Office Coffee Culture – What It Is & What Are Its Benefits

Unless you’re running a macabre sort of theme park complete with models of corpses, jump scare tunnels, actors donned like Klaus Kinski in that Nosferatu apparel, and perhaps a photoshopped image of the Bush family complete with Illuminati capes on, that can either seem a lark or positively disturbing (depending on your disposition that day), a dejected atmosphere at work will only make the productivity in the workplace grind towards a slow, drudging halt.

Take offices, for example.

Being stuck in a cubicle for eight hours every day can in and of itself be a nightmarish prospect. Imagine, then, what would this sort of situation look like if the employees didn’t have a short space for respite and refreshment!

It’d be a disaster.

Well, then. To prevent this, as an employer, one of the best courses of action would be to organize a refreshment station.

Now, since most people in this day and age drink coffee on a regular basis, why not venture to install a coffee machine to make your employees happy and not sad.

That’s right! – Fostering a healthy coffee-based office culture is the new, ehrm,… mini skirt! No, it isn’t. Oh, well, it’s still better than nothing. Plus, there are benefits.

Read forth to find out what.

What is Office Coffee Culture?

A office-bound coffee culture is not a conglomeration of gut bacteria that you can pick up from your office.

It’s a way of connecting to your colleagues as an employee, and creating an interesting platform for respite and convivial talks between your employees, as an employer.

The idea is simple – designate a small area of your office for this purpose, get a coffee machine, encourage your employees to take full advantage of it, et voila!- you’ve got yourself an office-bound coffee culture!

Benefits of a Coffee-Centered Office Culture

A Conversation Starter

Other than representing a way to get some rest after a tough round of work, so to speak, coffee breaks tend to be a great way to jump-start a conversation between your employees.

Loneliness and boredom are probably the worst issues that pester the working man and woman, so introducing an environment of leisure and relaxation will surely contribute to the overall atmosphere at work.

What’s more, getting your subordinates to talk to each other will no doubt encourage them to find better solutions related to work itself!

Encourages Creative Thinking

It’s difficult finding a new solution to a problem if all you do every day for eight hours is simply stare at a screen and type on the keyboard. Exchanging ideas between themselves and even expressing their annoyance at this problem in the office or another is likely to lead to some conclusions and perhaps solutions for the issues at hand.

Remember, some of the best solutions seem to shyly come to us in the most unlikely shapes and at the most unlikely times, such as sitting on the john, for example.

Newton had his lightbulb moment when an apple fell on its noggin, as well.

A Happiness Boost

Let’s not forget the main deal, either.

Coffee is one of the greatest legal brain stimulants, and drinking it in moderation can do wonders for endorphin production and hence your mood and productivity while at work.

Indeed, as long as you don’t overdo it, having a cup or two at work can turn you into a typing machine if you’re a copywriter, for example, let’s say.

Unless you’ve recently quit coffee, that is. In that case, bring a prayerbook to work and proceed to pray in French and Latin every time you feel like your energy levels are down in the gutter. French and Latin, that’s right, and you’ll also want to say these loud and clear.

Jokes aside, coffee can be a great device of betterment, not only for your respectable tummy, but also for your socializing skills at work. If you’re an employer, take time to consider installing that coffee machine.

undeperformance employee

Managing Underperformance in Staff

In the ideal workplace, your employees have a clear understanding of their responsibilities, produce a high quality of work, provided the resources they needed to accomplish the task, and driven and motivated to perform to their best. But reality shows that this isn’t always the case. At some point, you’re going to encounter performance issues with your staff.

Underperformance is something you can recognize easily. The first thing you should take note of is their work quality. You’ll notice they’re underperforming if they’re producing unsatisfactory work outputs, avoiding responsibility or reduced productivity. Your employee might need to improve and develop the skills required for their tasks.

Another way to spot underperformance is by determining if they’re breaching work practices, procedures, and rules. If you notice them arriving late and leaving early frequently, regularly calling in sick, harassing other employees, they might be lacking morale or motivation.

Procrastination and inability to concentrate are also some indicators. Usually, this tends to happen when they’re affected by “off-the-job” issues or personal problems.

It is also important to correctly and accurately identify the problems, so you’d be able to take appropriate action. An effective performance management systems can lead to happier, more motivated and better-performing employees.

