Several interesting pieces of research were published this week. They included Moody’s Analytics research into third-party risk management which shows that the threat to reputations is a key driver of investment in supplier risk detection. Other research reports from ADP, Betterworks, Cleo, Cornerstone OnDemand, Deloitte, Dynatracem, iCIMS, Oracle, Sage, Salesforce, SAS and Tradeshift.
The ADP Research Institute has published “People at Work 2023: A Global Workforce View“. The annual global study identifies and explores employees’ attitudes toward the current world of work, what they expect from the workplace of the future, and points to the initiatives and best practices employers are developing to help employees flourish.
Key findings include:
- Worldwide expectations for pay raises over the next 12 months are high, but the actual salary changes over the previous 12 months paint a different picture. 10% of workers expect a salary increase of over 15% in the next 12 months; however, during the previous 12 months, just 3% of worldwide workers received such an increase.
- Worldwide, workers agreed that flexibility in hours is more important than flexibility in location. Yet still, the trend of “digital nomads,” the concept of remote working, is taking on an international perspective and appears to have staying power. 29% of workers said the flexibility of hours was most important compared to 17% who said the flexibility of location.
- While fewer people report that their work is suffering due to poor mental health than last year, the proportion remains high. 65% say stress adversely affects their work; 63% of people experience stress at least once a week, down from 68% last year. Employers continue to work on creating innovative initiatives that can support positive mental health and financial wellness.
- Despite recent uncertainty, workers remain largely satisfied with their current employment while open to creative approaches for balancing work and home time.
Nela Richardson, Chief Economist ADP, commented, “Workplace dynamics are beginning to solidify after three years of pandemic-driven disruptions, with workers remaining consistent in wanting increased pay, flexibility and a positive workplace culture; however, the interplay among these factors will challenge employers to get creative in order to meet employees’ needs. Forward thinking leaders will need to find ways to help safeguard workers’ financial health, while bolstering their professional development.
“Reimagining working arrangements helped employers navigate workplace disruptions over the past three years. Going forward, employers that focus on career progression while retaining and advancing a caring and inclusive workplace culture can better meet the needs of their workforce, both now and in the future.”
Betterworks published its State of Performance Enablement global HR research report. It shows 75% of employees prefer to stay with their employers, but a lack of internal career development and feelings of bias undermine retention, engagement, and productivity. Only 48% of employees see a path for advancement in their company, and many still see performance management processes as unfair: 37% who weighed in with an opinion give their employer’s performance management an “F” grade.
Josh Bersin, a global HR industry analyst, commented, “It’s astounding to find out that two-thirds of employees believe their performance process is a waste of time, and as a result, most of them do not trust HR. This is a loud wake-up call to redesign this process and focus our energy on development, coaching, alignment, and teamwork.”
The report has four key highlights:
- Fairness matters, yet employees see bias
- Feelings of bias damage employee sentiment and erode trust
- Most employees want to stay and bloom where they are planted, but almost half see a dead-end at their companies
- Managers are central to employee experience and retention and require more support from HR to coach for career development
Doug Dennerline, CEO of Betterworks, commented, “Employees want to receive back from their employers what they feel they’ve put in, and they place a much higher value on things like fairness, culture, trust, belonging, and equity, along with career development and pay equity. Organizations have to reimagine the employee deal to deliver on these expectations. Enabling better performance and career growth through modern performance enablement is a lever that organizations can pull that has an outsized impact on making work better and delivering better business outcomes.”
Cleo’s 2023 Global Supply Chain Executive Report highlighted that 49% of senior executives surveyed say that making proactive investments in integration technology has increased their company’s agility, which enabled them to gain $1 million or more in additional revenue in 2022. 18% said the additional revenue provided by increased agility equated to $3 million or more.
Other benefits seen from investing in integration tech that improves supply chain resilience and agility were identified:
- More business continuity (44%)
- Stronger relationships with trading partners (33%)
- Improved end-to-end visibility (32%)
- Better scalability (32%)
- Faster pivots to deal with changes in business conditions (31%)
- Increased profits (27%)
Tushar Patel, CMO at Cleo, commented, “Looking at the past few years, even before the pandemic, supply chain challenges have long been troubling to executive leaders because they are typically assumed to be caused by external factors that can be difficult to control. But combating these external challenges and disruptions – partner demands, shipping availability, supplier requirements, or manufacturing shortages – and internal challenges like resource shortages, really comes down to taking control of an organization’s integration backbone. Otherwise, the fact is, the root cause of these challenges will likely persist for years to come.”
