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Tuve la oportunidad de asistir en el año 2000 a varios cursos semanales en la Universidad de IBM en La Hulpe, Bélgica. Siempre me sorprendió la rapidez con la que comenzábamos a trabajar en los business case que nos proponían. Cada equipo estaba formado por diez profesionales de seis o siete países, sin embargo todos asumíamoscomo punto de partida común los valores de IBM (dedicación al éxito de los clientes, innovación con sentido, calidad, responsabilidad, etc.). Esta fuerte cultura organizativafacilitaba enormemente trabajar con personas de distintas nacionalidades y disminuía la necesidad de supervisión.
 
Ahora que comenzamos a tener empresas españolas con presencia en decenas de países, hay que poner foco en desarrollar y potenciar la cultura organizativa, es decir, la personalidad de nuestra empresa. Hacerlo facilitará que nuestros profesionales trabajen en equipo allí donde estén, compartiendo misión y valores. Por supuesto que hay que comenzar por contratar a aquellos capaces de identificarse con nuestra cultura. Para asegurarlo comienza a ser habitual que los consultores de executive search locales se involucren en las búsquedas foráneas.
 
En la siguiente dirección disponéis del artículo “Organizational Culture and its Influence on the Effectiveness of the Company” publicado por la Social Science Research Network:
 

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En 2007, un responsable de la empresa española líder en distribución de alimentación, me explicó que su departamento de IT estaba organizado en “Rutina” y “Mejora”. Simple, claro y magistral.

 

En el artículo “Competing in a digital world”, McKinsey habla de “Factory IT” (foco en eficiencia, gestión y costes) y “Enabling IT” (foco en eficacia, transformación y crecimiento).También habla de aprender de las empresas de software nuevos modelos de negocio. Apuestan porque toda empresa acaba siendo una empresa de software.

 

De nuevo McKinsey, en el artículo “Six social-media skills”, explican como General Electric (empresa con 130 años de antigüedad y que, por tanto, no es nativa digital) desarrolla competencias de “social-media literacy” y apunta cómo estas evolucionan a ser ventaja competitiva. No basta con crear contenidos interesantes, además hay que conocer la organización informal para conseguir la distribución deseada. El objetivo no es el protagonismo, sino incentivar la colaboración al servicio de las necesidades de los clientes.

 

Ambos artículos proponen pasos a dar en el camino “digital” que nos lleva cada día un poco más del “place” al “space”, de “transactions” a “relationships” y del paradigma producto al paradigma servicio. El reto es quién debe liderar esta transformación en el nivel-C. Probablemente alguien que sepa cómo funcionan los modelos de negocio digitales; que sea un nativo digital; que conozca cómo IT soporta funciones y procesos de negocio; que domine nuevas herramientas como redes sociales, movilidad, analítica, apps, etc; que sea experto en el “as is” del negocio y sector donde opera la empresa; y un claro agente de cambio con excelentes capacidades de comunicación.

 

Acabo sugiriendo que este perfil no es algo propio de nuestros departamentos de IT. No hablamos de tecnología sino de negocio. De aquí que surja la necesidad del Chief Digital Officer.

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Within most corporate HR functions, the atmosphere is simply too politically charged to even consider raising this powerful question:“Which HR function ranks No. 1 with the highest impact on two critical business success measures — revenue growth and profit margins?” Well, the data is in, and we now definitively know that the answer is … recruiting is the most impactful HR function!

In my many years of working with corporations, I have come across only a handful of HR leaders who have taken the time to quantify the business impacts of recruiting (Google and Apple are the best). But if you shift industries and look at the sports and entertainment industries, you will find that it is well established that recruiting is the most impactful people management function.

In pro basketball for example, you could take an average individual player and attempt to develop them over time into a “LeBron James.” However, if you wanted immediate results with a low risk of failure, you would simply recruit LeBron away from his current team. But fortunately, in the corporate world there has now been a breakthrough global study conducted by the Boston Consulting Group that reveals the relative value produced by each of the different HR functions.

From the Best to the Worst

If you’re curious as to whether a particular HR function produces a high or low business impact, this section will reveal their ranking. In it, you will find a summary of the recently released BCG findings as they relate to the relative business impact of the different HR functions. In the next chart, the top 10 performing HR functions are listed, along with their numerical impact on profit growth and on profit margins. Note that the “x” (times) next to a number in the chart stands for the number of times that the results of a “highly capable” function exceeded the results produced by a “low capability” function. Obviously, the higher the number, the more important it is to have a highly capable function.