In this infographic by Healthy Business Builder, learn a few tips on how to manage underperformance in your staff.

Managing Underperformance in Staff

3 Reasons to Implement AI in Your Workplace

There are a lot of misconceptions concerning artificial intelligence circulating in public discourse. Classical works of science-fiction have taught us to think about A.I. either in terms of killer robots, god-like computers, and sly androids, or as the saviors of mankind in the form of automated workers, benevolent star-ship operators, or friendly house servants. The truth is, at least in the present moment, that contemporary artificial intelligence systems are much less proficient at things we thought they would be good at according to works of fiction. However, they are simultaneously pretty skilled and efficient at performing other kinds of tasks, albeit ones which are not as immediately awe-inspiring and spectacular.

There are many websites that deal with improving your business in different ways, such as Bootstrap Business, however, in this article, we will examine how artificial intelligence is being introduced into the realm of everyday business operations. While these applications of A.I. might not seem impressive at first, they are nonetheless transforming the way we work in important ways, and here is how.

Data-Analysis

One of the defining features of A.I., and computer science, in general, is the use of formal syntax. Code is structured according to a strict set of rules, which is what allows it to communicate with hardware in order to perform particular tasks. A beneficial side-effect of the formal nature of code is that it is especially suited for working on problems which are expressed in a similarly formal language. This is why computers are so good at doing math. A less obvious example of where the computational power of A.I. can be used is in the legal profession. The law is also a system of strict rules and regulations, which are expressed in precise terminology. This makes it suitable for machine analysis. For instance, court rulings can be analyzed for particular terms in order to find a common pattern, i.e. that cases which involve a particular offense are more likely to be resolved in favor of the defense. A.I. systems can go through millions of case files in a fraction of the time it would take a person, giving legal experts a powerful tool for understanding and predicting court outcomes.

Document Generation

Not only can A.I. assist with analysis, it can also produce data of the same kind it analyzes. By establishing that there are patterns in the way particular kinds of language are used, the A.I. gains the ability to mimic them. For example, if you feed a large number of similarly structured financial reports into an A.I. capable of machine-learning, it will eventually figure out how to write them itself. To give you an idea of how this works, imagine you have simple spreadsheet document with one column representing countries, and another representing their GDP. We can use this document to reach and express certain conclusions, such as that the GDP of the USA is bigger than Brazil’s for instance. However, doing this for every possible relation between the given data would take a long time to write for a person. Fortunately for us, an A.I. can figure out that the formal relation between columns can be expressed in a natural language such as we used above. This makes it possible to automatically generate things like financial reports, meteorological predictions, email invitations, etc. Should this spark your interest, a plethora of good advice can be found on Infinigeek.

Virtual Assistants

Another area where A.I. found its use is in automating standard office procedures. The functioning of every workplace depends on a host of repetitive activities which are not directly related to the services a company provides, but are nonetheless essential for everyday functioning. This includes arranging meetings, communicating memos, keeping track of case files, finding relevant documents, replying to common customer etc. This used to be the task of various middle management types, but recently virtual A.I. assistants have started taking over this line of work. Keeping track of important but uninteresting information is something A.I. excel at, and people find boring and mundane, so it makes sense to leave this kind of work to them. In other words, A.I. assistants can work in tandem with IT services departments to drastically reduce office busywork and red tape through technological means. This allows employees to focus on solving challenging, creative tasks, instead of concerning themselves with trivial work.

Conclusion

A.I. systems are making more and more inroads into the world of everyday work. And yet a lot of their potential still remains completely untapped. While it is hard to make concrete predictions about what the future holds for, we can at least be certain that it will involve more and more A.I. in the positions of fellow workers, instead of just tools.

How Technology Can Help to Prevent Workplace Stress

We spend over eight hours a day, five days a week at work.

Some of us may even spend more of our waking hours with our colleagues than our families.

It’s therefore important that our working lives leave us happy and fulfilled.

Sadly, studies show that one in four of us will suffer from a mental health condition in our lifetime.

Spending so much of our waking time at work, it’s inevitable that work will affect our mental health.

Too much pressure or long-term stress can cause employees to burn out, leaving them with less energy to function in and out of work.

