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The Annual Office Christmas Party And The Headaches It Can Provide For HR Managers

December 7th, 2017 | Posted by ATS in HR | Leave Management | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software | Time and Attendance Canada | Time and Attendance Toronto - (Comments Off on The Annual Office Christmas Party And The Headaches It Can Provide For HR Managers)

The annual boisterous and sometimes, boozy office Christmas party means HR has to be on high alert. This staple of corporate culture year-end party is usually seen by some, as a way to unwind, get to know our co-workers a bit better, boost our social capital or win the next promotion. Some employees might even use this time of the year to request a vacation day or two so, they can relax or use it to spend time with their family.

The Annual Office Christmas Party And The Headaches It Can Provide For HR Managers

 

And, while you might be waiting with great anticipation for your company’s annual office party take heed from this list of ‘The Do’s And Don’ts Of Any Office Christmas Party’ by Lynda O’Neal in a recent Yahoo publication.

“Don’t: Enflame The Office Drama
The Etiquette School of New York, which offers training to large companies, universities and individuals, provides a long list of optimal behaviors for workplace holiday parties and devotes a large portion of text to small talk.

Do: Expand Your Network
Mingling outside of the team you interact with on a day-to-day basis could help you take away something positive from the event — a longer-lasting benefit, at least, than free drinks and hors d’oeuvres, Susan Bryant, a contributor to job search engine Monster’s career advice section, opined.

Don’t: Try To ‘Keep Up’ With The Heavy Drinkers
No one likes a hangover, but it can be easy to go overboard at office parties, especially if an open bar is involved. Stick to one drink per hour, and two in total if you can help it, manners blogger and author Maralee McKee advised in a post”.

 Bottom-line, use common sense before you attend your company’s office Christmas party, or you can always seek the advice of someone with the HR department or a trust colleague.

And remember, to relax and have fun. ‘Tis the season to be merry.

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The Ongoing Debate About Working Remotely Rears It’s Head Again

May 30th, 2017 | Posted by ATS in Cloud Computing | Productivity | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on The Ongoing Debate About Working Remotely Rears It’s Head Again)

The debate about employees working remotely won’t stop anytime soon. The most famous debate was back in 2013, when incoming CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer, informed employees that the practice of working from home would no longer be an option.

Fast forward to 2017 when it was revealed that IBM, purveyor of its employees working remotely, plans to follow in the footsteps of Yahoo’s! work from home policy. An excerpt from an article ‘So Much for IBM’s Bright Idea on Working Remotely’ reads, in part;

The Ongoing Debate About Working Remotely Rears It’s Head Again

“Tech companies are supposed to be the leaders. So it’s surprising that two of the largest, IBM and Apple, are moving backward, preparing for office life in the decades ahead to look a lot like 2005. They are likely to be wrong.

IBM is ending its liberal policy that encouraged remote work, now forcing employees back into offices to facilitate collaboration. Meanwhile, Apple is preparing to open its vast new $5 billion corporate campus in Silicon Valley.

For midlife millennials, flexible work arrangements and remote work — the kinds of work IBM is abandoning — are what workers will want. And rather than being a desirable attraction, Apple’s shiny new headquarters located in a region with million-dollar home prices may be an albatross for the company, if even well-paid workers cannot afford to live near the office”.

Only time will tell if this is a PR stunt designed to boost productivity or if it is something else entirely. Either way, romanticizing about a by-gone era will be seen for what it is, just an attempt to embrace the traditional way of going to work, that is no longer relevant in world of Cloud Computing, robotics, Internet of Things (IoT) and advance technology.

To learn more of our blogs go to our website where you can also demonstration of ATS time and attendance solution. And to reach us by phone call; 866.294.2467.

The Future Of Cloud Computing: Will It Stay Or Will It Go?

November 4th, 2015 | Posted by Apex Time Solutions in Cloud Time and Attendance | Labour Analytics | Payroll | Time and Attendance Canada | Workforce Management Solutions - (Comments Off on The Future Of Cloud Computing: Will It Stay Or Will It Go?)

Whenever a product or service offers an alternative to the “old way of doing things” there is always going to be resistance. Cloud computing is no stranger to resistance and despite that, it has continued with nonstop momentum. Some of the naysayers to cloud computing are surprised when told that; online banking, accessing Google and Yahoo mail or even sending files to icloud and Dropbox are essentially cloud computing.