Mid-level Rankings of HR Functions

HR functions that were rated in the middle of the pack include:

  1. Providing shared services and outsourcing HR
  2. Managing diversity and inclusion
  3. Managing change and cultural transformation
  4. Actively using Web 2.0 for HR and managing associated risks
  5. Delivering critical learning programs
  6. Managing corporate social responsibility

Bottom-performing HR Functions With the Lowest Business Impacts

The lowest impact functions include:

  1. Transforming HR into a strategic partner
  2. Health and security management
  3. Managing flexibility and labor costs
  4. Restructuring the organization
  5. Managing work-life balance
  6. Managing an aging workforce (this one actually resulted in a reduction in revenue growth)

The Incredible Power of Recruiting

The recruiting function came out on top with 3.5 times the profit growth and 2.0 times the profit margin, totaling a 5.5 performance improvement. However, using those numbers alone would result in an underreporting of the impact of recruiting. That is because the fourth-most impactful item on the list is employer branding. It should not be counted separately, because branding is an integral part of recruiting. If you were to combine the two functions, you could then add the 2.4x profit growth and the 1.8x profit margin numbers from employer branding to the numbers under recruiting and as a result, recruiting would get a total overall improvement score of almost 10 times the performance of a low capability recruiting function.

The Stock Price Impacts of Great HR

In addition to revenue growth and high margins, executives also love to see the firm’s stock price increase. Fortunately, the BCG study also researched the stock price gains produced by highly capable HR departments. In order to select the firms with the very best HR departments, BCG looked at Fortune magazine’s list of “100 Best Companies To Work For.”

The list was further narrowed down to the very best firms by only selecting “repeater firms” (i.e. only the few firms that have appeared on the list at least three times during the last 10 years). They then compared the stock price growth in those repeater “best companies” and compared the stock price growth of the companies comprising the S&P 500. The results were phenomenal. The “best companies” with great HR saw their stock price rise an average of 109 percent, while the S&P 500s rose only 10 percent over the last 10 years. That means that the stock price growth of firms with great HR departments was nearly 10 times higher!

Warning — Be Careful About Investing in These Lower-performing HR Functions

You probably already know through experience that many of the highly ranked functions (i.e. retentiononboarding, leadership development, and managing talent) have high business impacts. However, you might have been surprised to learn that many functions that HR frequently “champions” like work/life balance, becoming a strategic business partner, and restructuring the organization all have relatively minor impacts compared to the top ranked functions (note: statistically, correlational studies like this one show a direction but they cannot prove cause and effect). And sadly, the lowest-ranked function of them all, managing an aging workforce, actually had a negative impact on profit growth (meaning that if you invest in it, you will actually hurt your firm). 

More About the Research

Fortunately for those in the recruiting field, the world renowned Boston Consulting Group, in conjunction with the global people management association known as WFPMA, have released their latest correlational study demonstrating the power of individual HR functions. The study (which included 4,288 respondents from 102 countries across a broad range of industries), compared the difference in revenue growth and profit margins at firms with “very high capability” individual HR functions to the business impacts of low capability HR functions. The study, “Realizing the Value of People Management From Capability to Profitability” follows a direction that I have been advocating for years. Which is to always calculate the dollar impact of each one of your talent management activities.

It is important to know that all aspects of business have become more quantitative, and as a result, you have no choice but to use “the language of business” — which is money. HR must finally realize that it must speak this language of money if it is to be respected, well-funded, and listened to. The need to quantify results in dollars is further reinforced wherever I travel around the world. I find that executives everywhere are instantly interested in any idea, function, or program that can demonstrate that it increases revenue, the stock price, profit, or profit margins.

Final Thoughts

I of course recommend that you use the data presented here to influence your executives into investing more resources into recruiting, as well as onboarding, retention, and talent management. However, many executives will not accept external data, even if it comes from someone as credible as BCG. So the next best option is to work closely in a partnership with your CFO’s office to come up with your own internal credible process for periodically calculating the dollar value of the business impacts produced by HR. Once you identify the most impactful functions, it only makes sense that you then prioritize those functions and programs, based on their impact and their ROI relative to other functions.

And one final thought. I don’t recommend that you share this article with any non-data-driven professionals who work in one of the lower-impact HR functions. HR people all too frequently hate to have their personal beliefs challenged. Many would simply rather not know.

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Why HR Still Isn’t a Strategic Partner

by J. Craig Mundy  |   9:22 AM July 5, 2012

For two decades we have been hearing that HR must become a strategic partner to the business. And the fact that we’re still hearing it suggests that in many organizations it hasn’t happened.

The need to align HR with the business has become more urgent than ever. Financial markets exert relentless pressure for growth, especially in emerging markets. Customers demand more and better service at lower cost. And cost-efficiency, resource conservation and regulatory compliance have become issues for almost every organization. Turnover among top talent is expected to increase in 2012; globalization is requiring stronger regional HR capabilities; and demographic shifts across the world are dramatically affecting availability of qualified people.

