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A recent survey by Gartner of over 500 HR leaders across several countries, and all major industries revealed that “building critical skills and competencies tops the list, but many HR leaders will also prioritize change management, leadership, and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives”.

As the end of 2021 draws to a close, now is the time for organizations and HR professionals to start preparing for the year ahead and align their internal goals with larger HR trends that are emerging. Here are 5 things that will become priorities for People & Culture leaders in 2022:

1.Embrace and Deliver Experience Remotely: While a majority of the workforce have been inoculated and some have returned to the office, many companies are viewing hybrid and virtual work as a long-term strategy.  And, this means, when it comes to investing in technology, the employee experience should be included in the broader picture.

HR leaders will have to adjust to working with a remote workforce and so, screening, interviewing, and onboarding new employees will be done remotely but, if it’s done properly, it should not be a challenge.

2.Cloud-Based OnDemand Applications are on the Rise: All encompassing, Human Capital Management (HCM) applications are shifting the dynamics in the workplace. In particular, employee management apps that allows a company to; automate time tracking, enhance employee on-boarding, and enhance payroll processing in real-time, to make informed business decisions and improve productivity.

3.Make an Effort to Understand the Current and New Generation of Workers
Millennials and Generation Z view work differently from the generation before them. HR professionals, will need to start adjusting to the new world of work. Millennials have been entering the workforce for several years and, at the same time Generation Z are also graduating from high school or university and entering the workforce.

This cohort of workers expect HR departments to adjust their policies to match flexibility and the collaboration they crave. And, when a company has a workforce that comprises of both young and older workers, HR has to walk a tight-rope and carefully manage employee needs without alienating either side.

4.Incorporate Wellness into the Fabric of your Organization
The coronavirus pandemic has created a fundamental shift in how work places are conceived. Health and wellness have moved from a ‘nice to have’ to a ‘must have’. Don’t be surprised if candidates inquire about your company’s approach to health and wellness during the interview stage. The pandemic has shone a light on the importance of health and wellness.

5.Create and Maintain a Positive Work Culture
A company that’s enamoured with profits over people will likely have a lot of staff turnover. A positive and healthy working environment will generate happy and hardworking employees.

A positive work environment allows employees to feel comfortable sharing and exchanging ideas-all of which, can lead to a boost in productivity and increased profits. When employees feel empowered and included in company’s goals, this can foster team building.  

Bottomline: keep the lines of communication open with employees at all times, whether they are working remotely or onsite. Simply asking them how they’re coping with work and other challenges will mean a lot. As an HR leader, you can do daily virtual meetings, send weekly email updates to connect with the team. And, you notice one of your employees are not as engaged, or a quick phone call to do a one and one chat the individual could go a long way to helping them feel part of the team.

About ATS

ATS offers a broad portfolio of time and attendance solutions that streamlines the collection, calculation, and reporting of employee hours for workforce management and eliminates the manual tasks of payroll preparation, increasing efficiency and reducing errors in corporate payroll departments.

Thousands of organizations across North, Central and South America and Europe- including more than half of the Fortune 500 – use ATS TimeWork OnDemand, Workforce Planning, Employee Scheduling HR and payroll solutions to manage their workforce. ATS cloud services offer rapid deployment, support services, software updates, and enhancements; and consulting and training services.

The coronavirus pandemic has brought remote work into focus, while forcing many companies to accelerate their digital transformation plans. And, once the worse is behind us, HR will remain firmly in the driver’s seat of their organizations as the one who ignited digital the transformation efforts.

Here are 5 ways HR managers can help their companies maintain digital adoption during the COVID-19 pandemic.

1. Maintain communication with remote employees:  Employees are going to have different viewpoints on the coronavirus. Some may think the virus is not worth paying attention to, and others will take it very seriously. Regardless of beliefs, organizations must maintain clear communication with its workers.

Utilize modern technologies to your advantage. This may require a pivot of strategy, and investments in new technology to ensure that employees can work efficiently without disruption to customer satisfaction.

2. Invest in a cloud computing solution to improve efficiency:

Companies are seizing on cloud computing technology as the key enabler to complete their digital transformation, and COVID-19 pandemic has further accelerated this mandate. Cloud computing solutions is becoming a top C-suite agenda item as businesses are transitioning from a piece-meal approach to a more holistic end-to-end digital transformation with cloud at its core.

Manually compiling spreadsheets and waiting days for different teams to get reports together is a flintstones era approach to business.  Embrace access to real-time data and interactive user dashboards- thus, helping you make the right choices and engage with the appropriate partners to augment their own capabilities.