Too little work – or a lack of stimulation – can also lead to stress. Employees feel under-fulfilled, like they’re wasting their time, and want to be anywhere but at work.

The more stressed employees are, the less work they get done, and the more businesses suffer.

Embracing technological innovations puts employees back in control of how they spend their time at work and greatly reduces the risks of stress and burnout.

Here are four ways technology can make employees feel more fulfilled, and help to prevent workplace stress.

Organize and coordinate schedules

Trying to find a time when a team can meet to discuss something important can often take as long – sometimes even longer – than the meeting itself.

If it’s an important or last-minute meeting, trying to get everyone together can cause employees huge amounts of stress.

There’s always a risk of someone being double-booked because they didn’t check their calendar before agreeing to a suggested time.

This then causes more stress because the meeting needs to be rescheduled.

Calendar connectivity means that this process can be automated, preventing double-bookings and avoiding any stress the process could cause.

Instead of long email chains or back-and-forth phone calls, the person organizing the meeting can tell the software whom they need in the meeting. It can then suggest a list of times when everyone is free to meet. If calendars are set up for bookable resources such as meeting rooms or parking spaces, it can incorporate this into its calculations too.

Connecting an employees’ calendar to HR software also means that they don’t need to switch between applications to keep track of their schedules.

Speed up and streamline complicated processes

On the surface, organizing interviews seems like an easy process, but with so many candidates and interview panellists to coordinate, it quickly becomes laborious.

Hiring managers can spend as many as 20 hours a month organizing interviews.

Automating this process gives hiring managers more time to spend on other tasks, saves interview panellists from having to constantly flit between their calendar and emails, and allows candidates to book their interviews discreetly.

Another process that can be automated is the organization of staff appraisals. In large organizations, this process can be particularly time-consuming.

However, when employees are calendar connected, software can work out the best times for an employee to meet their manager and automatically add the appointments to their calendar. No matter what size their team is, the process is instant.

Offering training programs for employees to expand their skills further breaks up the tedium of the daily routine.

Training programs don’t just have to take place at work, either.

There are thousands of online courses out there, and many of them are free.

Many industries also have their own courses or week-long events that employees can attend to network and get a change of scenery.

Giving employees new ways to learn and grow helps to spark new ideas that they can bring back to the workplace.

Learning new skills is also an effective way to prevent stagnation and keep employees interested in their work.

Monitor employee wellbeing

Looking after employees is a key part of HR.

New technology means HR teams can track how employees feel and gain an insight into how different teams work.

They can also encourage employees to get up and get moving by offering incentives such as fitness trackers.

Communication tools such as Slack give employees the opportunity to keep in touch whether they work in the same building or different parts of the country.

Tools like this can be key for managers and HR staff to keep informed of how employees are getting along, particularly if they work remotely full- or part-time.

Let employees take control of their schedules

The more things a person has floating around in their mind, the more difficult it is for them to organize their thoughts.

When employees have a lot to do and nowhere to organize their time, it’s inevitable that something will be forgotten.

Taking advantage of technology allows them to use it for everything from creating to-do lists in Trello to tracking customer queries in Zendesk.

Giving employees somewhere they can make a note of everything they have to do means that they spend less time trying to remember everything and more time getting things done.

The technology you provide for your employees matters

Richard Branson once said that if you “look after your staff. They’ll look after your customers. It’s that simple.”

When employees feel overwhelmed or overworked, they’re less productive and less able to help a business to grow.

Employees are what make a business a success.

Choosing the right people is crucial, but that’s only part of it.

If you don’t look after them, they won’t be as good to your business as they could be.

By nurturing employees, making them feel appreciated, and giving them opportunities to learn and grow, it not only benefits them, but the business, too.

The more knowledge employees acquire in their industry, the more they can use this to create a better customer experience and increase company revenue.

This then means the company can grow and increase its profits faster.

Everyone wins.


Source: How Technology Can Help to Prevent Workplace Stress | Cronofy Calendar API

About Cronofy

Cronofy connects HR software to users’ calendars via a unified calendar API.

To discover how calendar sync can save you and your users time and money, and help to hire the best candidates, watch our Real-Time Scheduling video.

Riyadh Header

Saudi Vision 2030 on the Agenda for Inaugural HR Tech Saudi Summit 2017

Leading HR and IT decision-makers will gather to discuss next generation HR challenges and new frameworks proposed under Saudi Vision 2030.

