When using personality tests to hire does not work (Business Review Weekly): Use of personality tests to evaluate job candidates is on the rise—but these tests may not be so effective, as some of the most popular ones are more likely to reflect how the candidate thinks at a certain time, rather than revealing enduring character traits. And the tests may be too transparent, allowing candidates to choose the answers they think will be well-received by the company.
Social conscience to take priority in future workplaces (Economic Times): According to a new study from PwC, strong corporate values will be hugely important in the future workplace. However, our survey suggests that social conscience does not stack up against compensation and bonuses.
Bonuses are making up a bigger and bigger percentage of companies’ payrolls (Washington Post): Aon Hewitt’s annual US Salary Increase survey shows that companies are devoting more of their budget to bonuses than ever before, and they expect the trend to continue.
Longer work-week looms for French workers (CNN Money): A stagnant economy may be the reason economics minister Emmanuel Macron said he is open to expanding the 35-hour work week. If the number of working hours increased, it might boost the country’s competitiveness—but the change would likely not be taken lightly by the public.
Our surveys show that companies everywhere are struggling to plan effectively for the workforce of the future—but there are variances in the way executives from different regions rate their company’s performance in terms of leadership, strategy, and skills development.
For example, companies in Asia Pacific are much more likely to say workforce issues drive strategy at the board level—but less likely to have confidence in leadership. Meanwhile, companies in North America struggle to find skilled talent and are not offering enough opportunities for their employees to develop.
Employee responses also vary significantly across regions—more on that to follow.
Job descriptions are changing fast. Employees need new skills to keep up as technology evolves and new ways of doing work—even the threat of being replaced by artificial intelligence—loom. Employee respondents to our massive global survey are concerned with their own obsolescence and want opportunities for development and a clear career path—that goes for Millennials and non-Millennials alike.
Executives are also worried about the growing skills gap—many say it is difficult to find employees with base-level and specialized skills. Despite their concern, our survey results point to a lack of understanding and effort from strategy-setters when it comes to investing time, resources, and technology in training and development for employees—executives and employees both report limited opportunities for skills development.
Investment in training and development will be increasingly important as the skills companies need become increasingly advanced and technology-based—just one of the changes that is sure to come in the 2020 workforce.
The Shifting American Workforce: Growing Legions of Freelancers and Independent Contractors (Inquisitr): Dependence on non-payroll workers is growing quickly. Though labor statistics can’t tell us exactly how many freelancers are in the workforce, we’ll need to have a better sense of these figures soon—especially as increasing reliance on these workers changes HR strategy.
Women should ‘man up’ for male-dominated fields (Economic Times): According to researchers from Michigan State University, women who described themselves with masculine traits in an experiment were more likely to be considered fit for a job than those who used traditionally feminine descriptors.
New graduates still prefer to work for state-owned firms (South China Morning Post): An annual survey of about 48,000 people conducted by ChinaHR.com shows substantial changes from last year’s results. Among them? This year, many more say they would rather start their own business than be employed by someone else, and salary expectations are rising. Despite changes, new graduates are still quite likely to say state-owned firms are their first choices for employment.
According to our survey, the need for employees with technology skills in areas like analytics, cloud, and programming will increase over the next three years. What does it take to attract top talent that meets companies’ increasingly tech-based needs?
A recent article from CIO magazine talks about some of the ways tech firms are trying to recruit elite developers. The top tactic? Money—and at many companies (mostly those based in New York and Silicon Valley), a lot of it.
What will happen if compensation turns out to be only a temporary fix for retaining talent? How important is personal satisfaction with work when the excitement over creative perks and compensation wanes?
Our survey looks at these issues and more—we’ll have answers about the benefits that matter most to employees, along with data on what companies are actually offering, in the next few weeks.
When we set out to survey employees across 27 countries, we wanted to learn what sets Millennials apart from older employees at work. What we found is that Millennials are not so different from non-Millennials, especially when it comes to job satisfaction.
But that’s not how Millennials are typically perceived in the media—this past weekend, The New York Times published a story on the vast store of articles on Millennials, many of which portray the generation as self-entitled and narcissistic in life and at work. However, the article also calls on the Pew Research Center’s 2010 reports on Millennials, which point to a generation far more complex than most think.
Millennials may be complex and difficult to define, like any other generation—but our research points to commonalities in the way Millennials and older workers perceive work and job satisfaction. More of our results to come when our research program launches next month.
Working Anything but 9 to 5 (The New York Times): For hourly employees, the uncertainty of the next week’s schedule can create chaos at home—especially for those with families.
7 Ways to Become Your Boss’ Dream Employee (Time): A relationship with a manager can be the key to success at work—and cultivating a good one starts with working to make your boss successful.
5 Simple Office Policies That Make Danish Workers Way More Happy Than Americans (FastCompany): Danish employees may be more likely to be satisfied and engaged with their jobs because of better working hours, more autonomy, and constant training, among other factors.
Would You Hire Your Hacker? (Wired): After a college student hacked into a popular messaging app, the co-founder of the company hired him on a freelance basis, recognizing that a good hacker has security expertise. Companies should consider creative hiring methods like this one—but be wary of potential consequences.
Coming soon: Our country-by-country breakdown of two massive surveys—one of 2,700 employees, the other of 2,700 executives. These country fact sheets will touch on the major themes of our research program, including:
- Millennial myths
- Employee benefits and incentives
- Talent and skills
- Learning and development
Workforce issues are increasingly global, but there are meaningful variances by country. Look out for our fact sheets with the global launch of the research program next month.
Paid family leave is a major discussion point among companies around the world. Last week, we talked about Japan’s plan to boost women’s participation in the workforce by expanding daycare options and encouraging companies to put women in leadership positions, and we’ve also discussed paternity leave in the UK and President Obama’s support for family-friendly leave policies.
While most articles point out the disadvantages of US policies toward maternity leave—it’s the only developed country that does not mandate that companies offer paid leave—a recent article from The New York Times argues that this may not be a total loss for women. In the US, women are just as likely as men to be in leadership positions; in Europe, women are half as likely as men to be managers, perhaps due to the possibility that companies discriminate against women who they fear might take long paid leaves of absence.
The article suggests that neither the US nor Europe has figured out how much paid maternity and paternity leave companies should offer. And even companies who come up with successful plans will have to modify them over time to keep up with changing cultural expectations.
How technology is bridging the gap between HR and marketing (The Guardian): As the digital world makes top customers into brand promoters, University College London professor Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic argues that companies should consider making their best customers—those who fit the company culture and are experienced brand ambassadors—part of their team.
AI, Robotics, and the Future of Jobs (Pew Research Internet Project): According to the 2014 Future of the Internet canvassing (that is, an “opt in” survey for expert technology builders and analysts), many experts think rapid advancements in AI and robotics could have a huge impact on the future of work—and that our education and political systems are not prepared for these potential changes.
Companies With Happy Employees Have Stocks That Beat The Market (Business Insider): A new study from the Wharton School and Warwick Business School has found that companies with higher employee satisfaction rates often have better stock returns.
Canadians more educated, less suited to their jobs (CTV News): According to a new study from Workopolis, many Canadians are spending more time in school but working in jobs unrelated to their training.