3. Change the way you hire and make easier for employees who commute: The pandemic has brought to the front what many experts have been saying for years. Companies need to be open-minded about hybrid work. For salaried and hourly employees’ location is one of the biggest — and often underestimated — drivers of effective recruiting. Many employees moved for family and Covid-related reasons in the last year and more are actively considering relocating, which implies that recruiting challenges can increase for employers whose approach to hiring have remained the same.

4. Continue to embrace innovation: Information technology, and particular, cloud computing solutions will remain central to the post-pandemic scenario, where innovations will drive the surge in use. The disruption caused by the pandemic is unprecedent.  And, while, reducing costs during these challenging times should be a priority, businesses would be wise to search for areas, where they can find enhancements within their current product suite. That is far better than trying to identify an eliminator from your offering.

5. Be prepared to adapt to change: Thenew normal’will include a hybridworkforce.  A hybrid workforce is an operational model that combines remote and on-site employees. And, depending on the organization, it could look different, however, it typically includes the onsite presence of a skeletal staff (often deemed “essential”), while others can be fully remote employees or adhere to a fixed schedule of remote and in-person workdays.

HR leaders will be expected to drive several key initiatives to foster an environment of flexibility, equity, and trust where employees are valued and their wellbeing is prioritized. To succeed in this new and ever-changing role, HR leaders will need to remain focused on managing employee experience to attract, develop, and retain top talent.

To learn more call 866.294.2467. And, to register for one of our bi-monthly webinars, go to our website.

About ATS

ATS offers a broad portfolio of time and attendance solutions that streamlines the collection, calculation, and reporting of employee hours for workforce management and eliminates the manual tasks of payroll preparation, increasing efficiency and reducing errors in corporate payroll departments.

Thousands of organizations across North, Central and South America and Europe- including more than half of the Fortune 500 – use ATS TimeWork OnDemand, Workforce Planning, Employee Scheduling HR and payroll solutions to manage their workforce. ATS cloud services offer rapid deployment, support services, software updates, and enhancements; and consulting and training services.

If you are using Windows 10 for personal or business, chances are you’ve received a pop up message from Microsoft that you should upgrade to Windows 11. Depending on what your IT department suggests or your personal preference, you may decide, it’s time to upgrade or wait a while. Our CIO has told us, that this initiative, will come from our IT department, which essentially means- they are going to wait until all the bugs are worked out before making the switch, company-wide.

If you are on the fence about whether you should upgrade to Windows 11, here is an article about the 3 things we hate and love in Windows 11, by expert, Mark Hachman and his team at PC World:

“1. We love: The Settings menu

Nearly a decade after the new Settings menu appeared in Windows 8, Microsoft has finally made a real effort in not only filling out the Settings menu with more options, but also organizing it well. Microsoft has done away with the “home” screen of the Settings menu, relying instead on a left-hand nav bar. A “breadcrumb” navigation system has been added to the top, so you can skip back and forth inside of a particular directory. Search exists, too, of course. Finally, each page of the Settings provides dense information without being overwhelming, with drop-down menus and graphics to assist you. It’s quite useful.

For years, Microsoft’s Windows Settings menu has wrestled with the legacy Control Panel. If you need to do something, where should you look? In Windows 11, you’ll find most of what you’re looking for inside the Windows 11 Settings.

2. We love: The Out of the Box experience

You may only see the “Out of the Box Experience” (OOBE) once while you’re setting up a new Windows 11 PC, but it’s a triumph. Setting up a Windows 11 PC takes just a few minutes, and Microsoft uses those to its full advantage, taking you on a virtual tour of Windows 11’s key features, including ones that you may not encounter without some poking around. It’s clean and professional—perhaps a bit too professional—but it’s a night-and-day improvement over the Windows 10 experience, which wasn’t bad to begin with.

3. We love: Widgets

I’m warming to Windows 11’s Widgets. Widgets, the ginormous panel that slides out from the left-hand side of your display, contains all sorts of useful information: local weather, your calendar, photos that you took on this day a few years ago, and so on. Yes, there’s a lot of fluff, as the overriding Microsoft Start service will feed you a lot of gossip and other extraneous news if you don’t configure your settings appropriately.

On the other hand, I’ve criticized Windows 11 for its lack of life, and Widgets (and the updated Xbox app, complete with cloud gaming for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers) is where the fun lives.

4. We hate: The new Start menu

Yes, Microsoft removed the lively Live Tiles. But the real crime is simply the poor organization of it all. In Windows 10, you can click on the Start menu and see your grouped app icons and documents next to an alphabetical list of your apps. In Windows 11, apps are first dropped into the secondary “All apps” overflow menu. From there, you can then add them to the main Start menu, a.k.a. “pinned apps.”

