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21 Lessons in Management and HR in September

All in one place: Here’s every important trend, news and insight we got into management and HR in September, to help you plan better for the future

Better women leaders. HR’s new role in business. And maxing your remote-work options. September 2020 was a time of getting to grips with a world almost going back to normal – almost, not quite, and with the end of the year looking up ahead. Here are the big lessons we learned in management and HR in September 2020.

21 NEW LESSONS IN MANAGEMENT AND HR FROM SEPTEMBER

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1. NEW RESEARCH: THE ROLES & PURPOSE OF HR IN THE 4TH INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION

Strategic partner. Change agent. And creative enabler. A new research project found 4 key new roles and directions for Human Resource professionals in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Here’s what they are and what you and your company can do today to excel in HR in the Fourth Revolution.

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2. SHOULD COMPANIES BUY WORK-AT-HOME EMPLOYEES A COFFEE?

Labour and tax legislation experts CRS Technologies’ Sandra Maritz reminds us that, with more people working remotely, it’s perfectly legitimate for employees to ask their company to pay for their internet, data, stationary and electricity use when working from home. Because the Basic Conditions of Employment Act requires the employer to provide those fundamental tools to the employee.

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But, potential tax benefits on tea and coffee, cleaning materials, telephones, repairs to the employee’s at-home “workspace” and even contributions to the bond or rent from SARS means employers could consider giving employees and additional allowance for these expenses. Get the insights here.

3. THE CHILDREN’S BOOK THAT “EVERY HR SHOULD READ”

“Some organizations are afraid of acknowledging their own role in care and pretend it’s not true. It’s time to embrace something a little more human in [our companies],” says former director of Microsoft’s people research division, Dr Laura Hamill, about the importance of her new children’s book “Take Care” for businesses.

“There’s fear and inertia about how we’ve been doing things [at work]. Somehow, we expect people to stop being humans when we go to work. [This book is] about human connection and how we are with people,” she explains.

The book has been making waves on the internet recently. As a children’s book that every HR should read. Find it here on Amazon.

4. NEW HR GROUP: BUILDING HAPPY & PRODUCTIVE TEAMS

If you haven’t done so already, have a look at our new LinkedIn Group on building productive teams. We’ve created a platform for managers and HR to share ideas and help and guide each other on our journeys. Whether it’s small and local or inside companies that make big international moves, you’re invited to connect with others and share your ideas and experiences via LinkedIn – join it here.

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5. THIS IS WHAT MAKES MORE RESILIENT WOMEN LEADERS

“Positive affectivity”. Mindfulness. And how they contribute to making more resilient women leaders. A new University of Pretoria study shows the link between these 2 psychological resources and empowering female leadership. Perhaps there’s something here you can learn for your company?

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Here are 4 ideas on how to roll out programmes in your company that will help create more resilient women leaders.

6. OPINION: HR NOW MATTERS MORE THAN EVER

Alexander Forbes’s Anne Cabot-Alletzhauser reiterates that Covid-19 has forced a reset in the minds of business owners where HR is concerned. In fact, HR has now become a more important aspect of any business than ever (also see the new roles of HR in the fourth revolution). But so has your team. She has some interesting insights into connecting people digitally and the value in keeping your company truly :human: – read more.

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7. FIRST CONSCIOUS CONTRACTS WORKSHOP IN SA

Ever notice how contracts get filled in, filed away and forgotten? There’s a huge global movement that’s trying to change that. To make contracting more relevant and real for both employers and employees – almost to the point where your contract is a resource you can pull out and refer to daily. A living document that helps guide everything from relationships to your company culture. That’s one of the big ideas behind conscious contracts.

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It’s a big movement gaining traction globally. And South Africa is getting its first Conscious Contracts workshop plus live stream on 1 October 2020. There’s a physical all-day workshop happening in Cape Town from 8:30, with a simultaneous live stream online. Get more info here.

8. WILL SA MOVE TO LEVEL 1?

There are quite a few reports speculating that South Africa might move to lockdown Level 1 soon. This after the SA president told the media recently that they’ve received many requests to drop the alert level, and that government was considering it, despite extending the national state of emergency into October 2020. See reports here.

9. JUST 2 DAYS FOR UIF TERS APPLICATIONS

There are only 2 days left for those who need to apply for UIF TERS relief fund for July and August. This after the UIF suspended their applications portal between 11 and 13 September. But the application deadline is 15 September, leaving only 2 days to apply: 14 and 15 September. You can apply here.

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10. ENGAGE EMPLOYEES WITH HUMAN-CENTRIC DESIGN 

Human experience experts Immersion Group’s CEO, Viresh Hargovan, said this week that when an organisation struggles to consistently attract the right talent, you’ll often find they spend most of their time on perfecting the end-user (customer)’s brand experience. But often forget to think about the employee experience.

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He asks: How are your physical, cultural and technological environments created with empathy that talks to your employee’s daily experience, circumstances and ambitions. There’s a system that helps you redesign your employee experience to become a more prefered employer, and it’s called human-centric design. Read more here.

11. WATCH: HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF REMOTE WORK

The LifeXchange Solutions team recently hosted a special webinar on best-practice when you have teams working remotely. With a look at this all-new science-based self-management course.

12. DO YOU KNOW WHY PEOPLE SHOULD WORK FOR YOU?

Because if you don’t, how should they? Kudos to PwC’s People and Organisation division Associate Director Maura Jarvis who recently remarked that employers no longer hold all the power when it comes to retaining talent. People are looking for work that has meaning and fulfilment. And the question is how are you positioning yourself as a company that provides that?

