August 21, 2014
Success, Scandinavian style
By Andy Meisler
|The product names aren't all that's unusual at Ikea North America. Pernille Spiers-Lopez, the Danish-born president of the mushrooming home furnishings chain, is making her company a hotbed of high-yield humanism.|
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Temps at the Top
By Gretchen Weber
|While still considered a niche industry, interim-executive staffing is becoming increasingly common for companies seeking new tools to spur change and to achieve rapid results. Top-level temporary CEOs, CFOs and CIOs can cost as much as $77,000 a month, but experts say the experience and ability that companies receive for the money can save them millions in the long run. The right interim hire can sometimes make the difference in a compnay's surviving a crisis period intact.|
Les Hayman's excellent adventure
By Patrick J. Kiger
|SAP's chief office of global human resources is having a grand time reshaping the software giant's workforce strategy. On his agenda: the creation of a standardized measure of human capital that could go into a balance sheet.|
High impact for low-wage workers
By Patrick J. Kiger
|Some companies have decided their low-wage employees don't have to be disposable. They use such incentives as performance bonuses, child care or educational opportunities to increase loyalty and save on hiring and retention. A financial reward program for hourly retail cashiers and clerks at Eddie Bauer gives workers an additional 6.5 percent of their base pay if store goals are met. In 2003, 95 percent of the chain's stores achieved their monthly sales goals at least once.|
Between the Lines
A new documentary and two new books examine the soul of the modern corporation.
| Reactions From Readers |
Letters on the demise of HRMS, the value of an MBA and the sorry state of education.
In This Corner
The plus factor
A Supreme Court decision on diversity in educational settings is prompting companies to reconsider how they weigh diversity in their hiring decisions.
Kill or be killed
Hanging tough at Enron
As former CEO Kenneth Lay faces the music, a tiny band of workers keeps the Houston-based company running. Also: Recruiting nurses in Mexico. The percentage of workers who receive health-care benefits declines. Congress gets into the stock-option act.
|Recruitment & Staffing |
An inside job at CNA
The insurance giant brings recruiting in-house and saves itself $3.5 million.
United Technologies offers a model for reporting problems
Born out of defense-contract scandals in the 1980s, the company's program required only minor changes to comply with Sarbanes-Oxley.
A simulation that makes employees feel customer pain
Texas Instruments' customer-loyalty training program dramatizes for key employees how it feels to be in a disappointed customer's shoes. The chip maker sees results by market-share gains.
HR Software & Technology
Social-networking for recruiters
Recruiters are taking an interest in social-networking Web sites as a way to tap valuable passive job candidates. Purely social sites like Friendster aren't as rich in possibilities as such business-oriented sites as LinkedIn, Ryze and ZeroDegrees. For now social-networking sites are a large, unruly experiment in online recruiting.
No quick fixes for costly prescriptions
Increases of 14.4 percent in the cost of prescription-drug benefits are likely this year. A key to reining in costs lies with education for both patients and doctors on the value of generics and the pernicious effects of direct-to-consumer advertising.