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Workforce Management December 2003

December 1, 2003
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The China Puzzle
By Patrick J. Kiger
Global companies face a gargantuan task in the 21st century: managing employees worldwide. How well organizations handle talent wars, the shift to localized management and cultural issues will make--or break--them.
 

What's in store for 2004
By Samuel Greengard
The issues for the new year include a changing labor market, dwindling talent, knowledge drains and heightened demand for workforce-management metrics. "Any organization that isn't worried about the state of the workplace should be," one expert says

Get in line
By Joe Mullich
  People talk about aligning corporate, departmental and employee goals, but not many actually do it. There are companies, however, that have concrete methods to manage and measure the performance that makes lofty goals a reality.

They don't retire them. They hire them
by Joe Mullich
 
Faced with business-busting demographic shifts and skills shortages, some organizations have decided the smart move is to recruit and retain workers over 50. Experts say this new older workforce will make it necessary for companies to rethink their approach on everything from recruitment and training to benefits and providing new challenges.

High scores in the leadership game
by Maryann Hammers
 
In an industry with no precedent and few opportunities for formal training, a video-game developer trains its own leaders, and wins the Optimas Award for Vision.

2003 Data Bank Annual
Research and commentary by Fay Hansen
 
With sections on economic context, workforce management, labor markets, benefits, wages and salaries and global workforce management, this inaugural special report gathers information from dozens of the premier sources. Its 55 pages present a detailed picture of the year in workforce issues.

Between the Lines
The Grinch reading list
Tinsel, gingerbread and management books just don't mix.
  Reactions From Readers
Letters on CEO compensation and drug testing.

In This Corner
The car wreck you can stop
Employees leave, but no one is complaining, so there's no problem, right? Wrong. An ear attuned to unspoken workplace issues can save millions in lawsuits.

Legal Briefings
A defamatory reference for a former employee.


Bad driving drives up health costs
There's something about doctors, attorneys, architects and real estate agents. They have lost of accidents. Also: Problems with paternity leaves, mutual-fund scandal fallout for (401)k plan sponsors and pension-plan participation takes a tumble.
 
 
Health Benefits
Flexible spending accounts flex their muscle
The IRS rule allows employees to use pre-tax dollars for over-the-counter medications. But it won't let them write off dandruff shampoo or mouthwash. Employers hope the relaxed rules will pump up participation in the plans, which deliver tax savings to companies and employees.
 

Technology
Wi-Fi worries
Laptops have been freed from their wired connections, but they now carry a heightened risk of hacking and eavesdropping. Making employees take Wi-Fi policies seriously requires marketing--and maybe even a threat of consequences.
 

Recruiting & Staffing
Happy birthday, Myers-Briggs
Even after 60 years, demand for the venerable personality test remains strong, even though the world has changed. Believers praise it for career development and team building, but its publishers continually have to fend off companies' efforts to use it for hiring decisions.
 

Absence Management
Transitional duty pays off for everyone
Companies find that giving workers modified duty beats a long stay on workers compensation, even if it means having injured employees take on less-taxing duties working for nonprofit organizations.
 
 


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