An article written by Graham Winfrey complete with infograpics for Inc.com titled “The Future of Cloud Computing–and Why Your Resistance Is Futile” states in part; “By 2017, two-thirds of all business workloads will be processed in cloud data centers, according to data cited by the New Jersey Institute of Technology. The percentage of organizations using the cloud for some form of database-as-a-service (DBaaS) is also expected to double by 2017, from 23 percent to 44 percent.”

The Future Of Cloud Computing: Will It Stay Or Will It Go?

The cloud is quickly transforming the way today’s businesses operate, allowing access to real-time data and increased communications across all the different departments and locations. There is no doubt that the cloud is the platform of the future. And, as businesses grapple with the new economy, the need for a solution that will help reduce costs, improve productivity and provide a healthy return on investment-becomes even more important.

We recognize not all businesses are keen on adopting a cloud solution, in part because for fear of the unknown and/or because some businesses have the personnel and hardware infrastructure to host a database in-house. Whatever the business rationale, next time you are evaluating time and attendance applications, consider the cloud as an alternative to the old-style client-server technology.

To learn more, register for one of our weekly webinars on Friday, November 6th at 1:00pm eastern. You can also download a pre-recorded webinar or contact us at 866.294.2467.

The Future Of Cloud Computing: Will It Stay Or Will It Go?

 

Managing Workforce Challenges In An Era Of Frequent Calls For Wage Increases

February 24th, 2015 | Posted by Apex Time Solutions in Absence Management | Benefit Accruals | Cloud Time and Attendance | Overtime | Payroll - (Comments Off on Managing Workforce Challenges In An Era Of Frequent Calls For Wage Increases)

When news broke that retail behemoth, Walmart was going to raise the minimum wage of its hourly employees to $9.00 dollars; this dominated the news cycle of the day.  There were some positive and not so positive comments directed at Walmart for its decision. One of the more positive comments came via Twitter from Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo and reads in part, “So happy for Walmart associates and proud of Walmart management. A great leadership decision by Walmart CEO, Doug McMillon.”

This news came on the heels of an earlier report in which the retail giant had promised to allow employees to make their own schedules. The retail and hospitality industry is synonymous with scheduling employees to work back to back shifts and having different days off each week- due, in part, to the fact that it work in based on business demands. And in a consistently tough job market, many workers (some of whom have business degrees) are opting for lower paying jobs rather than being unemployed, in order to pay for basic needs. Walmart, it appears is following in the footsteps of companies, like IKEA,  Gap and Starbucks.

Whether your company is a small, mid-size or a large enterprise, you have to manage payroll costs. And, what better way than to automate the process with a time and attendance system, designed to handle effective workforce scheduling, absence management, human resources and analytics into a single integrated workforce management system that can help your organization be more productive.

On a footnote, we will give the final word to Lydia DePillis, reporter for the Washington Post who wrote an article on the subject, that states in part;

“Finally, Wal-Mart may have realized that making its employees a little more happy is probably a good way to tamp down the labor unrest that’s started flaring up with greater frequency in recent months.”With the increase in a minimum wage, you retain good people,” Florida store manager Claudine McKenzie told me. “The higher people get paid, the more satisfied they are.” If it can do that in an environment in which everybody else has to raise wages too, then there’s no way  Wal-Mart doesn’t come out on top.”

For more information on workforce management, employee scheduling, and time clocks, download a brochure. To have one of our account executives call you go to our website.

Managing Workforce Challenges In An Era Of Frequent Calls For Wage Increases

In 2013 when a leaked memo surfaced that Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer had directed one of the company’s HR executive to initiate a ban on the ‘work from home’ policy, the tech world went berserk. Several people within the tech industry are used to the flexible policy of working from home and so, it came as no surprise that the news was met with a heavy dose of resentment and bloggers galore took to social media and posted blogs all venting their disagreement with Yahoo’s policy. Whether your company is for or against the working from home policy this practice is not going away, in fact, it is increasing in numbers by some well established companies.