Cornerstone OnDemand Inc announced findings from its 2023 global research study conducted by Lighthouse Research. It focused on talent mobility trends, highlighting the urgent demand for visibility and access to internal career growth opportunities.
Key EMEA findings included:
- According to learning leaders, the primary way the workforce in EMEA has visibility into growth opportunities is through manager conversations
- 51% of EMEA employees say that the best way their company can support their skill development is by giving them opportunities to pivot, stretch, and grow
- 33% of organisations in EMEA say their people have visibility into career opportunities through some form of technology
The report also looked at how interest in growth opportunities varied demographically.
Vincent Belliveau, Chief International Officer at Cornerstone, said, “For talent mobility to deliver strategic value to an organisation, it must compose of three crucial components: a supportive manager, a strong company culture and high-quality career exploratory tools. Talent mobility plays a major role in today’s business world, enabling people to reconnect with their employer and giving them opportunities to feel like they are valued and belong. And with high belonging comes high performance – a win-win.
“Based on the findings of our 2023 research study, there’s no doubt that employees are hungry for growth and development opportunities, and require increased career transparency. As technology and tools become smarter and more interconnected, the manager’s role in employee growth is changing, and AI has the power to align individual career ambitions with company objectives, delivering real impact to the bottom line.
“For organisations to remain competitive, they must be willing to lean into employee career mobility. As technology and tools become smarter and more interconnected, the manager’s role in employee growth is changing, and AI has the power to align individual career ambitions with company objectives.”
According to a Deloitte poll, 44.6% of C-suite and other executives at organizations adopting Zero Trust say complexity and compatibility issues with legacy systems and environments pose the greatest challenge to adoption. Yet, Zero Trust adoption efforts at polled executives’ organizations will be driven in the year ahead by an expected increase in cyber threats (30.1%) and the need to better manage third-party risks (25.1%).
Andrew Rafla, Deloitte Risk & Financial Advisory’s Zero Trust offering leader and a principal at Deloitte & Touche LLP, said, “Adopting Zero Trust can help organizations secure both legacy and modern applications, data, networks, and devices, which can help effectively manage an increasingly complex cyber threat landscape.
“While legacy environments can challenge Zero Trust adoption, they are also a primary driver for transformation. You cannot replace a mainframe overnight, but you can rapidly change how that environment is accessed to significantly reduce risk. It is also possible to reduce friction for end users by limiting disruption to their native experiences and enhancing IT operational efforts associated with the adoption of modernized controls.”
The poll also highlighted the priorities within Zero Trust adoption programs data:
- security enhancements (26.1%)
- identity and access management (21.5%)
The fourth edition of the “VC Human Capital Survey,” powered by Venture Forward, the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), and Deloitte, is out. It assesses diversity in venture capital firms. Key findings include the following:
- More VC firms are incorporating DEI strategies; 46% have a diversity strategy (up 2% from 2020). 44% have an inclusion strategy (up 13% from 2020)
- More VC firms are seeing DEI interest from limited partners (LPs) and focusing on DEI at portfolio companies
- Women are far from parity, although their representation is steadily trending upward. Female employees represent 26% of investment professionals in 2022, up from 23% in 2020. Racially and ethnically diverse women saw slim gains among investment partners, 1% in 2022, compared to 0.25% in 2020
- Female representation among investment professionals with senior decision-making responsibilities realized little or no gains
- Representation for Black professionals (5%, up 1% from 2020) and Hispanics (6%, up 2% from 2020)
- Younger and smaller firms have more diversity among investment partners
Heather Gates, Audit & Assurance national private growth leader and Managing Director, Deloitte & Touche LLP, said, “Top management must recognize a moral and business imperative to act on broader social responsibilities. While gains have occurred, they have been uneven and negligible in some cases, highlighting the need for strong leadership with intentionality towards making change. There is optimism for the future. The increasing diversity among junior-level positions indicates the potential for greater representation among senior positions as talent matures and rises through the ranks.”
