HR Quick Scoops

Insights and updates from our members, for our members

What Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Can Teach Us about Employee Onboarding

As younger generations are increasingly seeking work that not only provides a stable salary but is also meaningful and offers growth opportunities, it becomes all the more important to ensure that the employee onboarding process aligns with these needs. 

In this blog, we will share some tips on how you can provide the best experience for your new employees through the use of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.


What Is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

Maslow has made a significant contribution to psychology by proposing a motivational theory of human needs. He arranged the needs at a hierarchical level, theorizing that those lower down need to be satisfied before an individual can attend to higher needs. 


Younger Generations Want To Thrive

According to research, younger generations are concerned about ethics and inclusivity within a company, which are the higher needs in Maslow’s hierarchy under the umbrella terms of belonging, esteem, and self-actualization. This new reality makes it all the more important to ensure a successful employee onboarding process to reduce employee turnover and help new employees feel valued. 


How to Improve Your Employee Onboarding

Ensure Respectful Communication

Research shows that younger employees care deeply about meaning. They do not wish to be viewed as mere numbers in the system. They are strongly concerned about their company’s mission and their role in making this mission a reality. Furthermore, younger employees care about respect and workplace tolerance. 

To address these needs, you should start right from the hiring process. It is important that you write a transparent job description that will provide your new hire with a concrete list of their future responsibilities, as this will make it easier for them to decide whether these tasks align with their values. 

To ensure respectful communication, you should also let your candidates know about the structure of the hiring process and how long each stage is likely to take. You should also follow up with the candidates, give them your full attention during interviews, and respond to their emails.


Streamline the Process

Younger generations also care about an easy-to-use work experience, which is why you should make the onboarding process as seamless as possible. This will help your employees feel valued and respected.

Transfer all your new hire’s information from your applicant tracking system to your onboarding software to create a smooth transition, and prepare new hire paperwork, which should include such documents as an employment agreement, a non-disclosure agreement, a direct deposit form, and an employee handbook. You should also set up your new employee’s online accounts and prepare their technology.


Welcoming a New Hire

Because younger generations want personalized experiences, it is important to prepare to give a new hire a warm welcome. Consider preparing a welcome kit that would include a welcome letter, paperwork, a handbook about your company’s culture, and any branded items of your choice. 


As younger employees increasingly seek a workplace that would help them achieve their higher needs from Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, such as belonging, esteem, and self-actualization, you should improve your onboarding process to help them feel valued and integral to the company. At Employers Resource Association, our aim is to keep HR managers current, compliant, and competent while saving time and money. Contact us to learn more about our services!

Return of the Heard it on the Hotline webinar!

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, April 18, from 12 – 1 PM for the return of ERA’s Heard it on the Hotline webinar. Listen to two of our hotline team members talk about three frequently asked questions. Melissa Wymer and Rebecca Jacobs will discuss our approach and advice to these situations and also open up the forum for questions on the spot, with an option for anonymous questions.

We do need you to register for this free webinar, and you can do that here.

How to Align Employee Goals with Organizational Objectives Using OKRs

Aligning employee goals with organizational objectives is a critical component of effective management and leadership. When employees understand how their goals contribute to the overall success of the organization, they are more likely to be engaged, motivated, and committed to achieving those goals.

OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) is a framework that can help organizations align individual employee goals with organizational objectives in a structured and measurable way. By using OKRs, organizations can create a shared understanding of what needs to be accomplished and how individual contributions can help achieve those objectives.

Read more about how your organization can use OKRs to align employee goals with corporate objectives.

Define Mission and Vision

The first step in aligning employee goals with your organizational objectives is to ensure that the company’s mission and vision are clear. It will help employees understand the purpose and direction of the organization. 

For example, if the company’s mission is to provide excellent customer service, the objective could be to increase customer satisfaction ratings by a certain percentage. You can further categorize goals into specific vital results, such as increasing the number of positive customer reviews or reducing the number of customer complaints.


