What We're Reading: New Skills, Talent and Employment Edition

Highlights
recent report from the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) and National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) reviewed the current state of workforce data systems and the current innovative solutions in place as a response to the WIOA mandated reforms. While researchers identified significant challenges, they also noted valiant efforts to improve systems, and made recommendations for opportunities to better learn and share.
 
A new study by Learning House and Future Workplace suggests that 40% of surveyed American HR leaders think that artificial intelligence will help close the skills gap. In addition, the study found that 74% of these companies are merely investing $500 in learning and development per employee. Many companies are investing in AI over employee training.
 
An op-ed by LinkedIn’s Nicole Isaac and Whiteboard Advisors’ Bev Perdue responds to research from the LinkedIn and World Economic Forum's Global Gender Gap Report, which found that in every industry studied, less than 50% of leadership positions were held by women. The authors suggest that there is still reason for hope, though, because when more females hold leadership positions, the number of females in all positions continue to increase.
 
Although there is much progress on increasing workplace diversity, employers are more likely to hire people like themselves. A recent report from Namely shows 80% of male respondents had male bosses and more than 50% of female respondents had female bosses.
 
Navient’s Money Under 35 survey sheds light on the financial status of young adults in today’s economy. Of the 3,011 young adults surveyed, 41% finished their college degree – resulting in much better financial health.
 
study by SCORE found that four out of five employees surveyed valued perks and benefits more than pay raises. Additionally, 42% of the full-time surveyed employees reported having no perks. Three of the most desired perks were flexible hours, more vacation time, and options to work from home.
 
A recent survey from the Society for Human Resource Management found that the percentage of employers offering maternity leave increased from 26% in 2016 to 35% in 2018. Additionally, paternity leave rose from 21% in 2016 to 29% in 2018. Researchers suggest that this increase has come in response to the ideals of millennial workers along with the hope to boost employees’ balance between work and personal life.
 
The 2018 Global Human Capital Report by Deloitte showed that merely 21% of public sector leaders collaborate on projects. Without leaders working together, companies are falling behind in vital areas such as technology. In addition, the report has outlined nine vital trends that government organizations are facing.

 
Corporate Learning and Development News
 
A new study by Learning House and Future Workplace suggests that 40% of surveyed American HR leaders think that artificial intelligence will help close the skills gap. In addition, the study found that 74% of these companies are merely investing $500 in learning and development per employee. Many companies are investing in AI over employee training.
 
According to Training Magazineonline coaching is bringing customizable, versatile employee training to the table. Eliminating the need for long, broad training sessions, online coaching provides employees with quick, easily-accessible training that builds upon their personal weaknesses.
 
Employee training often stops once someone reaches C-level, executive, or managerial status in their company, but may be very beneficial if put to use according to an article from the Association for Talent Development. Training these leaders in problem-solving and decision-making is a wise investment with benefits that will trickle down to all levels of employment.
 
An article from Harvard Business Review suggests that the idea of the “intraprenuer” is a myth and that innovation thrives in an organization that creates an environment that looks beyond the traditional R&D department and cultivates space and creates structure for innovation.
 
David Peterson, the director of leadership and coaching at Google, has been observing how coaches progress over the past 20 years. Three trends that Peterson believes contribute to coaches having more to offer are leaders improving self-directed development, organizations are learning their own coaching skills, and the climate of organizations is rapidly changing.

 
Credentials, Hiring, and Applicant Tracking News
 
According to a new study from News Deeply, benefits of hiring refugees included more applications for open positions, improved management skills, and higher retention rates. Some obstacles involve language barriers and cultural differences, but employers report that these are minor inconveniences in comparison to the benefits refugees offer to industries such as manufacturing.
 
SHRM analyzes a series of recent reports that show that, with unemployment at a record low, employers are raising wages to compete for summer workers. According to one report by Wakefield research, 74% of employers say that they will pay their employees at least $11 per hour, compared to last year when only 53% of employers planned to pay the same or more. The reports agree that employers plan to pay well above the national minimum wage.
 
A new study by Globoforce’s WorkHuman Analytics and Research Institute and IBM Smarter Workforce Institute finds that a positive employee experience leads to significant profitable outcomes. Recognition, empowerment, and feedback are three workplace procedures that stimulate the work environment, leading to productive employees.
 
Although there is much progress on increasing workplace diversity, many employers are still more likely to hire people like themselves. A recent reportfrom Namely shows 80% of male respondents had male bosses and over 50% of female respondents had female bosses.
 
Fortune and Great Places to Work shared a list of the top 100 best workplaces for millennials. The top three by rank are Ultimate Software, Salesforce, and Edward Jones.
 
