Contributors

A Variety of Thoughts

So much is going on this month that I cannot coherently share all of it, so I am going to give you a few topics and go to the lightning round.
 
 
Managed service programs. Our HRO Today magazine Baker’s Dozen Customer Satisfaction Survey Ranking is completed. We do not understand why MSP is not spreading like wildfire in the corporate world. The premise of the service is to replace disorganized spend with organized spend. It creates savings, efficiency, and offers HR talent management tools and policy options with respect to the contingent labor force. Yet many companies have not yet embraced the concept.
 
 
To demonstrate the power of this new service offering, which has been successfully deployed at hundreds of companies, we have packaged with this issue the Executive Guide to MSP, a special report from HRO Today that includes case studies, a taxonomy or glossary of standard terms, and articles on trends and how deals are sourced and governed. Please retain the Guide as a keepsake issue to refer to as you explore the possibility of MSP for your organization.
 
 
MSP is also a service with good scores in customer service. Our survey generated more than 300 responses, and we verified and used 197 in our database. The aggregate score in answer to “Overall I am/was very satisfied with my provider” was 4.5 on a 5.0 Likert scale. While we do see some scoring inflation in surveys, to be fair, this suggests the providers are working hard to satisfy the customers and are achieving great success. So if customers are happy, if they are saving money, and if they are getting better compliance and policy control at a strategic level, why isn’t everybody buying?
 
 
Innovate this. We just completed a survey of more than 100 technology buyers and providers. The response pool was evenly split, and we were pleased with the seniority and “gravitas” of the sample. We wanted to see why the issue of innovation is such a constant source of confusion and angst. We asked a series of questions about perceptions. We asked about perceptions of feedback, user group conferences or advisory sessions, etc. Our results were stunning. It is not as though the users are angry or upset. But the feedback from the two groups is very, very different about how they view innovation.
 
 
Many times, we can match the feedback from providers and users of the same products and see the gap in perception, but we would rather make this about a market issue than individual companies. Much more analysis needs to be done, but the word innovation itself may be the problem. We will present the results at the HR Demo Show/HRO Today Forum (it will be discussed with an analyst panel and you can catch the video online in June at www.hrdemoshow.com). We will cover this survey in depth in the June issue of the magazine, so stay tuned : You will not want to miss this report.
 
 
HRO Today Global. We have rebadged HRO Today Europe magazine. It has been renamed HRO Today Global edition. Why? Because HRO is so global that one continent is so heavily interlinked with another that you cannot have a magazine just for Europe anymore—or just for Asia. In fact, last year at the HRO Today Summit Europe in Amsterdam, one of the delegates told me that the European market is the gateway to the world economy and made a pretty compelling argument. All of the providers in our coverage universe are now global, and most of their clients are multinational corporations.
 
 
HRO is growing in popularity in APAC at the same strong rate the economy is growing in that region. Last year our first HRO Today Summit APAC drew a very, very respectable 120 senior level delegates. This exceeded our goal by about 20 delegates. As I am typing this, I am flying to Singapore for the second HRO Today Summit APAC. We planned for 130 to 150 delegates, and this morning when I left we had 197 registrants and climbing. (The room we booked only holds 160, so we are scrambling with the hotel.) Interest in HRO is skyrocketing in APAC, and we need to produce a magazine that is reflective of that so we now produce HRO Today magazine and HRO Today Global edition. By the way, if you want proof that the providers are global, as I am writing this column for HRO Today magazine in seat 21A, Mike Beygelman from Adecco is five rows behind me in 26B writing the RPO column. We have 19 hours in the air. I sent a text message before we took off to Dirk Olin, our VP and editorial director, that Mike and I would make deadline.

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