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Get the insights here.

13. IS TRACKING YOUR REMOTE-WORK EMPLOYEES A GOOD IDEA?

Or rather, to what extent is it acceptable? Well, that threshold is actually pretty high, says Nicol Myburgh, head of CRS Technologies’ HCM Business Unit. “It’s been a stark and dramatic change in work environment and responsibility. People are working from kitchen counters, home studies and lounge suites. They’re waking up and heading into the virtual office in pyjamas.”

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And some companies have been pretty trusting, while others have adopted fairly draconian tracking tools and systems to keep tabs on their employees. And Myburgh says most of this is perfectly legal, with the only exception being tracking people through video and webcams – everything else basically goes. That said, Myburgh reminds us that your employees need trust, support and engagement more than anything else. And it’s worthwhile starting with these, before considering overly strict tracking. See her insights here.

14. TERS APPLICATIONS EXTENDED INTO OCTOBER

Phew, TERS UIF is such a rollercoaster. This as Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi announced that TERS is to be extended until the end of the Covid-19 national state of disaster. A welcome announcement, since there are so many new and ongoing cases of employees who simply aren’t/weren’t able to work – see report here.

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And it works well in theory. TERS applications for March-July only closed on 15 September 2020, with new applications for those who can’t/couldn’t work during August and September extended to 30 October 2020. (See how to apply in our post on Covid for HR). But it’s worth noting that the applications were suspended until this week, having seemingly resumed on Monday (21 Sept). The moral? Quick, go apply before it’s too late. 

Plus: Here’s how to get some help with your TERS UIF payments.

MANAGEMENT & HR SOFTWARE

15. BEYOND PAYROLL: APS SINGLE-SYSTEM HR

Another of the most recommended cloud-based HR solutions of 2020, APS started out doing just payroll (which they still do pretty well), but expanded to a single-system tool for admin, attendance, hiring and onboarding too.

Created with mid-sized businesses in mind, APS has been recommended by users on more platforms this year than most. Check out their website.

16. MEET GUSTO FOR HR

One of the most recommended new HR software solutions by both software advisors and companies actually using it (some 100 000 of them worldwide!) Gusto pitches itself as an all-in-one HR software solution that does everything from payroll and benefits to time and onboarding. See their website.

But what makes it really unique is that Gusto gives you instant access to HR experts, if you need any specific advice or guidance. Plus, they have a feature called Gusto Cashout, which gives employees access to some of their wages in-between paydays – something that can really help curb unsafe and crippling lending trends, which are a huge concern at the moment among the South African workforce. Get a full Gusto demo online.

17. HR CLOUD FOR BIGGER ORGANISATIONS

One of the most recommended HR software solutions of 2020, HR Cloud is built for almost any industry and business size. Travel, retail, medical – apparently it delivers all round. The employee onboarding system gets a lot of praise (see video), but it features employee experience and all the HRMS you’ll need, with lots of useful integratable apps – see their website.

18. BEST OF HR MEETS IT WITH RIPPLING

Here’s an interesting proposition: Why not combine your HR software with an IT tool? That’s exactly what the guys at Rippling have done – and their software is now one of the most recommended for 2020. Check out their website.

With a range of awards under its belt, including a Forbes business accolade, Rippling offers you highly-rated HR services, from managing benefits to payroll, recruitment and talent development, with the option of adding systems that help you manage your devices, apps and networks too.

MANAGEMENT & HR COURSES

19. LEADERSHIP IN A DISRUPTED WORLD

4-DAY ONLINE SHORT COURSE, UP
The University of Pretoria presents a unique online short course from 22 September that looks at what it takes to lead a company through massive disruptions (presumably like Covid-19). As we’ve all experienced disruption, this course looks at what disruption means, what future leaders need to know now and how to thrive on disruption. It’s presented by UP’s Enterprises division, and you can download the brochure or get more info here.

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Next course: 22 September 2020

Price: R11 500

20. BECOME AN HR DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION EXPERT

8-HOUR, ONLINE, CERTIFICATE
A future-focused Digital HR Transformation course with the AIHR academy in the Netherlands open for enrollments this week. It’s a self-paced course, with an average completion time of 8 hours, but you have 12 months’ time to complete it in. And it’s all about equipping you with the skills for bringing in new tech to transform HR. Get more info here.

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Next enrolment: 15 September 2020
Cost: $397

21. FREE COURSE ON ONLINE RECRUITMENT & ONBOARDING

3-WEEKS, ONLINE, SHORT COURSE

Looking for some insights into attracting talent, assess and onboard 100% remotely? There’s a limited-time free short course on exactly that via FutureLearn, a digital educational platform that’s run and managed by a group of normal universities in the UK. And you can access it from anywhere and for free today. See the details.

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Expect to put in about 2 hours of weekly study. And look out for upgrade options that let you extend your course or even make it part of a degree.

Next enrolment: September 2020 (current, but limited time only)
Cost: Free


ABOUT OUR #HRNews PROJECT

Every 7 days, we filter and collect the most vital news and insights in our posts on what’s new in HR This Week. And then, to promote real long-term thinking and growth, we collect those weekly insights into a monthly collective like this one. We welcome your ideas on topics to include here – email solutions@lifexchange.co.za.

And follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn and keep up with the latest in HR News. And discover LifeXchange Solutions, a change management company.


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