The HR news that has our vote for the week ending November 9, 2012:
There’s no doubt that there were many conversations held around the water cooler this week relating to the election, but something to consider is its impact on human resources. HR Executive Online took a look earlier this week at how the candidates’ positions on employment-related issues compared. Now that we know the outcome, we can expect President Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to largely stay intact, meaning HR professionals must continue to prepare for the legislation’s full implementation in 2014. Major decisions include whether to stay status quo on benefits, maintain some coverage without employer subsidies or drop coverage completely, taking the penalty and sending employees to healthcare exchanges and/or Medicaid.
Women were a major talking point in this year’s election, and the gender gap in pay was definitely an element of that conversation. According to Forbes, two professors from Wharton and McGill University set out to determine how “gender segregation”—the tendency for men and women to work in different occupations and industries, thus earning different salaries—happens. They concluded that how women view the employment landscape can lead them to apply for different jobs from their male counterparts from the outset, promoting gender segregation.
The influx of politicos back into our nation’s capital means one thing for D.C. residents: traffic. Bloomberg Business Week reports on the budding culture of carpooling with strangers, or “slugging” as it’s known in Washington D.C. Drivers anxious to travel down the carpool lanes will pick up “slugs,” or those looking for a free ride, along certain streets. The commuter community has even developed its own code for pickup and drop-off points. Drivers heading to the Pentagon will head towards the curb along Fern Street. But one code reigns supreme for slugs and their drivers during commutes: silence.
One industry that needs to be speaking up on its value is HR, according to a survey released by KPMG. In a global survey of more than 400 senior executives, only 17 percent of respondents said HR does a good job demonstrating its value to the business, and even fewer—15 percent—viewed HR as providing insightful and predictive workforce analytics, according to HR.BLR.Com. “Human resources is often relegated to a transaction-based organization lacking strategic insight and contribution,” said Claudia Saran, a KPMG principal and the U.S. leader of the firm’s People and Change business. “HR executives must determine how to adapt their organization, including both its technology and people, to connect more explicitly with their respective companies’ business strategy.”
Can’t get enough news on what’s happening in HR? Check out last week’s Water Cooler.