HR News Roundup - September 2017

HR News Roundup

This month, our roundup of HR news focuses on the child care gap, technology in the employee recruitment process, workspace design, and more. Dive in!

Child Care Gap

Many working parents struggle with child care...especially during the summer. "Don't get me wrong - summer is fantastic. But all season long for working parents like me and my husband, we have been dropping off and picking up day campers at work-unfriendly hours," said Jeanhee Kim, assistant managing editor at Crain's. "And then by mid-August camps end, with two more weeks to go." In the state of New York, where Kim is based, 66 percent of children have working parents...and when their child care breaks down, U.S. businesses lose nearly $4.4 billion each year due to employee absences.

Candidates Say: Too Much Tech

What role does technology play in your company's hiring process? If you depend on it heavily, beware.  A recent Entrepreneur article cited survey data that shows 82 percent of participants are frustrated with an overly automated job search experience, while 87 percent think technology has made the job search increasingly impersonal. This isn't to say technology shouldn't be part of your process at all, but candidates prefer a more human experience - "If done correctly," says Randstad U.S. CEO Linda Galipeau, "the right combination of personal interaction with the power of today's intelligent machines can create an experience that is inherently more human."

Does Your Office Need a Makeover?

What does your office environment look like? Work space might matter more to your employees than you realize. According to recent Capital One survey data cited by Bloomberg BNA, 82 percent of participants think that companies can't encourage innovation among their employees unless their office design is innovative. And flexibility is key. Office design should offer employees the opportunity to work however they prefer - either together or solo...or a combination of the two. "By knowing how employees prefer to work, companies can really invest in the work spaces that lead to the best business outcomes," Jeff Revoy, chief revenue officer at SpaceIQ, told Bloomberg BNA.

Millennials: An Employer's Dream

Remember when Millennials were dubbed as lazy, entitled, high maintenance job-hoppers? Turns out they might not be as bad as everyone thought. Recent research cited in a Business Insider article shows that they actually do care about their work. They're willing to work hard for an employer that supports them...and they're more willing than those in other generations to work during their personal time. "This caring might have something to do with millennials' hope for the future," wrote the author, "and their unwavering support for an employer they can believe in."

Food at Work

People need to eat. And tech giant Twitter is ushering in the latest wave in employee cafeterias...the robot chef. According to a recent CNBC article, the company recently invited Sally, the Chowbotics robot to prepare food for its employees. Sally dispenses fresh ingredients to create salads that match users' custom orders, and also offers set recipes to choose from. "We think about the Sally as a great thing for company cafeterias which usually shut down after lunch and do not offer dinner. This is a way to give employees who work late a healthy option," said Chowbotics CEO Deepak Sekar.  

Written by: Jeannie Krill

About the Author

Jeannie Krill at Bright Horizons

As a former Bright Horizons preschool teacher, Jeannie has seen what child care means to clients firsthand. She also offers a view from the Millennials camp, cluing us into what’s challenging today’s largest demographic, and what they really want. She holds a BA in Psychology from Valparaiso University.