Define Team Objectives

Once the organizational objectives are defined, the next step is to define team objectives that align with your organizational objectives. This step is critical as it helps create a clear connection between individual goals and the larger organizational goals. Each team should identify the specific objectives that they need to achieve to contribute to the larger organizational objectives.


Define Individual Objectives

With team objectives in place, the next step is to define individual objectives that align with the team objectives. This step ensures that each employee is aware of their specific contribution to the team and the organization. Individual objectives should be aligned with team objectives and ultimately with organizational objectives. The objectives should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. The individual objectives should be communicated to the employees clearly.


Provide Regular Feedback

Feedback can help employees understand how they are progressing toward their goals and identify areas where they may need to improve. Additionally, this ensures that employees are on track to achieve their objectives. You can set up regular performance reviews or check-ins to provide regular feedback.


Benefits of Aligning Employee Goals with Organizational Objectives Using OKRs

  • Clarity of Goals: OKRs provide clarity of goals to employees, making it easier for them to understand their contribution to the team and the organization.
  • Improved Performance: Aligning employee goals with organizational objectives using OKRs can lead to improved performance, as employees are motivated to achieve their objectives and contribute to the team and the organization.
  • Increased Engagement: When employees understand how their individual goals contribute to the overall success of the organization, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to achieving those goals.
  • Better Communication: OKRs provide a common language and framework for discussing goals and progress toward those goals. This common language helps in better communication and collaboration between teams and individuals.


Many leading companies use this framework because of its simplicity. By setting OKRs, your team will have a more straightforward path to achieving the company’s goals. At Employers Resource Association Inc, we promote high-performance HR in organizations, empower HR professionals, and develop people so that communities thrive. Contact us for more information.

ChatGPT at work?

Need a recipe idea when you have chicken and fresh broccoli on hand? Check ChatGPT. As I sit here writing this, the AI is generating the 5th suggestion in a long list of what appear to be very tasty meals.

Need some language to include with your marketplace post to sell your old lawnmower? “Are you tired of spending countless hours mowing your lawn with an old, unreliable lawnmower? Look no further! We have the perfect solution for you. Introducing our used lawnmower, which is in great condition and ready to make your lawn look pristine … So why wait? Upgrade your lawn care equipment today and enjoy a beautiful well-manicured lawn in no time. Contact us now to purchase our used lawnmower and experience the difference for yourself!”

But are your employees using ChatGPT to complete their work for you? Are they inputting sensitive or confidential data into the system to generate the deliverables they need for their job functions? Or is ChatGPT becoming another blow to employees’ productivity by luring their attention away from their tasks?

Employers may want to consider having a policy in their handbook regarding the use of or reliance on this type of artificial intelligence at work. ERA will shortly unveil its HR consultant-generated policy to address this issue, but in the meantime, I wanted to see what ChatGPT would produce by way of this exact policy. Assuming the stance of an employer which wants to ban the use of ChatGPT at work, I asked ChatGPT for a sample policy. Here it is.


*NOTE, this policy was generated by ChatGPT upon request*

Dear employees,

As part of our efforts to ensure a safe and productive work environment, we would like to remind you that the use of ChatGPT, a language model trained by OpenAI, is strictly prohibited during work hours.

ChatGPT is a powerful tool that uses natural language processing to generate human-like responses to a wide range of queries. While it may be tempting to use this tool for work-related purposes, we would like to caution you against its use due to potential security and confidentiality concerns.

Additionally, we believe that the use of ChatGPT can be a significant distraction from your work duties, leading to a decrease in productivity and overall work performance.

We understand that technology has become an essential part of our daily lives, and we encourage you to use appropriate tools and resources to carry out your duties efficiently. However, we also need to ensure that we protect our organization’s interests and adhere to our policies.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this policy, please do not hesitate to contact your supervisor or the HR department.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.


