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HR Technology Column

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Why I Feel Sorry for IBM
Feel sorry for IBM? What an absurd notion. Perhaps the first great tech company ever! Respected and doing business everywhere in the world! Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM. Fact is IBM's effort to become an enterprise-applications software vendor, especially now in HCM, has sometimes been a struggle.
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Let's Applaud the Encore of Salary.com!
HR technology is full of "Second Acts," most famously Dave Duffield starting Workday with Aneel Bhusri after losing PeopleSoft. But I don't know many encores we've had like Kent Plunkett buying back Salary.com: the company he founded in 1999, lost 11 years later and is now busily re-inventing. It's quite a yarn.
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A New Yelp for HCM Software!
Ironically, just as LinkedIn has crippled the usefulness of groups -- once the best place to get your colleagues' opinions about software you might be selecting -- a start-up called G2 Crowd is using a lot of LinkedIn's business model to become the place to go for enterprise software reviews.
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Who Are the Real Five Generations in the Workplace?
After years of focusing on millennials, HR faces new and broader challenges around technology adoption in the workplace. And the best way to meet those challenges is to stop thinking about how old employees are, but rather how digitally proficient they might be.
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My Best Experience at HR Tech!
After so many analysts, bloggers and vendor-marketing writers have already weighed in on the HR Tech Conference, here is my best (and different) experience: an extended conversation with a leading HCM provider in the Middle East and my observation that Japan's leading HCM vendor was also at the Expo. Where else does the HCM world come together but at HR Tech?
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My Favorite HCM Feature!
At its recent user conference, Workday Rising, the company delivered a terrific HCM feature, finally completed its talent-management suite and signaled a potential new direction. Not bad for one day in Vegas!
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Do System Integrators Work Just for You?
When a big company buys big HCM software, it never works out of the box. The vendor's consultants, or more often a separate system integrator, have to be engaged to implement it. But is that SI really independent and working just for you? It's complicated, and history matters.
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HireVue: From Video to Predictive Analytics
HireVue CEO and Founder Mark Newman is the most genial chief software executive I know. What makes him so happy? Having so much fun figuring out the next useful thing to do with the nearly 20 million video job interviews his software has recorded for customers since 2004. You'll be astounded at what he's been up to!
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Is This Next Generation HR Software?
On the face of it, Marcus Buckingham, with his improbable Beverly Hills office address and Hollywood good looks, is the most unlikely HR software pioneer. But as one of the country's top experts for decades in measuring employee engagement and performance and as a leader of the "strengths" movement in organizational development, he has the HR chops to create the next generation of software and a new executive team that can make it happen.
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Who Else Wants WANTED?
I first fell in love with WANTED Technologies in 2007 after a demo in a dingy, shared office in New York City. For 10 years, long before the buzzword existed, the Canadian company (now public) has provided Big Data on job demand and, more recently, on candidate supply. About 10 percent of the Fortune 500 and nearly every big Silicon Valley brand already use WANTED Analytics. It's the clearest example of what Big Data can really mean for HR.
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Workday vs. Cornerstone Evolving!
I already admitted how foolish it was to ignore Evolv for six years until Cornerstone OnDemand bought it for $42.3 million last fall. Now Cornerstone has started opening the kimono on its intentions for Evolv, which includes competing with its BFF Workday on machine intelligence, predictive analytics and 'Insights.'
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How T&A Became Sexy!
What big HCM software companies have historically called Time & Attendance or Time & Labor actually became something bigger -- Workforce Management -- a long time ago. The best-of-breed industry leaders in WFM -- Kronos, Workforce Software, Ceridian's Dayforce HCM and others -- owe a lot to pioneer Mike Campbell.
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Oracle Comes Out Swinging at HCM World
Larry Ellison showed up again for the second Oracle HCM World conference, but this time had to leave before it started. New CEO Mark Hurd more than made up for his absence. This new user conference (formerly Taleo World) battled Ultimate Software's for the attention of influencers -- plenty to hold their attention (and yours).
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A Story of Firsts
Two wildly different firsts occurred recently in HR technology. One involves the industry's first complete talent-management vendor, HRsmart, which was acquired by Deltek, a company you may not know. And the other, SAP/SuccessFactors' first Analyst Strategy Day, where it revealed that SAP's first new software version in 22 years will not include on-premise HCM.
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Flip and Brian's Next Big Act
A year ago, SilkRoad co-founders Andrew "Flip" Filipowski and Brian Platz left the company and Chicago for warmer climes to start something new -- again. Their latest company together was called Talent Place at the end of January. Whatever it's called now, their mission is to make it the next step after SaaS.
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Oracle Innovates in HR Tech
After some brief turn-of-the-calendar navel-gazing, read about a bold innovation from Oracle, namely a new category of apps called Work Life Solutions. Though adoption for these tools has been slow, they represent a rare and important experiment in applications for employees from a big systems HCM vendor.
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Where in the World is Rudy Karsan?
Founders who sell their companies rarely stay around long after being acquired. Co-founder and CEO of the former Kenexa Rudy Karsan sold his company to IBM more than two years ago. But now that the combined IBM Kenexa Talent Management Suite is out the door, he's left to continue trying to save the world.
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A Hot New Small Company HRMS
About 25 years ago, one popular choice for a small company (two to 50 employees) HR system was Abra Cadabra. There were others, of course, but Abra Cadabra triumphed by doing it more simply and now serves millions of customers. Meet San Francisco start-up Zenefits. While many HR applications may run on your smartphone, Zenefits runs like your smartphone, and really offers a consumer-tech experience in business software.
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