Dynatrace published a report titled “The convergence of observability and security is critical to realizing DevSecOps potential” based on a survey of 1,300 CISOs in large organisations. The key findings included:
- 68% of CISOs say vulnerability management is more difficult because the complexity of their software supply chain and cloud ecosystem has increased
- Only 50% of CISOs are fully confident that the software delivered by development teams has been completely tested for vulnerabilities before going live in production environments
- 77% of CISOs say it’s a significant challenge to prioritize vulnerabilities because they lack information about the risk these vulnerabilities pose to their environment
- 58% of the vulnerability alerts that security scanners flag as “critical” are not important in production, wasting valuable development time chasing down false positives
- On average, each member of development and application security teams spends 28% of their time – or 11 hours each week – on vulnerability management tasks that could be automated
Bernd Greifeneder, Chief Technology Officer at Dynatrace, said, “Organizations are struggling to balance the need for faster innovation with the governance and security controls they established to keep their services and data safe.
“The growing complexity of software supply chains and the cloud-native technology stacks that provide the foundation for digital innovation make it increasingly difficult to quickly identify, assess, and prioritize response efforts when new vulnerabilities emerge. These tasks have grown beyond human ability to manage. Development, security, and IT teams are finding that the vulnerability management controls they have in place are no longer adequate in today’s dynamic digital world, which exposes their businesses to unacceptable risk.”
iCIMS has released the iCIMS Insights April Workforce Report. Despite persistent challenges in the healthcare sector, it reveals a renewed optimism in the overall market. In March, job openings rose 18% since January 2022, a possible reaction to the surge in applications at the start of 2023. Job seeker activity increased, with application levels up 41% since January 2022. Hirings are also making a slow return, up 10% since January 2022. Other findings included:
- Hiring challenges are more pronounced in nursing. Applicants per opening (APO) for nursing-specific roles remain consistently low, at approximately nine applicants per opening, almost half of the healthcare industry average
- Despite the complex, multi-layered process to hire nurses, the time to fill nursing roles is on par with the overall labour market at 41 days, down from 48 days in January 2022. This could signify the sense of urgency to fill these roles as quickly as possible
- In addition to looking for jobs on company career sites, when turning to job boards, 57% of health services job seekers use Indeed and more than a quarter (26%) use LinkedIn
Rhea Moss, Global Head of workforce and customer insights at iCIMS commented, “Healthcare workers have arguably some of the most important jobs, but these roles are also some of the hardest to fill. We’re making sure our health services customers are equipped with the latest market data and the right technology, to get candidates in the door faster.”
A new report, The Decision Dilemma, by Oracle and Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, New York Times bestselling author, found that 70% of business leaders would prefer a robot to make their decisions. Other key findings included:
- 85% of business leaders have suffered from decision distress—regretting, feeling guilty about, or questioning a decision they made in the past year
- 72% admit the sheer volume of data and their lack of trust in data has stopped them from making any decision
- 93% have changed the way they make decisions over the last three years; 97% want help from data
- 70% of people say the headache of having to collect and interpret so much data is too much for them to handle
T.K. Anand, Executive Vice President of Oracle Analytics, commented, “As businesses expand to serve new customers in new ways, the number of data inputs they need to get the full picture expands too. Business leaders that make critical decisions about how to manage their companies ignore that data at their own risk.
“The hesitancy, distrust, and lack of understanding of data shown by this study indicates that many people and organizations need to rethink their approach to data and decision-making. What people really need is to be able to connect data to insight, to decision, to action. With our span of connected cloud capabilities, ranging from foundational data management, to augmented and applied analytics to our suite of operational applications, we are uniquely positioned to meet this need.”
- 63% of Canadian donors and volunteers are concerned about their person or family’s financial health in the next 12 months, with 17% being very concerned
- 38% will stop or reduce their charitable donations in the next 12 months
- 26% will either stop volunteering, reduce their volunteer hours, or keep volunteering but support fewer charities in the next 12 months
The report highlights three areas that can make a difference for non-profits:
- 86% of respondents said they are more likely to donate to a charity if they know it is operating efficiently
- 83% think charities with up-to-date websites, digital processes and communications can make it easier for donors and volunteers to give back
- 73% of respondents believe charities taking advantage of available technologies operate more efficiently
Mark Hickman, Managing Director of Sage in Canada, commented, “Understandably, Canadian charities are facing some tailwind from unprecedented inflation and an uncertain economic outlook. However, our findings also show nonprofits have an important opportunity to rethink how they can work with individual and corporate supporters. To attract and retain supporters, nonprofits must be ready to engage them differently and efficiently.”
