Talent Edge Weekly - Issue # 166

Impact of generative AI on HR, the FTC's proposed ban on non-compete agreements, HR value creation, the tensions of hybrid work, and the HR Business Partner role.

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Welcome to this week’s issue of Talent Edge Weeklybringing together insights about work, the workplace, and the workforce. Read by human resources practitioners, business leaders, and others interested in the world of work.

A special shout-out to Geoffrey Roche, SVP, National Health Care Practice & Workforce Partnerships at Core Education PBC — for referring new subscribers to Talent Edge Weekly. Thank you, Geoffrey, for your support of this newsletter!

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For free access to +1000 curated articles and resources, visit brianheger.com

To see which Chief HR Officers are being hired, promoted, and resigning, join CHROs on the Goa digital subscription that provides the easiest way to stay informed about movement in and out of the CHRO role.

Have a great week, and I look forward to sharing more ideas in next week’s Edge!


Brian Heger is an internal human resources practitioner with a Fortune 150 organization and has responsibilities for Strategic Talent and Workforce Planning. You can connect with Brian on Linkedin, Twitter, and brianheger.com


Below is a glance at the content of this week's issue. My detailed summaries of these resources can be found in the section after this one.

And don't forget to check out the Chief HR Officer Hire of the Week, the 2023 Job Cuts and Layoffs Tracker, the most viewed resource from last week, and more!


This new article by Josh Bersin shares seven use cases for how generative AI tools have the potential to revolutionize HR and various talent practices. Generative AI (e.g., ChatGPT) and Large Language Models can index, categorize, and cluster billions of “tokens,” which include words, phrases, numbers, and even code, to find patterns and predictions you can query. These capabilities provide a way to analyze, summarize, and infer meaning from various sources of information. A few HR use cases include 1) creating content for job descriptions, competency guides, learning outlines, and onboarding and transition tools, 2) creating skills models, experience models, and candidate profiles for recruiting, and 3) analyzing and improving pay, salary benchmarks, and rewards. I believe performance management (PM) and feedback are a use case with much potential. Generative AI can scrape vast amounts of information—performance goals, development objectives, feedback surveys, etc.—and take a first pass at organizing information for managers and workers to reflect on. These tools aren’t intended to replace managers’ and employees’ roles in PM but to help augment human capability in delivering more effective PM. And since PM is a core talent practice used across the entire organization, this use case—when used correctly (i.e., must be done ethically, provide proper guidance, manage risks, etc.)—can lead to greater effectiveness and efficiency and unlock capacity. What use cases will you begin to test and experiment with as part of your HR strategy? As a bonus, here is a new article from Boston Consulting Group, The CEO’s Guide to the Generative AI Revolution, which addresses short and long-term considerations for generative AI.

Noncompete agreements—which restrict employees from competing with their employer during or after employment—are used in many organizations. These clauses are often designed to prevent an employee from working for a direct competitor, starting their own competing business, working in the same industry, or soliciting the employer’s customers or clients. I previously shared that, on January 5, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) proposed a rule preventing employers from entering into noncompete clauses with workers and requiring employers to rescind existing noncompete clauses. The proposed rule would extend to all workers—whether paid or unpaid— and would require companies to rescind existing noncompete agreements within 180 days of publication of the final rule. This article covers five important considerations for CHROs and their teams as the rule’s timeline progresses. Two considerations are: 1) The ban on noncompete agreements contains no exceptions for senior executives and other highly sensitive employees, 2) The proposed rules would preempt state laws that allow the use of noncompete agreements. While the public initially had 60 days to comment on the rule, the FTC has extended the public comment period to April 19, 2023. The proposed rule has various talent implications—from retention to recruitment—that organizations should consider and factor into their talent plans and strategy.

As I mentioned in my 2016 article, Linking Talent Strategy with Business Strategy, HR practitioners are often proud of the practices, programs, and processes we create and implement. But as Dave Ulrich has mentioned repeatedly over the years, HR is not about HR. HR is about the business and how HR creates value for organizational stakeholders. This article by Dave provides a four-component framework comprising 11 ways HR delivers value. The four main pathways are 1) Talent (individual competence, people, workforce, and employees), 2) Leadership (individual leaders at all levels as well as leadership capability throughout an organization), 3) Organization (organization capability, culture, workplace, teams, and systems), and 4) HR (the characteristics of the HR function, practice, and people). For each of the 11 areas within these four pathways, Dave includes a visual for how these areas continue to evolve. HR leaders can use these visuals as a diagnostic to determine its “current state” and actions for evolving the four areas and 11 practices. As a bonus, here is a recent 42-minute Future of HR Podcast where host JP Elliott has an excellent discussion with Dave on various aspects of HR, including “HR is not about HR.”

