Economy (HR)


I had the pleasure of meeting Kelly Dingee at Connect HR. She is a talented, passionate HR Professional. Kelly and I spoke recently about the Economy and how it is affecting human resources and the job market.  Kelly can be found on  she is a Sourcing Researcher and Trainer for AIRS Here is Kelly’s take on the economy in HR at the present…  

The Economy. Are we on the mend? Truly? Living in the DC Metro area, and having felt the impact of the recession not quite as severe as Michigan.  Belt tightening had begun as early as 2007, and atypical housing prices in 2008.   I like many are looking for positive signs here. First off, who’s hiring, and better yet, who are they hiring?  I am seeing a lot more recruiting related job openings than I was a year ago.   I am also noticing a trend towards more contract, and temp workers and it reminds me of the 90’s.  Employers were much more willing to take on temp staff knowing they could end their contracts when they needed to.  I’ve been delighted to see 401k matches are being reinstated as well as the ending of pay freezes.  I’ve appreciated employers that have made an effort to “think outside of the box” to incentivize and engage their employees.  Whether it be extra days off, more flexible work schedules, career development training, it’s all good.    I want to pay my bills on time, don’t get me wrong, but I want flex time and I like to work from home.  In addition, I like the out of box perks, and employers are investing in education. Training has become very important, especially if firms are hiring “green” recruiters.  So I see a light at the end of the tunnel.  I don’t think we will get there tomorrow, but perhaps by the end of 2011.  

Personally, I am hopeful that things are improving.  I see a move towards mean, and lean manufacturing, and working smarter, and harder.  What concerns me is that the job losses, are really taking their toll on employees who must  “pick up the slack” and now assume the jobs of 2-3 others, for no monetary incentive.  Employee retention could be another huge problem on the horizon.    I know I speak for myself and many others when I say this has been a difficult time to be out of work. One thing is for sure: We need to get Americans back to work!

I want to know your thoughts…


4 responses to “Economy (HR)

  1. One of the critical success factors is to ensure that we have the best people( highly engaged) possible. I am a proponent of using lean manufacturing principles as they force business and employees to ask questions that enhance business performance.
    We must come out of this “recession” stronger and wiser. Companies must not go down the route of attempting to make savings through clever ways when it comes to human resources, so I would advise against the “temp or contract route” Hire the people that make a difference to your business, in that sense you cannot afford not have them on your payroll.

  2. Very insightful post! I agree, I think we are on the mend, but I think the economy has changed forever, or at least for the foreseeable future. Companies are becoming lean, they are cutting out the “fat” of middle management and unproductive employees. My question is this; will they stay lean or becoming bloated again once the economy improves?

  3. Good question John, Those that do not sustain meaningful gain will get fat and will put themselves out of business. This is where advanced HR Business thinking is called for

  4. I’m not an expert or an economist but I hope we are starting to see some sign of improvement!

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