Recruiting & Candidate Development
I have written about the changing nature of work several times, as recently as two weeks ago (See Changing Nature of Work and the Difficulty of Government Regulation) so it is something I find interesting. So I was happy to run across Josh Bersin’s blog post The End of a Job as We Know It written on January 30, 2012. Josh talks about many of the issues that I have also talked about. But he used a phrase that I think has implications for many areas. He said the world of jobs today is “…all about expertise, not about experience.”
This is showing up in many different guises. Here in Atlanta we have unions protesting at the AT&T headquarters because the traditional landline business is declining and the company is cutting the number of those jobs, yet at same time they are hiring for their wireless business.
The reason this is occurring is that the land line workers have experience but not the needed expertise to take on new roles. Company after company is complaining they cannot fill jobs, not because they cannot find workers, but they cannot find workers who have the expertise they need to have to fill those jobs.
Bersin also believes this change impacts several areas:
First he says that companies are hiring for skill sets not experience. This requires of applicants “…that now, more than ever, it is time to focus on your own skills and abilities. Decide what you are truly good at, and focus on building this set of skills in a deeper and more meaningful way. Read everything you can. Take courses to build fundamental skills.”
Secondly, he says it requires managers and business leaders to “…think hard about your own organization. Have you created enough flexibility in the organization to empower people to develop expertise and bring it to your customers? Do you encourage continuous learning and learning from mistakes? Do you reward expertise and functional depth?”
The major thing this changing nature of work requires is for all of us, employees and employers alike, to re-evaluate what and how we do it. The change is causing us to look at the roles we play in making organizations more effective instead of looking at what jobs we hold. Thinking of expertise allows employees to fill roles beyond the boundaries of their traditional jobs.
Thinking of expertise allows employers to be more agile in responding to customer needs by allowing employees to work outside the silos of their job description.
I think one of the reasons that I find this so interesting is that I embraced this concept when I started consulting. I have a developed expertise in human resources, in particular compliance issues. I have no “job” doing this. I have different, albeit similar, roles with each of my clients. The particular needs of each client drive how I work, when I work and what I work on.
For this to work we will have to make major changes. As an article in the Washington Post published around February 19th blared in its headline Temp Jobs Become a New Normal. Perhaps we need to start viewing all jobs as temporary, though that word is too loaded with prior meaning to be effective. Perhaps we need to view it as hiring “interim expertise” rather than hiring someone to fill a slot. There will have to be changes in government regulations as well as changes in the delivery of health care.
So this change in the world of work will not be an easy one, but it is a building wave and we best be prepared for it before it becomes a tsunami that sweeps us away.
Michael D. Haberman, SPHR is Vice-President and co-founder of Omega HR Solutions, Inc., a consulting and services company offering complete human resources solutions. Mike brings over 30 years of experience in dealing with the challenges of Human Resources in the 21st century. Mike uses his broad-based experience as a consultant, practitioner, writer, speaker and instructor in the areas of employment, interviewing, employee relations, management training, outplacement, safety, and social media to help companies solve employee problems and deal with governmental compliance in a constantly changing field. He has a BA in Psychology from the University of California, Riverside; a Master's of Science in Industrial Relations from Georgia State University's Beebe Institute of Personnel and Employment Relations and is certified as a Senior Professional of Human Resources (SPHR). He has over 13 years experience in the class room teaching human resources fundamentals and certification preparation for multiple universities and organizations.
Mike is the author of the Human Resources blog entitled HR Observations, which as been recognized several times as a Top 25 in human resources related blogs. It was also been named as one of the Top 50 HR blogs to Watch in 2010 and 2011. He has been selected as one of six HR bloggers to be featured on the online version of Human Resources Executive Magazine. He has also been named in the Top 10 Digital Influencers in Human Resources. He blogs on the Toolbox for HR website and contributes to several other web-based newsletter and blog sites. He is frequently quoted in articles on HR topics.
Mike has gained a reputation as a compliance expert. He speaks on a variety of subjects to business associations, human resource associations and business based civic clubs. He has co-presented webinars on various HR related issues. He has authored several book reviews of both non-fiction and fiction and serves as a peer reviewer for SHRM.His clients include a broad spectrum of industries, including food, travel, textiles, medical, financial and construction.
Omega HR Solutions, Inc. offers human resources solutions including compliance reviews, wage and hour guidance, supervisory/managerial training, strategic guidance
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The 77 million people that make up the US small business workforce would rank as the 17th most populous country in the world, just ahead of Iran;
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