Last week, I made a post about an article covering various regulatory developments that have implications for organizations’ remote work practices. For example, one point mentioned the European Union’s right to disconnect—a labor law concept that formalizes employees’ rights to disengage from work and refrain from work-related electronic communications during non-work hours. As leaders consider various factors that influence their guidance on remote work, this supplemental article addresses the topic from another set of considerations: looking at remote and hybrid work through the lens of types of tasks performed. The article differentiates four categories of tasks that can optimally be performed remotely versus at a company-designated location. For example, focused creative tasks (e.g., writing code or designing a brochure) require little teamwork and are easily supported by technology—allowing an easy transition to virtual work. However, collaborative creative tasks (e.g., product development, creative problem-solving, and strategic planning) are the most social type of tasks — and are important elements of innovation processes. The authors note that, for managers in their study, it was their experiences with collaborative creative tasks in hybrid environments that exposed the potential negative consequences for culture and innovation. Several other ideas are provided that leaders can refer to as they make informed decisions about remote and hybrid work.

This article provides ideas on how Human Resources Business Partners (HRBP) can create value for organizational stakeholders. It starts with the premise that HRBPs must understand the trends that will shape how work gets done in the future, as well as the key actions HRBPs will take to support the line in operationalizing these trends. The article integrates several trends into seven implications that will guide the work of HRBPs. Among the seven implications are: 1) Fairness and Equity Become Top Priorities, but Hybrid Harms DEI Efforts, 2) Hybrid Drives More Turnover, and 3) Automation Changes the Manager Role. For each implication, recommended actions are offered. For example, as emerging technology automates many managerial tasks, HRBPs will work with managers and leaders to spotlight empathy as a key capability for people leaders to succeed in their roles. Given the updated scope of people leadership, HRBPs will work with Centers of Excellence leads to adjust high-potential employee selection criteria and successor matching to prioritize human leadership skills. Even if you are not an HRBP, the article provides insights into how HRBPs will partner with various organizational stakeholders to deliver value. For a bonus article on increasing the strategic impact of HRBPs, check out Gartner’s article, How to Identify and Overcome Barriers to Strategic HRBP Impact.


Provides several ideas for how HR can operate as an integrated system. Offers 10 ideas on how to make this shift. You can also view this post here on LinkedIn and join the discussion and/or share it with your network!


This past week, 20 new Chief Human Resources Officer announcements were posted on CHROs on the Go a subscription that provides the easiest way to stay informed about CHRO hires, promotions, and resignations.

This week’s CHRO highlight is:

  • GE Vernova (BOSTON) [NYSE: GE]—GE's portfolio of energy businesses—announced it has appointed Steven Baert as Chief People Officer, effective April 1. Mr. Baert currently serves as Managing Partner and Founder of Propuli llc, a firm based in Switzerland, specializing in human capital advisory services. From 2014 until 2021, Mr. Baert served as Chief People Officer and member of the Executive Committee of Novartis AG. READ MORE

Do you want to join hundreds of others getting the EDGE each week in knowing which CHROs are being hired, promoted, and resigning? If so:

Currently, there are +2000 CHROs announcements on CHROs on the Go, with 20-25 new announcements added each week!

If you are already a member of CHROs on the Go, you can log in to access all announcements and site functionality.

Here you can see the latest updates from a segment of organizations that have announced job cuts and layoffs since the start of 2023. Recruiters, search firms, and hiring managers can use this resource to identify opportunities for recruiting talent from organizations affected by layoffs. A few firms that announced job cuts this past week include Atlassian Corp. and SiriusXM.



Highlights a previously shared Talent Edge Weekly resource that received many views and engagement!

This one-page reference integrates four resources for managers to leverage as they identify and address their most critical employee retention risks.

If so, you can check out 12 of the most popular resources from February. Topics include CHRO as growth executive, workforce risks, learning & development, skills, employee wellbeing, and more!


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brianheger.com provides free access to +1,000 curated articles, research reports, podcasts, etc. that help practitioners drive better business results through strategic human resources and talent management.

CHROS on the Go is a subscription that provides the easiest and most convenient way to stay informed about Chief Human Resources Officer hires, promotions, and resignations in organizations of all sizes and industries.

Talent Edge Weekly is a free weekly newsletter that brings together the best talent and strategic human resources insights from various sources. It is published every Sunday at 6PM EST.

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