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And though she be but little, she is fierce.

December 7, 2017

BadgeWhere’s Lauren? Today, your chief blogger is off to the 2017 Massachusetts Conference for Women at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center to learn how she can work smarter!

This will be my second time at the conference, and it’s one of my favorite events. This year’s program is packed with exceptional keynote and special guest speakers including Viola Davis, Meryl Streep, Gloria Steinem, and Adam Grant. As a young professional, the values that the event represents are close to my heart. And I am more than grateful to work for a company that supports me in my pursuit to develop both personally and professionally from leaders who have paved the way.

There are so many great sessions, I wish I could be at them all! I’ve chosen to attend two that will help me grow as a person – a motivational interview about never doubting your greatness with best-selling author and success coach Jen Sincero (you might be familiar with her books) and an inspirational talk featuring real-life stories on perseverance and bravery with top-rate professor and best-selling author Adam Grant.

The sessions I enjoy the most are ones like these that help me be the best version of myself and continue living by my favorite Shakespearean quote that you see as the title of this post. It’s my motto! While specific job-related skills are certainly important, believing in yourself and understanding how to best tackle the situations you face at home, at work, and in the world at large is half the battle. And science tells us we work better when we’re happier! Check out this infographic from happify on why emotional well-being matters in the workplace.

Have you tried the Kronos Community?

December 5, 2017

We’ve launched Workforce Dimensions, and you may be wondering where you can learn more about this exciting opportunity. Yes? Of course, you can always contact your Kronos Sales Representative, but it’s also super easy to fact-find on your own right through the Kronos Community! Here’s why:

  1. You can navigate to product information directly from the homepage.
  2. There’s a Workforce Dimensions group where you can engage in conversations with your peers and connect with insightful Kronos experts.
  3. If you’re an early adopter, the Workforce Dimensions (Alerts) group helps you stay in the know on critical solution updates and releases.
  4. The new Group Discussions and Answers tab on the Community “Topics Detail” page combines Q&A and group posts on specific topics – you can search and sort on Workforce Dimensions or other categories like Workforce Central, Workforce Ready, Data Collection, etc.

Please note that you’ll need to be logged into the Kronos Community to access all of the above.

This is only the beginning! There’ll be more to come over the next few months, including Workforce Dimensions training options and detailed documentation. Make sure to stay tuned! For now, I’ll leave you with a Time Well Spent cartoon…

Community Support Cartoon

6 Ways Kronos Helps Engage Employees in Manufacturing

November 30, 2017

The content for this blog post is courtesy of Donald Ciesla – Workforce Solution Consultant for Manufacturing. Thanks, Donald, for your expertise!

MF_workers-hardhats-2

More than 3,000 manufacturing organizations use Kronos to drive productivity and enable successful delivery of their products and services. And an even greater number of individual manufacturing employees interact with Kronos every day – in many cases, several times per day. These regular touch points put Kronos in a unique position to provide valuable insight into your most valuable asset, the people in your workforce.

employee suggestionsDid you know that engaged employees are 22% more productive than non-engaged employees? Here are six quick and simple ways your Kronos solution can boost engagement, not just in manufacturing, but across other industry landscapes as well:

End of Shift Questions: InTouch and Mobile – Prompt your employees with questions at the end of shifts to gather information on how they feel about safety, work/life balance, paychecks, fair treatment, and other topics relevant to your business. Managers can then sort and view data on specific fields like hours worked, seniority, safety concerns, etc.

Employee Suggestions – On the flip side, it’s simple for employees to make recommendations for improvements using the tools they already interact with daily, like InTouch clocks and mobile devices.

Overtime Sign Up and Voluntary Leave – These lists automatically identify which employees can work overtime and generate information on who is willing to end a shift early on a slow day. The system will then automatically alert qualifying employees of overtime or early release opportunities they can secure.

Payroll – Some companies require a 24-hour resolution time frame for employee paycheck issues, but Kronos can do it quickly by automatically noting that an issue has been logged by an employee and then tracking the response time.

Scheduling – Work-life balance and shift accuracy are easily tracked through Kronos to ensure that employees are being offered the appropriate shifts and are not being overworked.

Safety Alerts – Whether it’s mechanical or personal, employees can report safety issues through Kronos. Alerts are received by a manager or designated safety contact and addressed appropriately.

When maximized to its full potential, your Kronos solution can be a great engagement tool. And when you make the effort to understand your employees – what they prefer, what they need, and how they feel – you create a positive workplace culture that promotes productivity, optimism, and retention.

 

VR and AR: Improving Customer Success

November 28, 2017

The future of work is changing, and it’s quite fascinating. The Workforce Dimensions Solution Guide describes how advances in technology directly impact every dimension of our lives, from personal to professional. And today, I’d like to share with you an article describing how technology is changing the way many businesses and organizations operate. Virtual and Augmented Reality Can Protect The American Workforce by Will Byrne and Dale Knauss: this, my friends, is well worth the 7-minute read.

