A Q&A with Accenture's Veerle Dero
By Debbie Bolla
What are the top trends in HR today?
Business, technology, economic, and societal trends continually play a role in shaping the future of HR.
Some of these trends include:
• Digital radically disrupts HR: Technology will enable talent management to become an integral part in the fabric of everyday business.
• Social media drives the democratization of work: As organizations rely on people at all levels to co-create solutions across boundaries, HR’s role is shifting from convincing others of their value to educating workers on how to co-create talent solutions with HR and one another.
• HR drives the agile organization: As the world becomes more volatile, organizations need to find ways to become highly agile. HR will need to support a world where people may no longer have predefined “jobs” that lock them into doing one activity.
• The rise of an extended workforce: Companies will be increasingly composed of an ever-shifting network and highly diverse global talent pool of contractors, temporary staff, business partners, outsourcing providers, and even the general public.
Darrell Ford is tasked with leading a dedicated HR team as a global organization adjusts to market needs.
By Kim Shanahan
Darrell Ford was recruited to Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), a global technology company, as SVP and CHRO three years ago in the midst of a comprehensive turnaround. A Fortune 500 company that competes directly with Intel and other global semiconductor players, AMD has more than 10,000 people in 50 locations across 31 countries and reported 2014 annual revenue of $5.5 billion. As Ford knows all too well, a turnaround CHRO requires a different type of skillset. He or she needs the courage to drive change and encourage stability while facing competing pressures and intense scrutiny on a daily basis.
Describe AMD and the current market conditions the company is facing.Darrell Ford: AMD has a 44-year history of innovation in the semiconductor space. We operate in a volatile, highly competitive market. We are historically known to be tough and scrappy, and we employ some of the best and brightest minds that I’ve ever known.
Happily Ever After
By Elliot H. Clark
Happily ever after is the way most fairy tales end, but real life has a way of making them, well, fairy tales. I had an old friend who used to say that you could tell the difference between a fairy tale and a war story because fairy tales began with “once upon a time” and war stories started “this s#*t really happened.” When it comes to HR and the selection of HR partners, it typically starts as a fairy tale and ends as a war story.
I have been concerned for years by the rise of the procurement function in HRO, RPO, MSP, and HR technology. In fairness to procurement departments and their ability to partner with HR, they bring order, data discipline, and process to the buying cycle. However, they also bring an attitude that treats many bespoke and customized solutions like commodities. And when you treat something like a commodity when you’re buying it, the product will turn into a commodity so it can be bought. Yet, real buyers of HR and the line management usually want more from the outcome than a commodity service.
EVP and CHRO Lisa Buckingham’s role expands outside of HR—and it has given her wings to fly.
By Kim Shanahan
Many HR leaders are tasked with expanding their roles beyond the basics of human resources. Lisa Buckingham, executive vice president and chief HR officer for Lincoln Financial Group, is one of those executives who is doing just that—and doing it well. She is currently responsible for HR, brand and enterprise communications, and corporate social responsibility activities for the financial services company. Headquartered in the Philadelphia region, Lincoln Financial Group is a Fortune 500 company with more than 10,000 employees. With a strong focus on four core business areas—life insurance, annuities, retirement plan services, and group protection—the business is built around supporting, preserving, and enhancing customers’ lifestyles and providing better retirement outcomes.
Recently, Buckingham shared her experiences, the value she places on her team and what she looks for in leadership, and how her expanded role has impacted her view of the HR function.
Organizations are now looking to RPO to effectively communicate their corporate reputation—and it’s working.
By Gary Bragar
Employer branding has become an integral piece to an effective talent strategy since it’s synonymous with a company’s reputation as an employer. It portrays the image of what the company is like to work for. The purpose of properly conveying and clearly communicating an employer’s brand is essential to attract, engage, develop, and retain the best talent for your organization.
Why is improving an employer’s brand so important? By properly reflecting the company’s image and what it is like to work for, higher quality talent will be attracted to the organization—and will be likely to stay. Bad hiring decisions can be attributed in part to improper alignment of potential candidates and organizational values and culture. This often results in high employee turnover.
But, if an employer’s brand is in alignment with what a candidate is seeking, employee turnover can be reduced by nearly two-thirds.
Don’t be fooled: Multi-process deals still exist. But they’ve morphed into business transformation programs.
By Jill Goldstein
The multi-process human resources outsourcing (MPHRO) industry is changing. Gone are the days of engagements purely focused on cost reduction. Today the industry is working on tailored, business-outcome focused offerings in an entirely different economic climate.
As business confidence recuperates after several tough years, spending on multi-process HR outsourcing is on the up. According to Everest Group’s Multi-Process HR Outsourcing 2014 Annual Report, between 2009 and 2012 the industry witnessed a 3 percent compound annual growth rate in both North America and Europe, the Middle East and Africa, to $1.79 billion and $1.09 billion respectively. Deal sizes increased across the board, with a significant increase in mega-deal signings. News for the future is also good: a 5 percent compound annual growth is predicted over the next two years.
By Debbie Bolla, Executive Editor
Confidence. Competition. Potential. Doing what you love.
These are a few words and phrases that made a lasting impact after my deep-dive discussion with four HR industry leaders at the HRO Today Forum this May. The quartet that joined me on stage (pictured above):
• John Wilson, Founder and CEO of WilsonHCG
• Sue Marks, CEO of Cielo
• Paul Harty, President of Seven Step RPO
• Gene Zaino, President & CEO of MBO Partners
Employee confidence levels are seemingly up, said the foursome—and forward-thinking organizations need to get in the game and take advantage of that confidence. To Wilson, competition between organizations is a signifier of an improved economy. Companies should consider how willing they are to get and keep the talent they want.
Re-Calculating the HR Equation
By Elliot H. Clark, CEO
We just held the 2014 HRO Today Forum in both North America and in Singapore. We are thrilled and gratified at the level of engagement of our audience and thankful for the opportunity to advance the practice of HR. We are also appreciative of the ongoing support of our sponsors, who are the most sophisticated HR services and technology companies in the world. Don’t miss the industry’s only global HR Forum in Edinburgh, Scotland, Nov. 11-13.
The theme for all of the HRO Today Forums is the HR Value Equation. Expressed in this form: Great HR + Great Workforce = Great Business Outcomes
It is an intuitive expression. If you have a great workforce this is due to better workforce policies. Your great workforce will produce better products, give better services, and achieve better business outcomes.
The 2014 HRO Today Awards winners are innovating their way to strategic partnerships.
By Russ Banham
Over the past generation, the people heading up HR in many organizations have become key strategic partners to their respective CEOs, entrusted to lead diverse workforce initiatives to improve talent acquisition and retention, spur business growth, enhance sustainability practices and cultivate a workforce culture that differentiates the organization.
These CHROs are transforming HR in an era where vital skill sets are increasingly difficult to come by and hold, when global outsourcing decisions have never been more complex and challenging, and when the economic environment has demanded greater cost-effectiveness, particularly with respect to finding a balance between retained labor and outsourcing. Workforce innovation is now a strategic imperative at many enterprises, and it is the CHRO who is in charge of achieving and nurturing it.