Although the unemployment rate being at its lowest point since 2000 seems exceptional, income levels have gone down – leading to families not being able to afford necessities. An article in Forbes claims that contrary to many beliefs, research does not support the skills gap being the reason for unemployment.
 
In recruitment and hiring, a key goal is to find employees who stay long-term. According to HR Dive, a good way for companies to do so is to evaluate their own data to find what methods work.
 
Navient’s Money Under 35 survey sheds light on the financial status of young adults in today’s economy. Of the 3,011 young adults surveyed, 41% finished their college degree – resulting in much better financial health.

 
General HR News
 
study by SCORE found that four out of five employees surveyed valued perks and benefits more than pay raises. Additionally, 42% of the full-time surveyed employees reported having no perks. Three of the most desired perks were flexible hours, more vacation time, and options to work from home.
 
A recent survey from the Society for Human Resource Management found that the percentage of employers offering maternity leave increased from 26% in 2016 to 35% in 2018. Additionally, paternity leave rose from 21% in 2016 to 29% in 2018. Researches suggest that this increase has come in response to the ideals of millennial workers along with the hope to boost employees’ balance between work and personal life.
 
A piece in HR Zone proposes that to ensure consistency when applying vague laws or policies to diverse situations is ‘calibration’. The author defines calibration as the means to make sure all components work in synchronization. He suggests that applying calibration to HR routines will promote quality, consistency, and accuracy.
 
Technology use in HR can be both beneficial and detrimental, based on where it is applied. This article from TLNT suggests that HR technology should help simplify the processes, not automate HR completely. With a balance between technological and human aspects, HR will keep improving its abilities and efficiencies.
 
Most companies actively try to improve their diversity in gender and race, but many other diversity-improving groups are being overlooked. People with disabilities, especially invisible disabilities, are often forgotten along with people who identify as LGBTQ. HR Dive suggests that companies should strive for more diversity not only for a more accepting and diverse work environment, but also in order to represent all of their customers.
 
A piece from HR People + Strategy suggests that the formula to getting morewomen into leadership roles includes removing bias to create fairer hiring processes, developing organization wide inclusive behaviors, and supporting women in developing the confidence to lead.
 
Talent management plays a key role in the innovative success of a company. Talent management ensures that employees feel comfortable to voice new ideas. A research report from ATD shows that some strategies used by top talent management organizations to promote innovation are increasing diversity, providing online communities with a focus on innovation, and rewarding innovative employees. 
 
Bias is an uncontrollable evil in the hiring process that is near impossible to eliminate completely according to an article in Forbes. The author suggests that while bias remains a challenge, data can prove to be a solution. By focusing on data, true diversity can be accomplished without subconscious influencers.

 
Employer Partnerships/Company Innovation
 
Abbott Laboratories announced that each of its employees contributing 2% or more of their paychecks to student loan repayment will be matched with 5% from Abbott. This will relieve employees from worrying too much about retirement savings as well student loans.

 
Startups, Innovation, and Investment News
 
Degreed announced the acquisition of Pathgather, a learning experience platform developer. The combined companies will now service over 200 clients, sharing their learning platform with over 4 million users.
 
Reflektive, the employee performance management company, has acquiredShape Analytics, the people analytics company for workforce data. Reflektive will use Shape with a new feature of personal people analytics for each employee.
 
TalentGuard Inc. and Workday, Inc. announced plans to integrate their platforms. Together, TalentGuard, providing talent management and predictive career pathing software, and Workday, providing human resource management software, will offer clients access to demographic data that is integrated into their existing system.
 
Tact.ai, a voice recognition company that is designed to assist sales people, raised $27 million in a Series C round that included Microsoft, Salesforce, Amazon, and Comcast. This investment is significant as it is uncommon for competing companies to invest in the same companies.

 
Macroeconomic Trends and Public Policy
 
According to the latest report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobless rates for persons with disabilities dropped to 9.2% in 2017, a significant drop from the 10.5% in 2016 according to experts. Additionally, the BLS report found that 32% of those with disabilities worked at least part-time, a number higher than for those without a disabilities. These numbers were based on the annual Current Population Survey which collects data from 60,000 households in the country.
 
recent report from the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) and National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) reviewed the current state of workforce data systems and the current innovative solutions in place as a response to the WIOA mandated reforms. While researchers identified significant challenges, they also noted valiant efforts to improve systems, and made recommendations for opportunities to better learn and share.
 
The 2018 Global Human Capital Report by Deloitte showed that merely 21% of public sector leaders collaborate on projects. Without leaders working together, companies are falling behind in vital areas such as technology. In addition, the report has outlined nine vital trends that government organizations are facing.

 
Other
Fast food restaurants such as Caliburger are struggling to find enough employees; thus, they have turned to robots. Caliburger has installed a robot called “Flippy” that flips burgers, allowing the human workers to focus on more important tasks.