[Your Company Name]

It is a pretty good start but definitely no substitute for experienced HR professionals as they consider all of the different ways in which the use of ChatGPT could impact the workplace. Here are the points which we will likely incorporate in our sample policy.

  • Regardless of where you are accessing ChatGPT (e.g., home, office, wherever), employees should not be inputting any confidential information. Your handbook should already have a solid definition of confidential information which can be incorporated here.
  • Do not use any company-provided device to access ChatGPT regardless of when or where you are using it.
  • Do not use your company-provided email to set up an account with ChatGPT.
  • Unless otherwise directed by your supervisor, you should not be using ChatGPT in connection with the performance of your work duties.

Not all employers are looking to ban the use. Some are embracing it and figuring out what the parameters may need to be. Here is an excerpt from an article by WION News addressing this very question.

Use: Which companies are embracing ChatGPT?

About one-third of HR leaders polled by Gartner said that they were not planning to issue any policies on the use of ChatGPT by their employees. Among the notables, hedge fund giant Citadel has embraced ChatGPT.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Corp. debuted its revamped suite of Office applications on Thursday. Microsoft has integrated OpenAI’s new GPT-4 AI model into Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and Word. The new Microsoft Office suit is currently being tested with 20 companies, Bloomberg reported.

The firms working on rules around the use of generative Artificial Intelligence are likely still in an exploratory phase, Eser Rizaoglu, senior director analyst in the Gartner HR practice told Bloomberg.

“They are probably questioning how much guidance, which roles will potentially use it or will not be able to use it, and if they should completely ban it or not,” Rizaoglu said.


Be on the lookout for an ERA-generated policy soon. Also, if you are looking for our updated employee handbook template, you can find it here. Please note you will need your membership log-in credentials to access the template.


What do you think about this?: The Power of Bare Minimum Mondays

Are you looking for a way to improve your employees’ mental health and increase productivity at the same time? Enter Bare Minimum Mondays!

As an HR company, we understand the importance of work-life balance and the impact it has on employee well-being. Bare Minimum Mondays is a simple concept that encourages employees to do the bare minimum required on Mondays to reduce stress levels and prioritize self-care.

In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of Bare Minimum Mondays for employees and discuss why businesses should adopt this approach in the workplace.

What Are Bare Minimum Mondays?

Bare Minimum Mondays is a new trend where employees aim to do the absolute minimum required on Monday workdays to counteract burnout, reduce stress, and focus on self-care. It has gained popularity through social media and has been adopted by some businesses as a way to promote better work-life balance.


What Are the Benefits of Bare Minimum Mondays for Employees?

Bare Minimum Mondays in the workplace can have numerous benefits for employees, including increased productivity and improved work-life balance. By encouraging employees to do the bare minimum required on Mondays, they can reduce stress levels and prioritize their mental health. This can lead to a more motivated and engaged workforce, resulting in increased productivity and better job satisfaction.

Additionally, promoting a better work-life balance can lead to improved physical health, reduced absenteeism, and increased retention rates. Overall, implementing Bare Minimum Mondays can help create a healthier and more sustainable work culture, benefitting both employees and the company as a whole.


What Are the Challenges of Bare Minimum Mondays for Businesses?

Have you noticed some employees implementing Bare Minimum Monday’s into their daily routine? Maybe someone from upper management has cited concerns about your team member’s productivity levels.

Effective communication and planning can help overcome the challenges some business leaders may find if employees begin to do Bare Minimum Mondays. First off, team leaders can address concerns from management by highlighting the benefits of prioritizing employee well-being, including increased productivity and better retention rates. Additionally, creating a comprehensive communication plan can help ensure that all employees are aware of the expectations and goals for Bare Minimum Mondays.

Companies can also provide support and resources to employees to help them manage their workload and reduce stress levels. By addressing concerns and creating a comprehensive plan, businesses can successfully implement Bare Minimum Mondays and create a healthier work culture.


