The Balanced Scorecard is a Good Tool for Optimizing Organizational Performance

Companies_using_balanced_scorecard

The Balanced Scorecard (BSC) can be a good metric to have in an organization. It is not really a new concept, as it has been in use for about a quarter of a century, when the Harvard Business Review published a paper on this topic from Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton. Initially developed by these two; the BSC was hailed for introducing the human element in conjunction with the financial aspects of the organization, calling for alignment between the two disciplines. This fusion was considered a pathbreaker at the time of its introduction.

By the mid-1990’s, its initial small flaws had been polished, with the result that from then on, the Balanced Scorecard has been adapted by many organizations around the world. Hailed as one of the most significant management ideas of the past 75 years; the Balanced Scorecard differs from other management principles and tools in a qualitative manner. As time passed, with the advent of newer technologies and more management techniques; the Balanced Scorecard evolved, too, and integrated more functions other than Finance, giving rise to variations such as the following among others:

  • Performance prism
  • Results-based management
  • Third-generation balanced scorecard

The core value a present-day Balanced Scorecard serves can be summarized in the ways in which it helps in the following:

  • Communicating what the organization is trying to accomplish
  • Aligning employees’ day-to-day work to the organizational strategy
  • Prioritizing and harmonizing the organization’s products and services and its projects
  • Quantifying and monitoring the path to strategic targets

Putting all factors into place

The Balanced Scorecard is a very powerful tool in coordinating and gelling together crucial parameters of the organization, such as mission and vision, aims and objectives, focus and strategy, goals and results, and initiatives and measures.

Given the comprehensives and the effectiveness of the approach the Balanced Scorecard tool takes; it is no surprise that according to a study by Gartner, around half of all American fortune 1000 companies and around two fifths of all European fortune 1000 are using the balanced scoresheet. Its prominence has been rising in parts of Asia and Africa.

Widespread scope for implementation

Yet, the problem is, at the global level, far too many organizations are yet to adapt the Balanced Scorecard. This means that the potential for the adaption of this tool is vast. The ways of how to do it for raising the organization’s rate of success will be explained at a highly entertaining webinar from TrainHR, a leading provider of professional trainings for the human resources industry.

At this session, the speaker is Grant Schneider, who is president and founder of Performance Development Strategies, which helps organizations achieve greater results by aligning people in the organization with the organization’s mission and strategy.

Want to explore the ways of adapting this powerful tool to boost the overall performance in your organization and derive the benefit of Grant’s experience and learning? Then, please register for this webinar by visiting TrainHR   Viewing this webinar, its entirety qualifies for a recertification credit hour that may be counted toward SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP recertification from SHRM.
Credit is awarded based on the actual educational time spent in the program. This webinar has been approved for 1 HR (General) recertification credit hours toward aPHR, PHR, PHRca, SPHR, GPHR, PHRi and SPHRi recertification through HR Certification Institute (HRCI).

All that needs to go into creating a Balanced Scorecard

At this webinar session, Grant will help participants get an understanding of how to construct a Balanced Scorecard. He will show which inputs and variables need to be factored in and how to survey the key deliverables for success, how to measure them, how to set standards, and how to assign values to each, all of which constitute the heart of a Balanced Scorecard.

Apart from these, Grant will also explain how to use the balanced scorecard as a basis for a bonus system for managers and executives. To illustrate this, he will show an actual example from the restaurant/hospitality industry for creating a Balanced Scorecard.

Building a thoroughly designed Balanced Scorecard helps an organization achieve balanced results. It will prevent improper and incomplete utilization of human capital within the organization that happens when employees focus on one task or objective at the expense of another, often equally important or impactful one. For example, extreme focus on achieving sales should not come at the expense of customer satisfaction. Many such examples and instances can be avoided using the Balanced Scorecard.

During the course of this webinar, which HR professionals such as CEO, Senior Vice President, Vice President, Executive Director, Managing Director, Regional Vice- President, Area Supervisor and Managers will find highly useful; the speaker will cover the following areas:

  • The Purpose of the Balanced Scorecard
  • Background of the Balanced Scorecard
  • Selecting the entity to use for the Scorecard
  • Reviewing and Summarizing the Measurable Things
  • Assigning Weights and Values
  • Creating the Dashboard
  • An example used by the Restaurant Hospitality Industry
  • Using the Balanced Scorecard to Bonus and Compensation.

