Not in it for the Money

Executive recruiters say there’s a good reason HR professionals don’t get the outrageous bonuses given to some in the finance industry.

They just don’t care that much about the money, they say, according to an article on eFinancial Careers, a UK job board that is part of Dice.

Instead, says one recruiter, HR leaders are “driven by the relationship they have with the line manager and what’s going on in the business.”

I’m sure money would be nice, too!

Recruiting at its Finest?

Included in an ad by an IT staffing company seeking a technical writer to focus on proposals to Chinese businesses: “An arrogant American will not work well in this role.”

The company, Viva USA of Rolling Meadows, Ill., who apparently was searching for workers on behalf of Exelon Nuclear Partners, subsequently took the ad down and apologized, according to Fox News.

It was “a mistake,” a company spokeswoman says, noting the language was approved by a “junior recruiter.”

True. It was pretty juvenile.

Fussing about HR

Most HR leaders will understandably have a negative reaction to a column by Sathnam Sanghera in the (UK) Times Online, in which she offers a major diss to the profession:

“HR people … think they play a vital role in business and for that reason regard themselves as, if anything, underpaid. When Mercer compared the pay of HR, marketing and finance directors in 14 countries in its Global Pay Summary, a number of trade publications pointed out that HR was the lowest-paid of the three. I would say it is much more notable, given how little contribution HR makes, that Mercer found that UK human resources directors are the second-highest-paid in the world, behind the United States.”

She also notes that she doesn’t “value HR: the fuss that HR makes about itself seems to far outstrip its contribution,” saying too many HR departments “are self-serving, neurotic and navel-gazing.”

Succession Problems Now a Fashion Issue?

The recent and unexpected death of noted fashion designer Alexander McQueen has left the fashion world stunned, none moreso than those who worked for McQueen’s label. This New York Times story takes a look at how other big-name fashion houses have fared after their creator died.

Admittedly, the fashion world is as different from the corporate world as a stiletto heel is to a flip-flop, but it does beg the HR question: Could your organization survive and thrive if its leader was to unexpectedly pass on without a succession plan in place?

Disconnect on Pay

In the latest report from tech career board, Dice, Tom Silver, senior vice president for North America, writes of the “interesting disconnect between the people who manage technology staffs every day, and the HR professionals who assist them.”

“When we asked them to pick the most significant impediment to increasing their tech team’s motivation, technology leaders said ‘pay.’ However, HR managers picked ‘none,’ because their tech teams ‘were already motivated.’ “


IT workers are no different than other worker bees. All of that “doing more with less” leads to fatigue (his term), and that manifests itself “in many ways, including a desire for higher pay and the possibility for a workplace change.”

Whether those disgruntled workers actually ” ‘vote with their feet’ ” to pursue more promising opportunities at other companies is the question all HR leaders — and many corporate executives — are pondering.

And they should.

Here’s HREOnline’s latest look at the salary situation.

Colts vs. Saints

Three of four employers say there’s an office pool floating around for the big game on Sunday, according to the Society for Human Resource Management — and more than half say that’s a good thing as it has a positive impact on employee morale.

Of course, that morale shift might depend on whether a worker’s team ends up on top or not. (Personally, I’m in favor of block pools, so I just root for the score!)

Oh, and one-third of the workplaces have policies regulating pools and fantasy leagues, although few discipline (4 percent) or terminate (2 percent) anyone for violations.

It Ain’t Much

A settlement between the U.S. Department of Labor and Pilgrim’s Pride over “doffing and donning” protective work clothes such as smocks, aprons and gloves required for their jobs at s plant in Dallas, totals $1 million. But divided among the 800 current and former employees, it amounts to about $1,250 per person.

The company — which admitted no wrongdoing — agreed to modify it’s “time collection process.”

Priorities for Leadership Development

A UK study of 2,500 HR and learning professionals finds that organizations are gearing up for life after recession.

Organizations are focusing effort on “those individuals who they expect will lead their organisations into a future yet to be created. Softer skills, in leadership styles and in leadership coaching for instance, that bring out the very best in people and facilitate team working are also a priority.”

Leadership development was the most important priority of the respondents, with the development of middle managers also considered extremely important with 67 percent naming it as their first or second priority — compared to only 35 percent rating leadership development for senior managers in their top five.

Maybe it’s a good thing hope for reform is fading

Seven in 10 employers say healthcare reform will increase the overall cost of healthcare services in the United States. Nearly the same amount say it will increase the cost of their benefit programs.

That’s according to a new Towers Watson/National Business Group on Health survey.

Also, nearly half of employers believe reform — if ever adopted — will decrease employer-sponsored offerings of retiree medical benefits.

Inside vs. Outside

A Rice University study finds a long-term benefit to promoting CEOs from within vs. hiring an outsider.

There was little difference found at first — both insiders and outsiders tended to make changes once appointed — but “as tenure increases, obvious opportunities for cost cutting and divestment dry up [for outsiders],” says Anthea Zhang, co-author of the study and a management professor at Rice.

“Inside CEOs, because of their deep knowledge and root in the firm, are more likely to initiate and implement strategic changes that can build the firm’s long-term competitive advantage,” she says.