An article titled Office ‘Hoteling’: ‘Some Companies Offer Reservations, but Some Workers Have Reservations’ by Amy Whyte for workforce.com it states in part;

“Though hoteling has been around for some time — Crain’s Chicago Business reported on IBM’s switch to a desk reservation system in 1994 — the trend has recently picked up steam. “Big Four” accounting firms Deloitte and EY, formerly Ernst & Young, are among companies that have adopted office hoteling in the past year. Instead of assigned desks, companies like American Express Co. are offering employees storage lockers to hold their files and supplies. Rather than being tethered to landlines, employees at GlaxoSmithKline carry laptops equipped with Internet phones.

Even the federal government has gotten in on the trend with the U.S. General Services Administration using hoteling as part of its efforts to reduce federal office space and increase efficiency and collaboration. Charles Hardy, the GSA’s chief workplace officer, said the hoteling model has enabled it to assign 3,400 people to its headquarters, a building that previously only housed 2,200.”

A flexible work policy that includes employees working from home is not for every company. Just imagine an outside sales rep that is required to drive 2 hours or more each day, 5 days a week to sit at a desk and make cold calls to prospective customers. A company may have valid reasons for having this rep drive in to work each day. Perhaps the sales rep is below her quota and, so by closely managing this person, she might yield the desired result. With the advancement of internet phones, a cloud-based customer relationship management software (CRM) for a rep to add his notes and communicating by e-mails his superior and colleagues all day long, why would any company ask a sale rep to drive in each day to make phone calls?

In conclusion, companies who, for various reasons believe employees are better managed in an office will most likely frown upon a flexible work from home policy. In contrast, other companies who do not want to be burdened with bricks and mortar costs and see the value in such a policy will embrace this modern way of working, albeit with employees who do not need to be tethered to a desk. If you happen to work for a company that do not believe in a flexible work from home policy and you decide to approach your superior about it, make sure you have all the facts to back up the reasons why you should work at home. Change takes time.

To learn more about ATS go to our website. You can download product brochures and also register for one of our upcoming webinars.

Does Your Company Have A Flexible Work Policy?

Just About Everything Now Is Disruptive

October 21st, 2014 | Posted by Apex Time Solutions in Benefit Accruals | Business Intelligence | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on Just About Everything Now Is Disruptive)

The word “disruptive” has now surpassed being a buzzword. In fact, it is now applied to just about everything for emphasis. In its incarnation it started out as “Disruptive Innovation” is aptly described by Wikipedia in the following terms; “a disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually disrupts an existing market and value network (over a few years or decades), displacing an earlier technology. The term is used in business and technology literature to describe innovations that improve a product or service in ways that the market does not expect, typically first by designing for a different set of consumers in a new market and later by lowering prices in the existing market.”

The term “disruptive innovation” was coined by Professor, Clayton Christensen in his book The Innovator’s dilemma. The most widely used variation of this term today is “disruptive technology”  and how about disruptive entrepreneur used by Richard Branson.

In no particular order, here is list of 5 disruptive innovative and technology companies that have had a huge impact on the industries in which they serve.

  1. Yahoo, AOL and a host of other providers: gave the general public a way to find items and create an e-mail address through the cloud. Google came around and took over that space. Today, there is no other search engine on earth that comes close to its dominance.
  2. RIM/Blackberry: was a pioneer in its heyday, one of the first to offer e-mail through a mobile phone. It had a tremendous success, albeit solely relying on business customers. Apple came out with the iPhone and marketed its product to all demographics not just the business community-it has not looked back ever since.
  3. BlockBuster: consumers were tired of getting “penny pinched” for late fees. In comes Netflix with cloud-based TV shows and movies, the rest is history.
  4. Uber: at best it’s still in an infancy stage and getting a lot of pushback from the establishment. Innovators and disrupters usually do. Its business model is that of a match maker, matching a driver/car with a customer looking for a ride and taking a percentage of the fare for providing the service. Disruptive? Absolutely!
  5. Face book: Took what MySpace did and expanded it. Enough said.In describing the make up of entrepreneurs, Richard Branson makes the case they should be disruptive because “disruptive is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition and rejecting the way things are supposed to be.”

So what’s going to be the next disruptive innovation in 2015? Who knows? Either way, it’s probably going to be a combination of surprise and excitement from proponents of change and, the usual pushback, from those who always resist change.

Just About Everything Now Is Disruptive