HR Tech Saudi Summit

Dubai, August 31 2017 — As the Fourth Industrial Revolution continues to transform the workplace with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Automation becoming increasingly prevalent across industries, Dubai-based B2B event specialist QnA International, has unveiled plans for a first-of-its-kind summit to discuss the unique challenges this will place on HR and IT departments in Saudi Arabia.

Being the only event dedicated to HR Technology in the Kingdom, the HR Tech Saudi Summit, taking place 20-21 November 2017 in Riyadh, will unite HR executives with the IT industry in Saudi Arabia at a time when the Kingdom is making significant investments in leading technology solutions, in line with Saudi Vision 2030.

QnA Director Mr. Sidh N C

Sidh N.C., Director, QnA International, said: “The debut of the HR Tech Saudi Summit comes at a time when Saudi Arabia is moving towards digitization and hence uniquely placed to welcome the collaboration between the HR and IT capabilities. The summit is the first of its kind in the Kingdom to address the technological revolution underway in the workplace and debate how best to harness its capacity for the success of business in the public, private and government sectors”

In line with Saudi Vision 2030, the Kingdom has pledged to increase investments in technology in order to continue leading the digital transformation of the region. Under the King Salman Program for Human Capital Development, 500,000 government employees will receive training to upskill by 2020. All Ministries and Government institutions will be required to adopt best practice in Human Capital Development and other organisations will be tasked with enhancing engagement and the employee experience.

Enabled by mobile, remote and real time connectivity, digital HR processes now reach beyond payroll and data capture to incorporate functions such as interviewing, performance management and KPI review. The technology exists for employees in larger organisations to share concerns and feedback, or even complete training remotely, through mobile video.

Sidh N.C. added: “With discussion focusing on the latest HR technology trends, innovations and disruptive ideas, the HR Tech Saudi Summit will help leaders from the HR and IT departments to collaborate on effective solutions to modern human challenges.”

The launch of HR Tech Saudi Summit, follows the three successful editions of HR Tech MENA Summit in Dubai. The 3rd edition of HR Tech MENA took place in May 2017 under the theme of Revolutionizing the Future of Work with discussions ranging from the challenges of rapid technological developments to the need for enhancement of workplaces.

About HR Tech Saudi Summit

Reshaping the Kingdom's Workplace

The HR Tech Saudi Summit is the only initiative that brings together HR and IT professionals from the unique business landscape of Saudi Arabia, on a singular platform, to discuss the newest trends, ideas and disruptions over a period of two days exclusively dedicated to and focused on HR Technology.

Technology today has revolutionized every step of our lives and Human Resources is no different. The influence of technology on our evolution is paramount to making it imperative for HR to keep abreast with newest developments.

Today, HR is en route to becoming smart HR. Concepts such as bog data, cloud, social media, mobility, and gamification are today’s buzzwords and every organization is keen to embrace them in tackling the key issues of talent acquisition, talent management, change management and employee engagement.

Organiser: About QnA International

QnA International

QnA International creates and delivers business learning and development exchange platforms through B2B conferences, bespoke events and trainings. The company also has an expertise in outsourced sponsorship sales and key account management.

CEO’s Corner: Charlene Li on Technology and Employee Experience

Charlene Li

In the end of June 2017 CEO’s Corner post put a spotlight on Charlene Li, Principal Analyst at Altimeter (a Prophet Company) and keynote at this year’s HR TechXpo. Li supports leaders to thrive with disruption, primarily focusing on creating business strategies and developing leadership around digital, social, and emerging technologies. An analyst since 1999, and having seen business, society, and the world undergo seismic changes over the last 18 years, she’s driven to create research and thought leadership that helps to bring greater clarity and inspire audacious actions.

The interview is hosted by Greg Mortona corporate strategy and growth development specialist and Chief Executive Officer of the Northern California HR Association.

Q: You talk about the seismic changes that have recently occurred in the workplace. Besides the obvious impacts of technology, virtual work, and social media, what’s a change you are observing that most people are underestimating? 