 

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5 attributes for employee assistance program

An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a program that an organization implements to ease some of the personal problems faced by its employees. An employee assistance program is largely voluntary, in that it is not mandatory either for organizations to implement it, or for very employee to avail it.

employee assistance program - TrainHR

According to the Employee Assistance Professionals Association, here’s what to look for:

  1. 24/7 phone response. Seek out providers that have trained counselors on duty answering a toll-free phone line at all times. Avoid EAPs that require users to navigate an elaborate phone tree before reaching a counselor.
  2. Confidential services. Licensed, professional counselors should deliver assessments and face-to-face counseling sessions in safe, private and confidential offices. Make sure there are enough counselors in your area to deliver timely services in both urgent and nonurgent cases.
  3. Referral support and follow-up. The EAP should assist employees by providing referrals for long-term or specialized care based on assessed needs, recommended treatment and employees’ financial resources. The EAP should provide follow-up and ongoing support for employees.
  4. Crisis intervention. Will EAP counselors come to your facility if there’s an emergency, such as an incident of workplace violence? Good EAPs can provide counseling for traumatized employees. They can also help management coordinate emergency-response plans.
  5. Substance abuse expertise. Given their disproportionately great impact on the workplace, drug and alcohol abuse problems often represent the bulk of EAP cases.

Subjectivity is at the core of Performance Management

Although it appears simple on the surface; performance management is something that is more complex. In simple terms, it is usually understood as business outcomes that are achieved in relation to objectives. If objectives are met, they count for performance. If they don’t, the performance can be said to be poor.

Performance management is much more than numbers

But is this really as simple as that? This concept can be straightjacketed when performance management is made of disciplines like sales or marketing. Sales is generally about numbers, and so, the sales person who meets his sales target is a performer. But what about areas like healthcare or education? Consider this conundrum: should a surgeon’s performance management scale be given the highest marks for making a bedridden patient sit up, or for carrying out a surgery by which an athlete was able to run faster? Is a teacher’s performance below par if a weak student scores better marks, but still below that of the average student, or is it high if an already high scoring student betters himself?

The point here is that not all performance indicators are absolute. Where there is subjectivity involved in the performance, as seen in the second of the above examples; performance management too, becomes subjective. However, “subjectivity” is a term management experts are loath to hearing, because many of them go by the dictum of management: “what cannot be quantified cannot be managed”.

Complexity should be the criterion

The foundation of performance management should be the complexity or reality of the situation in which the candidate is performing. Factors such as the market are primary. A salesman can perform highly in a market in which the company’s product already has a presence. But will the same person be as successful if she were given a new territory and a new product? Even in the case of the doctor and teacher that we examined, the foundation has to be the situation in which they performed. Many a time, just making a patient sit up could count for a greater performance than making another patient run. Just making an abnormal child understand a concept could be a greater performance than helping an intelligent child get better marks.

Reward on a case-to-case basis

This is the sum of performance management. Although some pundits like to think of absolute values, the parameters are what really matter. This is what a sound performance management system has to factor in. Rewards have to be commensurate with the performance, which no doubt, are driven by objectives, but these objectives cannot be fixed on all occasions.

Reference:

http://www.1stexecutive.com.au/people-performance-profit/performance-management

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Reducing employee turnover at the workplace

One of the important challenges an organization faces is that of staff that want to leave the organization. Some employees are habitual job hoppers, and it is very difficult to retain them. Some people even in senior positions have this urge, and no matter how important to the organization; it is better to let them go. Retaining those that are quitting for a specific reason is where attention has to be given to, because if the HR of the organization addresses their particular need or reservation, it is possible to retain them.

Consider what it means

When faced with the matter of retaining employees; the most important question HR should consider is the value of that person to the organization. In other words, it has to assess what that person’s departure will mean to the business. If a person who is steering the business makes up his mind to quit; it assumes a lot of significance. In such situations, it is not just the HR, but the board that has to take decisions. It is in dealing with other, junior or mid-level; yet important employees nevertheless, that HR has to consider ways of retaining the employee.

