and limitations of the conventional employee engagement survey -- these are areas of expertise squarely in the wheelhouse of Netherlands-based CircleLytics, where Maurik is CEO and co-founder. The CircleLytics solution comprises artificial intelligence; natural language processing; well-thought-out, tailored, guided open questioning; facilitated follow-up interaction between parties, who see and react to each other's responses; and additional activity to make the gathering of employee feedback highly interactive, dynamic, meaningful and... engaging. It's an approach that in fact promotes employee engagement as a part of the process. This is far more insightful and helpful than the administering of a survey to measure employee engagement, in my opinion. Maurik agrees, of course, and notes that the model has a way of optimizing management-employee relations and helping these and related stakeholders reach consensus and accord internally on challenging issues. With its AI and NLP, CircleLytics' solution analyzes their answers and interactions to capture as broad of a spectrum of organizational sentiment as possible, to help employers reach consensus more readily and in ever better ways, over time. As a microcosm, it's not unlike the idea in the macro that we must inform algorithms right now with as broad of a spectrum of human sentiment as possible, to help ensure that AI evolves as humanly as we want over time -- the focus of another episode of #HRTechChat, from November 2021 with leaders from Cornerstone and AbilityMap. But before you view that episode from last year, be sure to watch this one. Maurik does an excellent job of explaining how CircleLytics works. Plus, he and I covered lots of intriguing ground. Candidly, Maurik really made me think, and we think our chat will make you think deeply too on new possibilities in employee feedback and engagement.
#HRTechChat with Doug Dennerline, CEO of Betterworks
Jan 20 2022
#HRTechChat with Doug Dennerline, CEO of Betterworks
"The annual performance review process is pretty broken," says Doug Dennerline, CEO of Betterworks and our latest guest on the 3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat video podcast. "It was created seventy years ago for hierarchical organizations," which means it's mismatched to manager-employee dynamics at most organizations today, according to Doug. His credentials and past experience leading well-known vendors in our space are formidable and lent gravitas to our discussion. And I happen to agree with him wholeheartedly. Years ago, in a previous professional life, I wrote about "a coming mass extinction in human capital management." A result of advances in technology spurring an evolution in attitudes around how best to get the most out of employees, chief among the coming casualties would be the conventional, traditional annual performance review, in my opinion. It was nothing particularly revelatory on my part. For a long time, plenty others had been saying similar things. The idea to say it was a "coming mass extinction" gave the idea some bite and sounded cool, I rationalized. Fast forward to today. The bite of the past two years accelerated the aforementioned evolution in those attitudes to the point where, here we are, fixated on how to create the conditions for an optimal employee experience at all times. Clunky, yearly performance reviews don't fit into this equation. We may still need them for compliance, sure. Factor machine learning and social media-grade functionality into continuous performance enablement, however, and a clear, auditable trail of information further supporting any action with an employee is possible and defensible from a regulatory standpoint. Enablement is the new word, by the way. Doug doesn't like the word "management" in performance management, and neither do I -- not one bit. It's just as bad as the "management" in human capital management or talent management. The idea that we're enabling performance is a better, more accurate reflection of the purpose of evaluating employees, and we end up doing much more than merely evaluating them. This is a good thing. Think of all the advantages modern technology for the employee experience affords us when compared to the old approaches. All you have to do is read Betterworks' tagline: "Betterworks closes the loop between people, strategy and results, enabling organizations to align even the most sprawling teams." There's no practical way to form a virtuous loop of people, strategy and results with only a conventional performance management system. Add work from home to the mix, and a renaissance, an expansion in our thinking in our approach to figuring out how employees are performing, is in order. The frustrating and stilted thing about the way old-style performance management has developed, is that it occurs in a vacuum. It doesn't really drive strategy. It purports to help drive results, but barely does so. Mostly, staff loathe the tedious annual review process and anything to do with performance management. So do their managers. Underperforming or struggling employees fear the process. There's little room for positive engagement wherein they might feel good about the opportunity to get better at their jobs. It's all top-down evaluation, all the time, and, often, the process isn't even very efficient or effective in producing accurate, usable evaluations.
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Michael Spataro, Chief Delivery Officer for Legion
Jan 4 2022
3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat with Michael Spataro, Chief Delivery Officer for Legion
For this, the latest episode of the 3Sixty Insights #HRTechChat video podcast, our guest was Michael Spataro, chief delivery officer for Legion, a provider of advanced technologies for workforce management (WFM). Michael and I enjoyed a wide-ranging, at once practical and philosophical discussion of organizations' relationship with their hourly workforce in the retail and service industries. Legion's software excels in helping employers in these industries support a strong, positive employee experience for their hourly staff. In the summer of 2020, Legion published a report sharing the findings of a survey the vendor conducted. Respondents comprised about 500 wage and hourly employees and approximately the same number of managers, all in retail and the service industries. An top-line breakdown of the many findings is available in this press release. According to the survey’s results, notably, two out of three top reasons for leaving an organization are essentially the same for employees and their managers. For wage employees, these top three reasons are a lack of scheduling empowerment, poor communication, and an inability to get paid early. For managers, the top three are the lack of tools that would make it easier for them to communicate with their employees, an inability to get paid early, and a desire to reduce the time they spend on administrative tasks such as scheduling. Note that for the one that is not as similar, it pertains to the same issue nonetheless: scheduling. Notice also that all these concerns leading managers and their staff alike to leave their jobs in these industries all have to do, palpably, with the quality of their experience with the employer. If an employer were to address these, the payoff in their workforce’s relationship with the organization’s customers would probably improve significantly. How do we know this? Michael and I delved into it a bit. For one, it’s a fundamental respect for the Service-Profit Chain, a well-documented idea detailed in Harvard Business Review. The central tenet of the Service-Profit Chain says floor associates satisfied in their work and its effects on their work-life balance are more apt to treat customers well, which, in turn, leads to better retention of both. With this in mind, we discussed the past two years' impact on employee satisfaction in these types of roles. It hasn't always been the case everywhere, but the majority of hourly staff have long struggled to thrive in these industries. It can be thankless work. It isn't just the pay, which has tended to be low. The entire employee experience has historically left a lot to be desired in these types of roles. For hourly jobs in retail and the service industries, as Michael puts it, the pandemic has precipitated a major power shift in the employer-employee relationship. All I will add is that the past two years have brought a festering inverse of a healthy Service-Profit Chain to the surface. Look at it either way, and the ramifications are clear. "There’s no shortage of workers, but the availability of workers willing to do retail or hospitality jobs, where the employee experience is poor, has dwindled," Michael says. They're holding out for better pay and better conditions overall. It’s the reality of the Great Resignation in these sectors among these employee demographics. Call it the Great Resignation or something else, even. The terminology doesn't matter so much. What does matter, far more, is that the pandemic created a scenario wherein employees in these kinds of roles have been able to exert more influence over the conditions of their employment and its effects on their overall lives. “It’s more than better pay," Michael says. "Employees want to interact with their employer" in much the same way they do as customers "with every other company in their life.”