A: One of the biggest overlooked opportunities is thinking about the employee experience, as opposed to employee engagement. Employee experience is when you look at a situation through the eyes of the employee, and focus on how the day-to-day experience creates a deeper relationship between the organization and employees. This is a significant shift for HR who must shift from managing transactions (recruiting, hiring, evaluations) and risk mitigation (training and compliance) to nurturing relationships. Technologies makes this easier but it’s only when technology fades into the background, and the relationship work comes forward, that the experience becomes a differentiator to the employee.

Q: What is the biggest takeaway you hope readers get from The Engaged Leader?[i]

A: Relationships form the foundation for leadership and I hope that by reading the book, people understand that digital channels must be part of the repertoire of skills leaders use to develop relationships. My hope is that readers are inspired to hit the pause button on their busy day and take a few minutes to reflect on how they need to be better engaged — even if it means simply listening to the people crucial to the achievement of their goals.

Q: We’re getting ready for our 2nd Annual HR TechXpo which last year was quite an exciting event showcasing the intersection of HR and Technology. You have talked to hundreds of providers, so are probably not easily wowed. What are one or two technological features you have seen in HR solutions that have knocked your socks off?

A: I’m excited to see SaaS-based strategy planning and execution tools getting traction in the market from companies like StrategyBlocks and Cascade. The software makes explicit and transparent the strategic plan of the organization, so that everyone across the organization is connected to the strategy. This means it’s clear how what you do every day impacts the long term strategy. It takes the idea of “connected workforce” and gives it a direction and objective, where the purpose of the connection is a strategic objective. This is exciting for HR because it ties together HR functions (workforce management, performance evaluation) and ties it directly to strategy and business outcomes.

You can find Charlene Li on LinkedIn and on Twitter.

You can find Greg Morton on LinkedIn or on Twitter.

[i] Charlene Li. The Engaged Leader: A Strategy for Your Digital Transformation – Wharton Digital Press, 2015

Banner HR TechXpo 2017

2nd Annual HR TechXpo will take place on August 25, 2017 in Hilton Union Square, San Francisco.

The HR Tech Weekly® readers get a free registration! Enter promo code hrtechweekly at time of checkout when you register here: http://hrtechxpo.com/register.

Please use #HRTechXpo to share the news about this exciting event showcasing the intersection of HR and Technology.

If you’d like to comment or have further questions for Charlene Li or Greg Morton, you are welcome to leave your reply here or post on social media adding #CEOCorner.


Source: CEO’s Corner: Charlene Li on Technology and Employee Experience

Is HR Responsible for Web Security? | Featured Image

Is HR Responsible for Web Security?

Is HR Responsible for Web Security? | Image 1

It is safe to say that cybersecurity should be among a business’s top priorities. While malware like WannaCry spreads around the globe, ruining company after company, small and large businesses alike should be focused on strengthening their digital defenses and building a workplace culture focused on security. Undoubtedly, most HR professionals will wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment – but many won’t lift a finger to address gaps in their employers’ cybersecurity.

There are often concerns over who should build and maintain cybersecurity within a business. On one hand, security software is installed on tech devices, which belong in IT’s wheelhouse. Then again, a security breach affects customer relations, so perhaps the customer service department should ensure every device is protected. However, the truth is that HR should take the bulk of the responsibility for keeping a business safe. Here’s why.

HR Protects the Business and Its People

Through incentivization efforts, behavior-monitoring, policy-setting, management of resources, and more, HR departments work to reinforce the integrity of the business’s foundation: its people. Furthermore, HR provides support for the business, its employees, and ultimately its customers, assisting in the achievement of personal and organizational goals that benefit everyone. Because security should be a primary goal for modern businesses, web security measures should be a top concern for HR departments, too.

When a cyberattack is successful, it isn’t just the faceless company that suffers. Often, employee private information, perhaps including payment data, is leaked as well as business-related financial information. Conversely, a business’s tech assets are hardly imperiled by hackers, who are rarely interested in destroying software or able to impact hardware, so the IT department has little to fear from cyberattack. Because HR serves the business and its employees, who are most threatened by cyber-dangers, HR should work to ensure such data is well-protected by comprehensive web security software.

Is HR Responsible for Web Security? | Image 2

HR Influences Corporate Culture

Yet, effective security software is just one piece of the cyber-protection puzzle. Security experts assert that more often than not, a business’s employees are responsible for data breaches and successful cyberattacks. After all, it is the employees who visit questionable websites, who open shady emails, who click suspicious links, and who fail to install timely updates. Because HR is responsible for employee behavior, HR professionals should actively work against these unhealthy and insecure practices by influencing the culture of the workplace.