The article focuses on how automation and artificial intelligence are changing jobs and the skills people need to perform them. Many of the world’s largest employers have turned to virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) to upskill and educate their workers. Take Walmart, for example. The organization has leveraged VR at 200 of its training centers to prepare and train employees for the Black Friday rush. Similarly, UPS uses VR headsets to train drivers.

VR and AR might seem a lot alike, but they are distinctly different. VR takes up your entire field of vision while AR overlays what you can already see – like Microsoft HoloLens. Have you heard of this? ThyssenKrupp, the world’s largest elevator company, has deployed the Microsoft wearable AR headset to train their service engineers. The technology makes it possible for technicians to make calls, look up information, and view plans quickly and easily right from the service site. I particularly like the below picture from the article. I can’t tell you how many times this would have come in handy for me personally. Ask my dad…

 

Reading how AR and VR have helped engage employees through training and onboarding got me thinking about how they impact customer success as well. The more experienced employees are with the real-life scenarios they will encounter, the better prepared they will be to deliver a positive experience to customers and help them achieve their goals. Can you imagine calling Kronos or your other software/hardware providers for the kind of interactive support shown in the photo? Or – going in a different direction – have the ability to “try-on” what’s in your cart while shopping online? Life-changing – just as I expect the live-action remake of the 1960s The Jetson’s will be…to end on a fun fact!

Who’s bringing the squash?

November 23, 2017

This is the question I ask every Thanksgiving, because squash (buttercup) is by far my favorite dish on the Thanksgiving table. Who’s bringing the carrots? – if they don’t show, I can manage. Who’s making the cranberry sauce? – not a necessity, if you ask me. Who’s bringing the turkey? – somehow it just shows up.

This year, it’s my responsibility to bring the squash, and I’m very excited about my new role as an official menu contributor. What I didn’t realize, though, is how much planning and coordination goes into prepping the food for the day. As my mom and I were discussing her oven and stove schedule for this morning – I’ll be in the way if I’m boiling the squash at the same time she’s roasting the root vegetables…oh, and then there’s the gravy and the pumpkin roll – I couldn’t help but think about how much easier it would be to keep track of all this with some sort of automated solution.

Then I remembered Workforce Home. While this solution is an amazing April Fool’s joke and not actually something we offer, don’t you think it would come in handy during the holiday season?

Happy Thanksgiving!

Even More Holiday Office Party Rules

November 22, 2017

I can’t believe it’s been nearly five years since I provided Two Simple Christmas Holiday Office Party Rules. Well, a great deal has changed in five years, and while I think the two rules are personally golden for the holidays, my daily email from Wolters Kluwer provides even more advice for employers on how to avoid holiday party pitfalls and other kinds of falls… I receive the email every business day full of HR and Payroll tips to help HCM professionals stay compliant and out of trouble. The email service is a free benefit of HR and Payroll Answerforce, available for free to all registered members of the Kronos Community.

Are you Black Friday ready?

November 21, 2017

RT_Mall_jpgI’ve gone shopping for Black Friday once, maybe twice, in my life. For some shoppers, it’s an anticipated fun night/day out. For others, it’s an exhausting and sometimes even dangerous event. And for the retailer?

The Kronos commissioned “Retail Employees’ Holiday Wish List” survey, conducted Oct. 17-28, 2016 by Harris Poll, revealed that more than half of all retail employees would rather do something other than work on Black Friday – things like working seven days in a row, listening to a customer complain for an hour, and cleaning the bathroom for a month.

Needless to say, the day can be somewhat stressful for the people who make it all happen for the rest of us.

So, how do retailers and their staff prepare for such a hectic day? Well, one way is close stores and give employees the day off like REI – an interesting approach with a valuable #OptOutside message! Or, for retailers continuing business as usual, Kronos can help contain the hustle and bustle. Kronos employee scheduling solutions like Workforce Dimensions Scheduling ensure you have the right people covering every shift every day. The “Retail Employees’ Holiday Wish List” survey also revealed that letting employees choose their own schedules would make working during the holiday season a little bit better, and Workforce Dimensions makes it easier to do that. Empower your employees with self-service and mobile scheduling to keep morale high and increase engagement!

Another way to prepare for the biggest shopping day of the year is by leveraging the retail labor model, a tool used to build annual labor budget as well as weekly and period labor forecasts. But not only does it help retailers prepare, it can also help them reflect on actual labor performance – super helpful during busy times like Black Friday. Check out part-2 of the Retail Labor Model white paper series – How Traditional Methods for Gauging the Customer Experience Fall Short – to learn about the variety of ways to measure labor model output!

Happy reading and happy shopping!

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