ASQ - Team and Workplace Excellence Forum

Online Edition — June 2004

In This Issue

In the Spotlight
Finding Your Niche in ASQ’s Living Communities

AQP Connections


News Bites
In a Nutshell
The Help Desk
NFC Goes Electronic
Resources for Success
June 2004 News For A Change — Home Page

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Information of interest from other publications and organizations related to people and quality

Networking Survey Results Released
A national survey reveals that successful networking requires an attitude of service. The Nierenberg Group, in conjunction with New York University’s Management Institute, conducted the survey, which asked working professionals to share the best tactic someone used while networking with them.

Participants across the United States answered the question: “What is the best tactic someone used while networking with you?” The majority of the participants provided one of these four answers:

  • Became a resource by providing new clients, referrals, or jobs.
  • Listened, focused, and paid attention.
  • Was straightforward, genuine, and honest.
  • Followed up and showed appreciation.

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Temporary Staffing Trend Continues to Increase
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) affirms that the United States will gain 15% more jobs in the next 10 years. Trends in staffing such as temporary and direct hire, outsourcing, and Internet recruiting are changing how companies manage the process of acquiring workers from entry level to executives. Outpacing the growth of all other forms of employment is the proliferation of temporary, project-based, and contract staffing.

Temporary workers are no longer brought in solely as replacements for vacationing employees. Today, they are effectively utilized for planned projects or as consultants whenever a particular skill is needed short term. Employers can contract hourly for almost any needed skill. As human resources professionals embrace these alternative staffing approaches, their organizations become better able to source human capital and gain a competitive advantage in the ever-changing global economy.
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Third Party Can Investigate Workplace Misconduct
A little-noticed recent change in federal law may reap significant benefits for employers faced with the otherwise unpleasant task of investigating claims of workplace harassment. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003 (FACTA), which took effect March 31, 2004, provides employers significant new leeway in using third-party investigators to ferret out the truth behind harassment accusations.

It has been the de facto position of the FTC that employment of outside investigators (including law firms acting as investigators) subjected employers to the intrusive requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, including disclosure of the investigation to the target; a requirement the employer obtain the target’s consent to conduct an investigation; and disclosure of the investigation report to the target, including all sources of information, before taking any adverse action.

Under FACTA, employers need not make advance disclosure of communications made to an employer in connection with an investigation that concerns suspected misconduct relating to employment or compliance with federal, state, or local laws and regulations, or any preexisting written policies of the employer. If the employer does take adverse action against the employee based in whole or in part on the report provided, however, FACTA does require that the employer provide the employee with a summary of the report after taking that adverse action.
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Appreciate Diversity Month Announced
Diversity pioneers Karen Stinson and Myrna Marofsky announced the launch of Appreciate Diversity Month, a new national observance that celebrates all the diversity in workplaces, schools, and communities. Appreciate Diversity Month (ADM) will be recognized from August 15 through September 15 each year.

“While throughout the year there are a wide range of admirable diversity observances that acknowledge the contributions and unique traditions of certain segments of the population—African-Americans, Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans, women, gays and lesbians, and those who are disabled, among others—until now, there has been no specific time designated to celebrate the wide range of diversity that not only includes these groups, but goes beyond them and reaches out to everyone,” said Stinson. By creating an all-inclusive national observance, the pair hopes to change the mindsets of many who believe “Diversity doesn’t apply to me.”

ADM will focus on opening dialogues that foster an appreciation of the differences that separate us as well as the similarities that unite us.
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