HR already has a massive impact on corporate culture. Recruiting efforts can target certain personalities, which form the foundation of a workplace culture. Additionally, HR designs policies and guidelines which shape how employees behave. HR departments should use this sway to establish a culture focused on security. Hiring security-minded workers, hosting regular security trainings, and instilling the idea that security is everyone’s job are ways to ensure employees are aware and alert to security.

HR Understands Compliance Rules

There are all sorts of laws and regulations outlining how businesses should behave, and HR should be familiar with all of them to keep the business safe from fines, litigation, and worse. Often, these rules concern payment minimums and structures, mandatory vacation time, and termination means and methods – but increasingly, the government is turning its attention to online behavior. Already, seven major industries have compliance obligations for digital data. Because HR professionals are already well-versed in adhering to compliance rules, it is hardly a stretch for them to understand burgeoning security regulations. Instead of trying to manage compliance and action in different departments, businesses can streamline the process by giving HR total control over web security efforts.

HR Relies on Technology

These days, every aspect of a business relies on technology – including the HR department. HR professionals use all sorts of digital tools to manage their workforces, from payroll platforms to internal messaging services to online recruitment processes. Should a business’s network be compromised by cyberattack, HR will be as unable to complete their tasks as any other department. If for no other reason than this, HR should be concerned about internet security.

Security failures are bad for business, but they are particularly bad for HR. Because HR departments’ goals align with those of security efforts – and because HR professionals are already well-equipped to handle the intricacies of cybersecurity – HR should be responsible for a business’s web security.

About the Author:

Tiffany Rowe

Tiffany Rowe is a leader in marketing authority, she assists Seek Visibility and our clients in contributing resourceful content throughout the web. Tiffany prides herself in her ability to create and provide high quality content that audiences find valuable. She also enjoys connecting with other bloggers and collaborating for exclusive content in various niches. With many years of experience, Tiffany has found herself more passionate than ever to continue developing content and relationship across multiple platforms and audiences.


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Attract and Retain Millennial Employees with Workplace Technology

Attract and Retain Millennial Employees with Workplace Technology

Written by Atif Siddiqi, Founder and CEO at Branch Messenger.

Business People Group Talking

When was the last time you saw a Millennial take out a piece of paper and write a note on it?

It probably took you a moment to think about that. It’s because Millennials usually take notes on their phones. They are the first generation to grow up using mobile devices and technology as their primary means of communication. As they enter the workforce, they expect to be able to communicate using technology and in the most modern ways possible. They want to have the newest, bestest technologies that allow them to operate as efficiently as possible.

How do you get these uber-efficient employees in the door and keep them? I’ll explain three ways to figure out the specific workplace technologies you will need and then cover four workplace technologies Millennials expect from all employers.

3 ways to figure out the workplace technologies you need:

  • Ask your current Millennial employees which technologies they are already using on the job. Your best source of figuring out what a Millennial wants is from other Millennials. Once you know the technologies they are already using, evaluate whether or not it would be appropriate to officially roll out the technologies to every worker.
  • Literally no Millennials in your workforce? Ask your peers in similar workplaces which technologies they are using and couldn’t live without. Once again, evaluate if it would be a good fit for your specific business and then implement!
  • Visit the app store and view the top apps in the category it is obvious your company is behind-the-times with. Read the reviews. Download a few free ones that people are generally raving about. Give them a spin yourself and then decide which ones are the best in your opinion. Ask a few of your employees to download your top picks, use them for a bit, and then report back to you which ones they thought were the best. Pick the one the vast majority of employees are now chomping at the bit to use and implement throughout your company.

4 workplace technologies Millennials expect:

  • Mobile devices

Millennials want to be able to access information at a moment’s notice while they are working and not near a stationary resource (computer or phone). Mobile devices allow them to quickly find the information required so they don’t need to drop everything, walk to the front of the store, log into a computer, and look it up.

  • Digital communication platform

Millennials are used to chatting with their peers in group messages. They want to be able to pick up their mobile devices and instantly communicate with their co-workers.

