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Strategic Human Resource Management

Build a sustainable HR strategy that will guide your choices and keep them in line with the rest of the organization.

Investing in People

Investing in People: Financial Impact of Human Resource Initiatives Third Edition

John Boudreau, Wayne Cascio, & Alexis Fink

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Reinventing Jobs

Reinventing Jobs: A 4-Step Approach for Applying Automation to Work

Ravin Jesuthasan, & John Boudreau

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Black Holes and White Spaces

Black Holes and White Spaces: Reimagining the Future of Work and HR with the CHREATE Project

John Boudreau, Carolyn Lavelle Rearick & Ian Ziskin

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2020 Top 100 HRTech Influencers

June, 2020
Human Resource Executive

Herbert Heneman Jr. Career Achievement Award

August, 2018
Academy of Management

Key Findings: The Gains from Work Automation

It’s well understood that automation will revolutionize work, and that the effects of automation will not be as simple as replacing the human workers in a job. Instead, work will be “perpetually upgraded,” as automation steadily changes how the underlying tasks in a job are accomplished.

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HR as a “Prediction Machine”

A web search on “AI in HR” reveals a mind-boggling array of possibilities.

For example, AI can choose candidate sources, predict candidate performance, offer coaching and learning, and even suggest employee pay levels. Yet, a recent IBM survey suggests that only 66% of CEOs believe cognitive computing can drive significant value in HR, and only 50% of HR executives recognize that cognitive computing has the power to transform key dimensions of HR.

Are these leaders missing the point? Or, are they reserving judgment, because the reality of AI in HR will be more complex?

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Important Lessons From the Slower-Growing Gig Economy

“Retail arbitrage” is how Juston and Kristen Herbert are saving $50,000 to adopt a child. They scour big box stores such as Target for clearance deals on products like water bottles, which they then buy for $5 and sell on Amazon for $19.95. Chris Green, a former sales representative for Bosch Power Tools, penned a book that teaches people to use Fulfilment By Amazon to make money through this type of gig.

Why does this matter to HR and organization leaders? Because, undoubtedly, folks like the Herberts are working regular jobs for companies like yours and retail arbitrage is their side hustle. But, some of them, like Green, left jobs at companies like yours to do this full-time.

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Organizational Leaders Can't Avoid Conversations About Automation Forever

We live in a world of perpetually upgraded work. Each day, work becomes a little more automated, employee and worker rewards become a little more immediate and job-related learning becomes a little more virtual.

But in order for businesses to stay at the forefront of innovation and for workers to have enough time to gain the skills necessary to use new technology, organizational leaders and managers must be willing to share what they know about emerging automation tools and their potential impact on the business. That involves open discussions about new tools that come on their radar, an exchange of case studies and other means of information gathering and dispersion.

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What We Often Get Wrong About Automation

When leaders describe how advances in automation will affect job prospects for humans, predictions typically fall into one of two camps. Optimists say that machines will free human workers to do higher-value, more creative work. Pessimists predict massive unemployment, or, if they have a flair for the dramatic, a doomsday scenario in which humans’ only job is to serve our robot overlords.

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Are Unions Tomorrow’s Work Platforms?

What is the future of labor unions? That question is becoming more relevant for HR leaders, illustrated by the Supreme Court decision in AFSCME vs. Janus, and engineer unionization efforts in Silicon Valley.

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Develop Your Workforce’s Political Skill to Help Them Thrive

Rob Cross and I have suggested how organization social networks can be sources of strategic success, including encouraging newcomers to create “pull” toward themselves, rather than excessively “pushing” themselves on others.

However, Rob, and his colleagues, Reb Rebele and Adam Grant, also warn of “collaborative overload” a particular risk for well-connected or “central” networkers.

Their approachability can lead to an overwhelming burden of emails, meeting requests, etc. Research suggests that up to 20% of collaborative time can be regained by sculpting and clarifying the role, shaping the narrative of patterns and rules, and altering behaviors.

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Are Freelancers Your Best Performers? Applying Organizational Network Analysis to the Gig Economy

Whether you call it “gig,” “fluid” “liquid,” “agile,” or something else, an increasing proportion of work is done through engagements other than regular full-time employment. While estimates of the number of workers who fully support themselves with work outside of employment vary, the amount of work being done outside of employment (including contracting, freelancing, and moonlighting by regular employees) is increasing.

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