A Salesforce survey of 400 U.S. government employees shows that while 77% agree that keeping data safe is their priority, their actions don’t always follow best practices for cybersecurity. Only 22% of respondents say that security protocols are not strictly enforced and don’t know what to do during a breach.
William MacMillan, SVP of Security, Salesforce, said, “There should be no distinction between doing the job and doing the job securely. Employees can be the first line of defense when it comes to data security. This is even more critical as the use of data, automation, and AI grows in the government sector.”
The report highlights that 34% of workers are not concerned by security at work, and 59% assume that their devices are safe. 47% believe their personal devices are as secure as their work devices. The report highlights several concerns about workers’ security stance.
- 20% of government employees have accidentally clicked on a suspicious link at work
- 25% use the same passwords for personal and work-related log-ins
- 36% have accessed work documents or systems from their personal device
MacMillan added, “Generating awareness, building employee skills, and fostering a security-first culture are part of the solution. Organizations need to also deliver an infrastructure that protects the entire digital ecosystem. Implementing requirements like multi-factor authentication (MFA) and a Zero Trust Architecture add additional layers of security to help reduce the chances of sensitive data being compromised or accessed.”
Despite three straight years of ongoing disruption and economic ambiguity, when it comes to resiliency, 56% of UK executives admit their company is not where it should be. This is among the top findings in a global business survey report by analytics leader SAS. The Resiliency Rules Report explores the current state of UK business resiliency and the steps companies take to navigate change and seize the opportunity.
99% of executives believe resiliency is very or somewhat important, yet only 44% perceive their company as resilient. 57% admit they are not fully equipped to face disruption and struggle in addressing challenges such as data security (60%), productivity (57%), and driving digital transformation (54%).
Among the UK respondents, 62% of executives are optimistic about the future of their country’s economy, and 86% are confident about achieving resiliency within their organisation. Yet 79% admit they need guidance to implement an effective resiliency strategy.
Roderick Crawford, Senior VP SAS Northern Europe, said, “Organisations must think beyond having some resiliency. They need protection from existential threats that could potentially wipe them out overnight, and we’ve seen examples of this recently in the banking sector. We want to help executives across industries use data and analytics to build a truly sustainable resiliency strategy.
“By taking the Resiliency Index, the research and assessment tool we have just launched, organisations can identify areas of existing strength and areas where growth is possible. That insight will help them close gaps and strategically fortify the tools and systems that make them agile in the face of challenges and disruption, as well as helping ensure their long-term survival.”
Trade activity across the sector dropped 12 points below the expected range in Q1, a two-year low in the latest Tradeshift Index of Global Trade Health. Total transaction volumes across all sectors fell 5 points below the expected range, marking the fifth consecutive quarter that global trade activity has remained in contraction territory. New invoices from suppliers fell sharply in Q1 off the back of a steep decline in order volumes over the previous two quarters.
Christian Lanng, CEO at Tradeshift, commented, “Large buyers are coming out of a nasty bullwhip cycle. We’ve seen orders fall consistently over the past six months as organizations attempt to rebalance inventory levels. Order volumes picked up momentum in Q1, but in the short term, we’ll see a liquidity gap opening up that will hit supplier cash reserves. With the cost of borrowing rising, businesses are looking at ways to monetize new orders and turn them into cash faster. We’ve seen a spike in demand for services such as invoice financing.”
While the US mirrored the global findings, order volumes at the end of the quarter finished at a high. In China, transaction volumes climbed after lockdown restrictions were lifted. However, China’s manufacturing dominance is at risk, with activity in Vietnam rising 5X and Mexico rising 6X faster than the global average.
In EMEA, after a strong Q4, trade activity across the Eurozone fell again in Q1, dropping to 8 points below the expected range. Supply chains across the UK also had a more challenging start to 2023. Transaction volumes dipped to 7 points below the expected level. UK trade activity could also face a tough six months ahead, with order volume growth crashing to 10 points below the baseline in Q1.