Ceridian's industry insider talks all things HR as he answers our questions on HR challenges, social media trends in the workforce, and how HR uses data and analytics to perform their jobs. 

Insight into HR Trends and Challenges: Q&A with Jayson Saba

Ceridian's industry insider talks all things HR as he answers our questions on HR challenges, social media trends in the workforce, and how HR uses data and analytics to perform their jobs.

About Jayson Saba

jayson-saba.jpgJayson Saba is the VP of Strategy and Industry Relations at Ceridian. Prior to Ceridian, Jayson was an analyst at Aberdeen Group’s Human Capital Management practice. As the lead analyst for Core HR, Workforce Management, and Outsourcing, Jayson published more than 100 research papers and reports about technology and best practices. Jayson is a frequent contributor to industry and trade magazines including HR Executive, PayTech, HROToday, Workforce Management, Talent Management, CIO and The Economist. Follow him on Twitter @JaysonSaba.

Q: What do you see as the biggest challenges facing HR professionals today? How can these challenges be addressed?

A. Besides the 800 pound gorilla in the room - that being all things Affordable Care Act - I see three primary challenges for HR:

  1. Keep the company’s name out of newspaper (i.e., maintain compliance)
  2. Recruit and bring good people on board
  3. Keep those good people

With the economy rebounding, one of the biggest challenges for HR is keeping good people in the company. We know that Generation X and early Generation Y employees are changing jobs very frequently. In fact, according to a survey by Future Workplace, 91 percent of Millennials expect to stay in a job for less than three years.

Retention is critical to getting that return on investment in a new employee. By keeping employees engaged and motivated, you can keep them beyond the two or three years when other companies start to want that developed and trained employee. One of the ways companies can ensure they’re keeping and developing their best people is to show them a solid career path and invest in career development.

Q: How is the rise in social media impacting HR and the workforce as a whole?

Social communities are transforming HR on several fronts including recruitment, performance management and employee development.

  • Recruitment – When we talk about social media and HR, we naturally land on recruitment services. Social media sites like LinkedIn allow companies to recruit and promote position openings, but social platforms also enable prospective employees to engage with a company and its employees more informally. In fact, companies like Zappos are turning the recruitment and referral process head over heels by foregoing job boards altogether and instead using a social platform called Zappos Insiders that allows people interested in the company to connect with current employees – it’s an outside-in process rather than an inside-out process for referrals and recruitment. 
  • Performance management – A growing number of companies are moving towards replacing formal, once-a-year appraisals with informal, more frequent performance conversations. Social technologies are helping facilitate this process. Employee recognition platforms that allow for real-time feedback enable managers and peers to recognize and improve performance as it happens. The challenge for employees, managers and HR is then corralling that feedback and tying it back into career path decisions. 
  • Employee development – Social tools also offer a great opportunity to foster increased collaboration and peer-to-peer learning. Social media encourages employees to engage in knowledge sharing and development without institutionalizing it through formal programs so learning can stay fluid and agile.

Q:What advice would you give HR leaders looking to improve the way they use data and analytics to perform their jobs?

In the current business landscape, the majority of HR departments are still largely focused on business process improvements and automation. According to recent research by Sierra-Cedar, business intelligence and metrics are tied for fourth on the list of HR priorities, which means HR is still looking for ways to improve its processes, technology and how it serves its constituents before taking the next step in analyzing how HR metrics tie into greater intelligence for the company.

HR departments must first evaluate where they are in order to reach where they ultimately want to go. Following these steps can help:

  1. Make sure your business processes are tight; adding technology to unsound processes will not help anyone
  2. Streamline workflows by automating where you see fit
  3. Capture and evaluate transactional-level data to report on how well HR is doing
  4. Use that data to understand how day-to-day transactions are impacting the business at large
  5. Become proactive and strategic with the data you have to better align HR and company goals

Understanding where your team fits in this continuum will allow you to be strategic in thinking about how you can get to that next level.

For more information:

  • Follow the Ceridian Blog to hear more from Jayson
  • View our infographic learn about HR Tech past, present and future
  • Learn about Ceridian Dayforce HCM