  • Digital scheduling

Remember that whole Millennials-take-notes-on-their-phones thing I previously mentioned? Same goes for their schedules. They put their schedules on their phones and set reminders. Make it easier for them to automatically access their schedule by posting it on an internal website or using a scheduling app.

  • Wi-Fi

Technology is basically useless without access to the internet. Wi-Fi is necessary so that employees don’t need to use their own data networks while at work, which are often not the same speed and spotty for service. With company Wi-Fi, everyone has equal access.

By going through these steps, you are sure to have the technologies in place to entice Millennial workers.

About the Author:

Atif Siddiqi, Founder and CEO at Branch Messenger

Atif Siddiqi is the Founder and CEO at Branch Messenger, a free team messaging and engagement app for shift workers. An LA native, Atif relocated the company to Minnesota to participate in the TechStars & Target Retail Accelerator Program. Branch has thousands of employees that rely on the app from companies like Target, Taco Bell, AutoZone, 24 Hour Fitness and more.

You may contact Atif on LinkedIn and Twitter.


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HR Your Way

HR Your Way

How the next-generation digital workplace can power a deeply personalized HR customer experience

Business disruption is rampant—new business models, new technologies, a challenging economic environment, and the overall quickening pace of business are all disruptive to “business as usual.” Workforce demographics and trends—retiring boomers, high-expectation millennials, workforce-on-demand models, team-based work—are another disruption. It is incumbent on HR to find ways to “hack” these disruptions for their customers, leveraging the digital workplace to customize the HR customer experience according to each individual’s unique needs in the face of this almost constant change.

To better understand how the next-generation digital workplace can counter disruptions by powering a deeply personalized HR customer experience, let’s flash forward about 10 years to 2027. This is when we could see the first cohort of Gen Z employees—engage in their organization’s open enrollment process for benefits.

Our Gen Z futuristic scenario envisions three hypothetical levels of digital workplace “chatbots” at increasing levels of sophistication:

  • Workflow Adviser—assists the HR customer through the life or work event workflow using natural language, while automatically gathering data from disparate systems and tapping into available training, research, and operational services support resources.
  • Solution Adviser—“understands” desired outcomes and leverages all available internal and external data to design and propose an optimized solution for the HR customer.
  • Human Adviser—“empathizes” with the human emotions and feelings likely involved in the HR customer’s decision process, and provides support—or referral to an actual human—as required.

Future forward to Gen Z

Jamie, an employee and a new mom, along with her husband, Liam, kick off the enrollment workflow in Jamie’s digital workplace and are greeted by the chatbot who will be assisting them through the workflow.

The chatbot explains that, set at the level of Workflow Adviser, it has the capability to listen, understand natural language, and talk back, and is also able to interpret the context of Jamie and Liam’s questions in order to suggest relevant training, research, or operational services assistance as they work through the open enrollment process.

As a bonus, the chatbot explains, it has recently been upgraded to a beta version of the Solution Adviser level. So if Jamie would like to explore this advanced level of digital workplace engagement, the chatbot will be able to understand desired outcomes and leverage Jamie and Liam’s demographic, health, and financial data, as well as cloud-based benefits solution provider data, to effectively personalize a recommended package of benefits.

Jamie authorizes the chatbot to use its Solution Adviser capabilities for her open enrollment process. After a structured conversation driven by the chatbot, she is rewarded with a customized portfolio of company benefits that are customized for her family’s unique health needs and financial resources. After a discussion with the Solution Adviser chatbot to clarify the details, Jamie verbally accepts the recommended portfolio of benefits and completes the open enrollment process.

Toward a true AI model for HR

So, what’s going on behind the scenes in our futuristic scenario, and how far are we from being able to deliver this hyper-personalized experience? Let’s drill a bit deeper into the chatbot’s capabilities at the Solution Adviser level by considering one element of the benefits package—long-term disability insurance—the chatbot recommended.

At the Solution Adviser level, the chatbot was permitted to leverage Liam’s personal health records, (which included information about a mild attack of unexplained vertigo that sent him to the ER six months prior), as well as financial income and liabilities information (indicating the couple was living paycheck-to-paycheck with very little savings). By leveraging this information, along with the context gathered through a structured conversation with Jamie and Liam, the chatbot was able to conclude with a reasonable degree of probability that covering a portion of Liam’s expected future income in the event of an unexpected disability made sense for the couple.

