Monthly Archives: March 2018

How AI Can Work for Your Company

In the face of Stephen Hawking’s untimely death, Artificial Intelligence has dominated the headlines. Some people, such as Hawking, believed that AI had a destructive potential, while proponents say that it helps provide automation for jobs.

Here are the top ways your company can explore integrating AI into daily tasks and how to effectively address employees’ concerns about this hot-button topic.

  •  Complement, Not Replace – Encourage employees to understand that AI can complement the workforce, not replace their positions.  AI technologies are relatively limited, but AI can work alongside employees to improve communication channels, helping direct calls to appropriate departments and decreasing wait times. This will help boost overall satisfaction scores. One such company is China Merchants Bank. They used AI to replace the front-line support, allowing their staff to focus on more substantial, complex problems.
  • Educate – Educate your employees about the benefits of AI. Within the next five years, AI technology will grow leaps and bounds, and it’s essential that companies and employees recognize the benefits of this strategic opportunity. Look for areas within an organization that can benefit by incorporating AI.
  • Jobs to Manage AI – In the face of adding AI for repetitive or straightforward tasks, companies will need to create a department and positions to oversee AI. AI isn’t foolproof, which is why human interaction is still essential. AI can help replace lower-level tasks in many day-to-day operations while freeing up employees to perform more complicated tasks that require monitoring.
  • Human Touch – As AI evolves and makes a place in our workforce, human resources departments should strive to keep a human touch to companies. Human Resources skills are by nature analytical, which means that an emotional component is essential to maintaining a smooth-running organization.

If your company is looking to incorporate AI technology and needs to create an AI department or hire higher-level employees to handle more analytical tasks, consider using online job applications to help sort through and catalog qualified candidates. Ninja Gig offers the convenience of online employment applications, which dramatically cuts down on paper and the time spent by Human Resources departments finding potential candidates.  Sign up now for a 30-day free trial, and start accepting job applications immediately!

Why Millennials Hate Performance Reviews

The latest surveys show that today’s modern Millennials detest annual performance reviews. These traditional types of yearly reports can be detrimental to your future workforce. Millennials are defined as those born after 1982, and they are the future of our great corporations.

Why They’re Bad

Here are the top reasons why Millennials want companies to reconsider traditional reviews.

  • Undermine Confidence – Studies show that over 60% of Millennials feel “blindsided” by annual performance reviews. Going one step further, nearly 75% say they were unaware of how their peers and managers felt about their performance. Since these types of discussions generally only focus on the negative and not the positive, almost 50% say that traditional reviews make them feel as though they can’t do anything right.
  • Anxiety and Mistrust – Infrequent performance reviews can be overwhelming, and since it takes one year of data and compiles it into a one-hour discussion, many employees do not trust the accuracy of these reviews. Nearly 25% of Millennial employees have reported calling in sick with anxiety about their upcoming reviews. Almost 60% say that their managers are not prepared to provide helpful feedback during these discussions. Lowers Morale – Because poor performance reviews can negatively affect morale, surveys show that these are the results of holding these traditional meetings.
    • Approximately 25% start looking for a new job
    • 35% of employees begin complaining to coworkers
    • 15% of employees cry or swear

So, what can your company do to institute more helpful feedback that attracts talented young Millennials?

Instead of only holding a review annually, Millennials report that more frequent performance reviews would improve their professional development and growth. Nearly 85% of Millennial employees would prefer these highlights in more frequent reviews.

  • 40% would like to see more specific feedback instead of vague performance results that don’t give them information about how to improve their current performance.
  • 32% don’t like having a one-sided review and would prefer it includes open dialogue.
  • 32% believe that annual reviews are detrimental because they replace regular, ongoing feedback.
  • 31% feel that the feedback they receive is unfair.

Try to implement more regular feedback instead of only relying on annual reviews. This will help you attract and retain more qualified, happy employees. After all, employees that enjoy their jobs are more apt to stay longer and produce better results.

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Strategies to Help Your Team Avoid Disaster

Everyone preaches about how teamwork can help companies excel, but while professional athletic teams can rely on teamwork to score a goal or a point, many companies cannot lead their employees to successful team endeavors.

So how can human resources departments help lead their company team to success?

  • Avoid Individual Tasks, Assign Collective Goals – We’ve all been in meetings where the big boss assigns a project and then looks around and expects everyone to magically work together. Instead of expecting your team to divvy up tasks, try open communication. Assign each teammate their own responsibility, while making them all accountable for the final project. This gives room for people to cooperate, but not for one person to avoid tasks and fail the group.
  • Encourage Mutual Respect – Successful teams all  have one common element – they encourage respect, recognizing members’ strengths. Instead of viewing everyone as threats, team members treat one another as though they are assets. Consider having your company implement a peer recognition program. This helps team members acknowledge individual capabilities, while simultaneously contributing to overall team success.
  • Celebrating Winning – Don’t single out one member from a team, but instead reward and recognize everyone equally. Whether it’s a company-wide shout out for recognition, a lunch, happy hour or a gift, make sure to treat everyone equally.

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Policies for Employee Resignations

A common question that some employers have is once an employee resigns and if they leave under less than ideal circumstances, can you request that current employees not socialize with them?

While you can’t ask employees not to socialize with former employees, it is a good idea to institute some policies that pertain to employee resignations.

  1. Guest Policy – A good general policy for businesses, work environments require some structure. Consider implementing a policy about guests visiting. This can include friends, family and former employees.
  2. Avoid Choosing Sides – Whether an employee leaves involuntarily or voluntarily, they can still maintain friendships within the company. Take the high road and don’t make employees choose between their jobs and the company and a former co-worker. Employees need to be treated as adults and held accountable for maintaining a professional behavior.
  3. Follow-Up – If an employee doesn’t show up or call, try reaching out. While you can interpret this as a resignation, they could have also been involved in an accident or had an emergency arise.
  4. Well Wishing – If an employee resigns, always wish them well. Even if the employee had a terrible work ethic and was not a good fit for the company, it’s still best to exercise dignity and respect in these situations.
  5. Discuss Goals – If an employee gives his two-week notice to resign, take that time to discuss current projects and transitions. You want to make sure that the transition is as smooth as possible for the company.
  6. Offboarding – Always answer questions about what happens to employee’s benefits if they are leaving. They may have questions about their medical, vacation balance and 401(k), etc.
  7. Exit Interview – Conduct an exit interview. Whether your organization conducts them before or after the employee leaves, encourage open conversation and honesty to facilitate a better, improved work environment for current and future employees.
  8. Workload Discussions – Look into how the company will absorb the workload if you don’t hire a replacement before the employee departs. Whether companies pay additional overtime to current employees, hire a freelancer or temp or look at other options, it’s important to explore these early on.
  9. Employment Attorney – Never hesitate to contact legal counsel if you have any questions about how to handle employee resignations.

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