Accelerate May 2015 - Page 38

Lit to have the kinds of HR tools available now. He would have pounced on a book like The Brave New World of eHR: Human Resources Management in the Digital Age. “Electronic human resources,” says the book, is “a new world order for managing human resources in organisations—a world where scientists and practitioners in the industrial/organizational psychology field have much to say and much to offer in order to promote the effectiveness and optimization of eHR technologies and services.” It describes a world in which people are “e-recruited,” “e-selected,” “e-compensated,” e-trained, and e-managed, and where they don’t need to— maybe could not if they wanted to—talk to a real person for support. “Welcome to the new world of eHR,” says the book. “Things will look a bit different here. No longer will you deal with an HR professional to handle your HR needs. The HR portal will take care of you. Need to change your address? How about some online training? Want to check on your latest performance review? The portal is here to help.” Too many corporations have become people-chewing machines, places where you are more likely to get an access code by which a computer gets to know you and spits out your top “themes” than you are to get a manager to take you to coffee 38 May 2015 every month and work with you individually, person to person. When people apply for a job now, they force-fit their unique selves into electronic boxes hoping not to run afoul of the secret algorithm that, because of the increased applications e-applying allows, must sift through hundreds or thousands of submissions. No wonder one HR executive who had applied anonymously through his own company’s e-selection system got rejected, or the e-selection system of another took in 25,000 applications for a standard engineering position and reported back that not one person was qualified. “Job applicants have been changed into these bits-and-bytes kind of package for a software program that screens them as they apply for a job,” reported Mitchell Hartman on the radio program Marketplace Money. “These systems are persnickety. They’re software; they’re not human-ware.” From WIDGETS by Rodd Wagner, excerpted with permission from McGraw-Hill Professional. Copyright 2015. Rodd Wagner is the New York Times bestselling author of the book “Widgets: The 12 New Rules for Managing Your Employees As If They’re Real People,” released in April 2015. He is one of the foremost authorities on employee engagement and collaboration. Wagner’s books, speeches, and research focus on how human nature affects business strategy. He currently serves as vice president of employee engagement strategy at BI Worldwide. Wagner is a confidential advisor to senior executives on the best ways to increase their personal effectiveness and their organization >(