Retention is not just about money

Most organizations tend to think that in order to retain a good employee, all that is needed is a pay hike. This may be true in some cases, but never across the board. Many people quit an organization for personal reasons, such as not being given the job they wanted to do. In such cases, it is important to talk to that employee and determine the cause of resignation. When the employee feels better when given a better project to work on, arrangements must be made to put that person where she wants to work.

Some people may also quit because they may not like the politics in their team. This too, requires only shifting that person from that team. In this way, it has to get down to the specifics of the decision and try to remove the root cause.

Important points

No matter for what reasons employees quit; HR should remember two important aspects. They must understand that it is very, very important to talk to the person who wants to quit. Even if the candidate is not willing to open up; some techniques have to be adapted to make sure that the candidate speaks his or her mind out.

Secondly, it also has to judge whether a candidate resigned to have a genuine grievance redressed or to be heard or to make a point, or to just blackmail. This is very important, because some employees feel they can keep bringing the organization on its knees every time they quit. Such people have to be dealt with firmly.

 Reference:

http://hrfundablog.blogspot.in/2010/08/employee-retention-getting-it-right.html

Contact Details

TrainHR
webinars@trainhr.com
http://www.trainhr.com
Phone:800-385-1627
Fax: 302-288-6884
43337 Livermore Common | Fremont| CA | USA | 94539

Workaholics – boon or bane to the organization?

A workaholic is often termed as an employer’s asset and a family’s headache. This of course, is true of those who have a family. When a person who is married, has a family and is a workaholic, there are going to be problems for the family because it hardly gets to see him, and for the workaholic too, because of the conflict the family and work ties create by pulling him in opposite directions.

Great for the employer, but…

One big advantage of having a workaholic at the workplace is that there is no better employee than one who works and works and does little else. Sounds great, but here is the catch: Such employees have to be given work all the time, every time. Work is the only reason for which they come to office, and they have few other interests in life. This can be quite a challenge for some companies. Also, some workaholics are also perfectionists. These two qualities don’t make a very good combo, because such an employee demands work from other employees, too. It is not likely for an organization to have dozens of workaholics all the time!

Handling them is important

When workaholics are not given enough work and the work they want to do, they can be quite difficult to handle, because they will not have the outlet for their ability to work. It is important for HR to devise ways by which it can keep such an employee engaged, but also isolated to the extent possible. So, it is not just enough if an organization has a workaholic; it is important to manage them.

Contact Details

TrainHR
webinars@trainhr.com
http://www.trainhr.com
Phone:800-385-1627
Fax: 302-288-6884
43337 Livermore Common | Fremont| CA | USA | 94539

 

Managing the non-performing employee

This is a bit of a conundrum for HR professionals. Motivating an employee with limited capabilities and high willingness to raise the bar is a challenge. But this is much easier than that of goading the talented employee with the attitude of “I can, but I won’t”!

This is the typical employee who knows his onions, but is simply too complacent to stretch himself into excelling. What does the HR manager do with this kind of employee?

Try different routes

The first and foremost thing to bear in mind is that the HR and management have to be convinced that the employee unwilling to stretch himself is actually an excellent resource to have, if only a little orientation is made to his attitude. If the employee is plain lazy, he has to be disciplined for it. In the case of talented employees who are holding themselves back, the only impediment is the mindset. In the case of such an employee, all that is needed is goading. Different motivational tools work for different people, and with the unwilling employee, many tricks have to be pulled out of the bag.

Give them challenges

When an employee is talented but is unwilling to go the distance, it is a sign that he is bored. This is the most common reason for which a talented employee lies low. The answer is to give such an employee a really wide array of items to work on. This will foster greater involvement and fuel challenge in him. Once that work is over, before he gets into the shell, another equally challenging assignment has to be given. All this of course, is only after the management is truly convinced about this employee’s usefulness to the organization.

Other reasons

Of course, there could be other reasons such as not getting along with a colleague or teammate.  The HR has to dig a little and find out the root cause for the employee’s attitude. If it is indeed this, then the solution is simple –shift either the employee or thatcolleague out of the team and make them work in different departments or areas of work. This is good for both of them, and more importantly, for the organization.

 Reference

http://www.empxtrack.com/blog/06/managing-non-performers/

 
Contact Details

TrainHR
webinars@trainhr.com
http://www.trainhr.com
Phone:800-385-1627
Fax: 302-288-6884
43337 Livermore Common | Fremont| CA | USA | 94539