Impressive to be sure. But this ability to use natural language to understand context in order to make reasoned judgments about desired outcomes isn’t even the end of the line. Interestingly, and perhaps just a bit frighteningly, true AI is reserved for what we call the Human Adviser level. Here, the chatbot actually understands the human situation, demonstrates empathy with HR customer feelings, and even engages in humor opportunistically to build a deeper bond of understanding with those it has been designed to serve. Of course, at this level of sophistication, the chatbot would also discern, given the nature of the HR customer’s questions, when a referral to an actual human on the operational services team may be in order.

Hacking the disruption

While the advanced cognitive and empathetic capabilities we are ascribing to our next-generation Solution Adviser and Human Adviser digital workplace chatbots are in the infant stages today, we are making rapid advances at the Workflow Adviser level of sophistication for Deloitte’s own digital workplace solution.

As we increase digital workplace capabilities, however, we may find that the process of benefits enrollment itself has become disrupted by our technology advances, and a complete rethink of how benefits are packaged, priced, and administered will likely not be far behind. After all, disruption tends to breed more disruption—which, by the way, is why achieving sustainable HR is so imperative.

About the Authors:

Michael Gretczko is a principal with Deloitte Consulting LLP and the practice leader for Digital HR & Innovation. He focuses on helping clients fundamentally change how they operate, often working with large, complex, global organizations to guide transformation programs that enable HR organizations to reinvent the way they leverage digital to improve the employee experience and business performance.

Daniel John Roddy  is a specialist leader with Deloitte Consulting LLP and a member of the Digital HR & Innovation team. He focuses on leveraging his decades of global HR transformation experience to develop and promote thought leadership that helps create breakthrough opportunities for our clients. 

Copyright © 2017 Deloitte Development LLC. All rights reserved.


Source: HR your way | Michael Gretczko | Pulse | LinkedIn

Employee Experience – The XXI Century Corporate Super Power

Written by João Duarte, Content Director at Tap My Back.

Interviewing Jacob Morgan

Jacob Morgan is a 3x best-selling author, keynote speaker, and futurist. His latest book is The Employee Experience Advantage: How to Win the War for Talent by Giving Employees the Workspaces They Want, the Tools They Need and a Culture They Can Celebrate (Wiley, March 2017) which is based on an analysis of over 250 global organizations. Jacob’s work has been endorsed by the CEOs of: Cisco, Whirlpool, T-Mobile, Best Buy, SAP, Nestle, KPMG, Schneider Electric and many others.

Tap My Back, a tool that provides the simplest way to provide work recognition recently had the opportunity to talk with Jacob Morgan about the concept relying beyond his latest book, employee recognition. Jacob advocates this concept should be the major focus of companies aiming to attract and retain talent. This article provides a summary of the main ideas explored on the interview. Alternatively,  you can read or listen the full interview here: Employee experience – The XXI century corporate super power.

Nowadays, we’re living in such a rapidly and demanding world that the skills gap issue is turning into a big thing. Therefore, more than ever before the need to attract and retain talent is a huge issue for corporations around the world. In the end, “every organization in the world can exist without technology but no organization in the world can exist without people”. Bearing this in mind, the concept Jacob Morgan approached in his last book, employee experience, comes in the perfect timing. Companies need to seek out to provide the best possible interactions with their workforce, that is the only way to guarantee they have people delivering their best and sticking for the long run.

On the interview Jacob explained that employee experience is sort of the next step in what regards the way company’s manage workforce. It appears as an answer to the fact that “employee engagement has always acted as kind of an adrenaline shot inside of our organizations” –  Jacob Morgan.

He goes through a few best practices that major companies with the likes of Facebook, Google or Microsoft are adopting to improve their staff experience, highlighting three major aspects culture, technology and physical space. Jacob also confessed to Tap My Back that this concept of employee experience is something that the whole company should be aware and responsible for, even though he sees mainly HR related roles pushing it into company’s’ culture.

In the end of the interview, Jacob Morgan was questioned about the best advice he would provide to SMB companies looking to start from scratch implementing and improving the employee experience they provide. You can check his tips and the full interview here: Employee experience – The XXI century corporate super power.


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