5. We hate: The lack of local accounts

If you already use a Microsoft account to log into your Windows PC, this won’t apply to you. (Logging in with a Microsoft account requires you to put in a personal Microsoft email address and password such as joesmith@outlook.com, uniquely identifying your PC.) But if you’re the type of person who prefers (or perhaps demands) to use a “local” or “offline” account with an anonymous login, you won’t be able to do that with Windows 10 Home. And no, the old “router trick” doesn’t work, either.

6.We hate: The lack of browser choice

Many people use the built-in Edge browser. Many more users, however, use Google Chrome, Firefox, Vivaldi, Opera, Brave, or the other niche browsers that we’ve covered in our best browser roundup. Yes, you can download Chrome and use it as you wish. But if you want to make Chrome the default browser on your PC, that one-click “set as default” option that was available in Windows 10 has vanished.

Instead, you’re presented with one of the most obtuse options screen Windows has ever presented, which asks you to set your browser choice by individual file type. No, there’s no option to “select all.” If you’d still like to switch file types, Microsoft will then ask you, yet again, if you’d like to try Edge instead. It’s clingy and extraordinarily passive-aggressive, and it absolutely tarnishes the entirety of the operating system”.

So, should you upgrade? Some experts have suggested you should upgrade, if you are a heavy multitasker, or if you simply want a better aesthetic-looking Windows. If you have an IT department or consultant, ask them. Chances are they have been testing Windows 11 and may the answer that’s best suited for your organization.

About ATS

ATS offers a broad portfolio of time and attendance solutions that streamlines the collection, calculation, and reporting of employee hours for workforce management and eliminates the manual tasks of payroll preparation, increasing efficiency and reducing errors in corporate payroll departments.

Thousands of organizations across North, Central and South America and Europe- including more than half of the Fortune 500 – use ATS TimeWork OnDemand, Workforce Planning, Employee Scheduling HR and payroll solutions to manage their workforce. ATS cloud services offer rapid deployment, support services, software updates, and enhancements; and consulting and training services.

The phrase “The Great Resignation was coined by Texas A&M University Professor Anthony C. Klotz coined back in 2020. Now this term is widely used to describe the challenges many businesses, both small and large face with the max exodus of employees. Some experts have anecdotally, opined employees chose to stay home and collect stimulus covid-19 panademic cheques. However, recent surveys, suggest the real reasons, is because many people have decided to make a major shift in their life and focus on what matters most to them during the pandemic. Some of these reasons for quitting their jobs include: family, children education, and work-life balance. In other words, most people decided to leave their old jobs and look for new jobs that align with their new identity and life goals.

In a recent blog Sophia Lee at Blue Board  lays out some of the reasons why so many employees have decided to quit their jobs.

1. Employee burnout rates are through the roof.

Employee burnout is a long-term reaction to stress that usually comes with mental, emotional, and physical side effects. While 42% of employees were already experiencing burnout before the pandemic, that number skyrocketed to 72% a few months into lockdown—largely due to increased anxiety, heavier workloads, and people taking less time off. 

But many employers still aren’t addressing employee burnout in their retention strategies. One in five workers believes their employer doesn’t care about their work-life balance. And they’ve had enough. They’re quitting in droves, looking for companies that care about their wellbeing. Others are staying put—but at a cost to organizations. The lost productivity of an actively disengaged employee is equal to 18% of their annual salary. This means a company of 10,000 employees with an average salary of $50,000 each will lose $60.3 million a year due to employee burnout.

2. Companies aren’t providing the flexibility employees need.

When COVID-19 sent so many people home, employees realized how powerful (and possible) it is to be able to decide where, how, and when they work. Which is why nine in ten employees continue to demand flexibility from their jobs.

Too many organizations have dismissed this shift, and expect people to quietly return to the office. But this will likely result in significant turnover, as 54% of employees are considering leaving their job in this new normal if they’re not afforded some form of flexibility in where and when they work. 

3. Manager training continues to fall short. 

Managers have the most influence on an employee’s job satisfaction, wellbeing, and likelihood to stay at a company. In fact, 57% of employees have left at least one company because of their boss. But being a manager isn’t intuitive. It requires an entirely different set of skills than being an individual contributor, which is why training programs are essential.

In these uncertain times, managers are playing an especially critical role in supporting their employees. Or, at least, they should be. But due to a lack of effective training, many managers aren’t giving employees what they need, causing them to burn out and look for new jobs. 

