Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Vetting the Veteran Hiring Process

While military veterans already have trouble translating their experience to the civilian job market, HR departments also overlook Department of Labor programs that identify military veterans who are seeking jobs.

Forty-eight percent of HR professionals polled said that transitioning from the hierarchy and structure of a military culture to the civilian workplace presents a challenge, according to a Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) report called “Employing Military Personnel and Recruiting Veterans - Attitudes and Practices.” Another 36 percent of respondents said that another hurdle is the amount of time it takes military vets to adapt to the civilian workplace.

The survey did show that 50 percent of organizations that hired veterans made a specific effort to hire these candidates, but raising this percentage is a necessary objective to assist in lowering veteran unemployment. Nearly 70 percent of HR professionals reported they are mostly unaware the Local Veterans’ Employment Representative (LVER) program while another 70 percent said they were unfamiliar with the DOL’s Disabled Veterans’ Outreach Program (DVOP).

“The high unemployment rate of military veterans is startling,” says SHRM President and CEO Laurence G. O’Neil. “SHRM is committed to working with federal agencies such as the Department of Labor and civilian HR professionals to create initiatives that get veterans hired.”

In fact, among the HR organizations that hired military employees, approximately 97 percent of HR professionals reported they bring a strong sense of responsibility to their work. In addition, other outstanding qualities reported included working well under pressure (96 percent); seeing a task through to completion (92 percent); strong leadership skills (91 percent); a high degree of professionalism (91 percent); and strong problem-solving skills (90 percent).

Good response on potential solutions explored to help hiring of military veterans by HR departments included instituting programs to train veterans with additional skills for the civilian workplace (39 percent); instituting programs to help veterans transition their existing skills to the civilian workplace (36 percent); and providing assistance in identifying and reaching out to qualified veterans (32 percent).

The survey sample included 429 randomly selected HR professionals from across different industries and the U.S.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Talent Glass Is Half Full

Executives believe in the possibilities of high-potential performers. Sixty-four percent of global leaders said they currently have or plan to implement high-potential talent management programs in 2010, according to the Pulse on Leaders survey from PDI Ninth House.

Respondents were leaders from 100 global organizations based in North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific.

High-potential leaders are defined as “those with the capability to take on significantly more responsibility and challenges—often in an accelerated timeframe—and to climb several levels beyond a current role.”

Focusing on exceptional talent for professional development programs can often have a significant return-on-investment. For example, one global technology organization that worked with PDI Ninth House on a program to help top employees lead important projects led to a 20 percent, or roughly $25 million increase, in revenues.

However, 26 percent of respondents reported they don’t have a high-potential program in place nor do they plan to implement one this year, and another 10 percent reported they don’t have the resources to institute a program.

PDI Ninth House recommends these programs because they focus on skills, values, and motives; they provide networking opportunities and relationship-building; and they enforce versatility, as well as providing intensive feedback, hands-on opportunities, action learning, and stretch assignments.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Getting Smart About Job Prospects

There may be a gap between the career outlook of the average American worker and his actual job qualifications as dependent on education level.

According to a survey conducted by, although three in four Americans who plan to work in 10 years report that they have the education to remain competitive, the U.S. Census Bureau would counter that fewer than 20 percent of Americans 25 years of age and older have a bachelor’s degree and fewer than 10 percent have an associate’s degree.

This means that many workers will not be able to stay competitive since 18 of the 30 fastest-growing job fields require at least an associate’s degree according to the Employment Projections Program (EPP) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The survey also found that 29 percent of Americans who do not have a college degree and do not plan on retiring before 2020 do not feel they have the education to remain competitive as compared to 20 percent who graduated from college who feel the same way.

In addition, more working women (31 percent) as compared to men (20 percent) do not think they have the education they need to be competitive in their field.

Roughly 40 percent of survey respondents possessed a college degree and real world training of some kind.

While some of these statistics may seem troubling, online education and distance learning programs do afford many adults lacking time, money, or both the opportunity to go back to school.