Yet, all too often, business leaders still wonder aloud why their organizations even have HR departments. For their part, many HR leaders are willing to partner with the business, but given the unique situation of each individual company, they have little in the way of concrete guidance about how to fulfill that role.

Let me suggest a way to start. Of every action you take as an HR leader, ask this simple question: does it cause friction in the business or does it create flow? Friction is anything that makes it more difficult for people in critical roles to win with the customer. Flow, on the other hand, is doing everything possible to remove barriers and promote better performance. The question applies to virtually any company in any business and it will take you farther down the road faster than the hazy, abstract injunction to become a strategic partner. Even in what appear to be routine HR responsibilities, you can inject the business perspective simply by asking whether what you are doing is going to enhance the flow of the business or impede it with friction.

Why is it so difficult to inject that business perspective? Because as HR leaders we feel ourselves to be near the pinnacle of the organization. The organization reports to us. It must meet our demands for information, documents, numbers.

In fact, that’s backwards. We are far removed from the points and people that make a difference with customers and a difference to the business. Our perspective should be that of seeing to it that the people at those points can perform as smoothly, productively, and frictionlessly as possible.

Think, for example, of your talent strategy. Do you simply manage talent, or do you provide talentsolutions that reduce friction and enhance the flow of the business? Often we pride ourselves on trying to recruit the best talent we can find and consistently and fairly spending our resources and focusing our attention equally on everyone. But does that really enhance the flow of the business?

To truly be partners to the business we must identify those critical points of the business where the strategy succeeds or fails, and provide relevant talent solutions. In other words, we must think in terms of what Brian E. Becker, Mark A. Huselid, and Richard W. Beatty call “the differentiated workforce,” in their book of the same name. That means managing talent as a portfolio of investments, some of which will pay a much higher return than others. Instead of spending an equal amount of time, attention and resources on everyone equally, you make disproportionate investments in the most critical roles and critical people — not just in terms of compensation, but in terms of development, opportunities, retention, engagement, and human capital planning. All jobs in a business unit are important, but not all are strategic and have maximum impact on the economic value of the business.

Many business units spend time each year identifying talent and competency needs, but few get real about it by developing plans around winning in their critical talent spaces. Let’s say you have, in your opinion, spent the appropriate amount of time identifying your strategic talent needs — the difference-making roles. Then ask yourself how much time you and your HR team and line leaders spend focusing on solutions for acquiring, developing, engaging and retaining the talent to fill those needs? Or do you have the “equality” mentality — devoting the same amount of attention to everyone? It’s shocking how many HR leaders say that their business has a strategic priority such as accelerating growth in emerging markets, but they and their teams spend little time in emerging markets. Does your investment of time and resources match your business strategy? If not, you are creating friction in the business that diminishes strategic impact.

More blog posts by J. Craig Mundy
J. Craig Mundy

J. CRAIG MUNDY

J. Craig Mundy is vice president of human resources and communications for the Climate Solutions sector of Ingersoll Rand. In this position, he leads the human capital and engagement strategies for the Thermo King and Trane brands, and has implemented a global talent solutions approach for the sector’s business operations around the world.

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Entrevista en la Vanguardia Digital

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En un reciente informe de McKinsey, leo:

“The competitor had made massive investments in its ability to collect, integrate, and analyze data from each store and every sales unit and had used this ability to run myriad real-world
experiments. At the same time, it had linked this information to suppliers’ databases, making it possible to adjust prices in real time, to reorder hot-selling items automatically, and to shift items from
store to store easily. By constantly testing, bundling, synthesizing, and making information instantly available across the organization—from the store floor to the CFO’s office—the rival company had become a different, far nimbler type of business.”

Los datos constituyen el impulso nervioso de una organización. Por tanto tal y como dice mi buen amigo Fernando Ferrer-Bonsoms, deben fluir como el agua por las tuberías de un edificio. Cada vez que dejamos los datos en una base de datos, frenamos la fluidez de la organización. Si conectamos nuestras tuberías con las de nuestros proveedores, respondemos antes y mejor a las necesidades de los clientes. La empresa en red es el primer paso, el segundo el mercado en red.

Big Data es el próximo reto. Vamos a saberlo todo sobre nuestros clientes y potenciales clientes, pero  solamente nos comprarán aquellos que realmente se sientan entendidos. La capacidad de analizar grandes volúmenes de datos para identificar patrones de comportamientos que nos permitan personalizar nuestra oferta es “la ventaja competitiva”.

Recientemente un empresario me comentaba que en su organización necesita incorporar profesionales expertos en Marketing y Analítica. 

 

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Adjunto web donde se puede ver con subtitulo en Castellano el mejor discurso de Steve Jobs.

http://www.expansion.com/2011/10/06/empresas/digitech/1317883526.html

Sin duda uno de los mejores discursos del Siglo XX.

 

 

 

 

 

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