Managers themselves are frustrated by the lack of support from their employers. They’ve been asked to take on significantly more responsibility without being given additional tools, resources, or guidance. The employee retention numbers reflect the frustration: as of December 2020, the resignation rate for managers was nearly 12% higher than the previous year.

About ATS

ATS offers a broad portfolio of time and attendance solutions that streamlines the collection, calculation, and reporting of employee hours for workforce management and eliminates the manual tasks of payroll preparation, increasing efficiency and reducing errors in corporate payroll departments.

Thousands of organizations across North, Central and South America and Europe- including more than half of the Fortune 500 – use ATS TimeWork OnDemand, Workforce Planning, Employee Scheduling HR and payroll solutions to manage their workforce. ATS cloud services offer rapid deployment, support services, software updates, and enhancements; and consulting and training services.


The topic of this blog suggests this is a herculean challenge that some companies are either unwilling to tackle, or simply don’t know how to hire a workforce that represents an ever-changing society. Some experts have suggested that such deep-seated unconscious biases, in a setting, where some like to hire and work with people who look and talk like them and who, have similar backgrounds and experiences is pervasive throughout the tech world. However, even with the best of intentions, hiring biasesraises red flags for qualified potential candidates who would rather work for companies who are diverse (in both words and actions) rather, than ones who may hire them as the token employee for diversity within their ranks.

Shama Hyder’s article titled 5 Steps to Help Tech Companies Reduce Bias in AI   is a good guide for any company who is unsure of how to tackle hiring biases.

“1. Make tech education accessible: Artificial intelligence systems are biased, and the technology usually follows the viewpoints of its creators. While society has changed considerably in the last half-century, corporations still have underlying biases (whether they realize them or not). It’s essential that we take active steps to reverse our biases so that we can prevent further biases from developing in artificial intelligence, and the best way to do this is to make the tech industry more accessible to a wider range of people.

Initiatives like Girls Who Code, AI4ALL and other educational programs make it possible for children to develop an interest in technology. To reduce bias and make the tech industry more diverse, leaders must invest in the education of young people so that they can develop an interest in the field and build the skills necessary to pursue a career. Tech companies should invest in a range of students early on, knowing that investments in education yield long-term results.

2. Hire and promote with diversity in mind: Despite numerous call-outs of major industry leaders, the tech world still lacks diversity. The Harvard Business Review reported that leading companies like Google have only crawled ahead toward more diversity among staff members. Even nearly seven years after tech companies started reporting diversity efforts, most leading tech organizations are failing — with minorities only making up single-digit percentages of the overall workforce.

3. Evaluate Data Sets: Bias is already in your data sets, and you shouldn’t ignore it. To counter biases, every AI technology developer should devote time to evaluating the data sets with which the system was created. This evaluation should take place at every stage of development, from the initial design to the final proofs. 

The best way to evaluate AI for biases is to ask specific questions. The FTC provides guidelines to determine if artificial intelligence is on the right trajectory, and to clarify what is allowed (or prohibited) by law. Developers must question themselves and the technology they are creating. It is imperative that developers understand their own biases — especially the unconscious ones — and can evaluate their work for the same. Working to eliminate biases is not a linear process, as it will take multiple back-and-forth steps.

4. Regularly re-evaluate systems to detect bias: Rigorous evaluations can’t stop at data sets. Technology is growing and changing at such a rapid pace, and strategies, systems and even outcomes should be re-evaluated each step of the way. In order to reverse the biases already in artificial intelligence and prevent further biases from developing, companies must check their work over and over again. 

5. Adjust and repeat the process: Technology has never developed linearly. The same applies to artificial intelligence: Data, processes, systems and even the bots themselves must be adjusted over time. The best avenue forward is to take a preventative approach. That means that these five steps to reduce bias in AI should be adjusted and repeated multiple times on any given system”.

Bottomline: Confirmation bias is the human tendency to process information by looking for — or interpreting information consistent with our own beliefs. Today, we know that confirmation bias affects technology development and when we allow our biases to distort what we think we know, it alienates qualified candidates, who could help make our companies grow.

About ATS

ATS offers a broad portfolio of time and attendance solutions that streamlines the collection, calculation, and reporting of employee hours for workforce management and eliminates the manual tasks of payroll preparation, increasing efficiency and reducing errors in corporate payroll departments.

Thousands of organizations across North, Central and South America and Europe- including more than half of the Fortune 500 – use ATS TimeWork OnDemand, Workforce Planning, Employee Scheduling HR and payroll solutions to manage their workforce. ATS cloud services offer rapid deployment, support services, software updates, and enhancements; and consulting and training services.