How to Implement Bare Minimum Mondays in the Workplace

Implementing Bare Minimum Mondays in the workplace requires setting clear expectations and communicating them effectively to employees. Companies can start by explaining the concept to their employees and the importance of prioritizing mental health and work-life balance. Managers should also set realistic goals for the day and ensure that employees are not overloaded with tasks. It’s also essential to create a supportive culture that encourages employees to take care of themselves without fear of repercussions. Finally, companies can assess the impact of Bare Minimum Mondays by collecting feedback from employees and adjusting the approach as needed.

By setting expectations and communicating effectively, companies can successfully implement Bare Minimum Mondays and promote a healthier work culture.


If you’re interested in implementing Bare Minimum Mondays in your workplace or need guidance on how to prioritize employee well-being, reach out to ERA HR for customized in-house coaching for business leaders. Let’s work together to create a more sustainable and supportive work culture that benefits both employees and the company as a whole.

Project Management techniques Project Managers Should Know

Project management is one of the most important skills a manager needs to have in today’s fast-paced and ever-changing business environment. From developing a timeline to planning resources, project managers must understand the techniques and strategies needed to manage a project from start to finish so that they can lead and coordinate their team to complete a project on time and within budget.


Critical Path Method

The critical path method (CPM) is used to identify and monitor the critical activities of a project. It is used to determine the most efficient way to complete a project within a given time frame by analyzing the required tasks and their dependencies.

The CPM process begins by identifying the activities that need to be completed to produce the desired results. These activities are then broken down into smaller tasks, and their relationships with each other are established. Each task is then assigned an estimated duration. The critical path is then determined by adding up the estimated durations of the tasks that are dependent on each other. Any task that is not part of the critical path can be delayed without affecting the project’s completion date.

It also helps project managers identify potential problems and adjust the scheduling of tasks as needed. They can also decide which tasks require the most resources and attention and prioritize accordingly.

Finally, CPM helps project managers keep track of the project’s progress. By monitoring the critical path, project managers can identify potential delays or problems before they become major issues. This allows them to take corrective actions before the project falls behind schedule.


Scaled Agile Framework

The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) is an online tool developed by Scaled Agile Inc. that provides project managers with a structured framework for planning, executing, and controlling large-scale projects. It is designed to help organizations maximize efficiency and agility while maintaining control over complex projects.

SAFe is based on three core values: alignment, collaboration, and delivery. It is designed to help organizations align project goals with overall business objectives, promote collaboration between teams and stakeholders, and ensure the successful delivery of projects.

At its core, the framework is composed of several key components, including Agile Release Trains (ARTs), Solution Trains, and Lean-Agile Portfolios. ARTs are responsible for breaking down large projects into smaller, manageable pieces. They provide a high-level view of the project, allowing project managers to see how each piece fits into the overall project.

Solution Trains provide project teams with the tools and guidance necessary to develop working solutions that meet customer requirements.



The name “Kanban” is derived from the Japanese word for “signboard,” and it provides a simple visual system to manage projects, tasks, and resources. With Kanban, project managers can create boards that represent their project and the various tasks associated with it. They can then assign tasks to team members, set deadlines, and track progress. Kanban boards provide a visual overview of the entire project, so project managers can quickly identify where resources are needed and what tasks are outstanding.

The core elements of Kanban are cards, columns, and boards. Cards represent tasks and can be assigned to team members or assigned to a column. Columns represent stages in the project and can be customized to reflect the different steps in the project. Boards represent the entire project and provide a visual overview of all tasks, resources, and progress.

Kanban has become increasingly popular among project managers due to its effectiveness. It allows them to quickly assess the status of a project, identify areas of improvement, and ensure that tasks are completed on time. It also helps to reduce stress and improve communication, as project managers can easily see who is working on what and how tasks are progressing.



Finding the best project management technique for you and your team is essential for a successful outcome. If you need help developing and implementing your project management techniques, contact Employers Resource Association Inc. today.


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