Talent Edge Weekly - Issue #187

Building an HR strategy, performance management playlist, Bersin's new AI in HR report, return-to-office policies, and 15 resources for Chief HR Officers.


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Below is a glance at this week’s content. A deep dive is in the section that follows.

Also included is the 2023 Job Cuts and Layoff Tracker, the Chief HR Officer Hire of the Week, Tweet of the Week, and more.

Let’s dive in.


Note: When using this content in a newsletter, social media, website, etc., please provide proper attribution to Talent Edge Weekly and link to this issue!

Aligning HR strategy with business goals is crucial for organizational success. However, according to this Gartner report, only 32% of HR leaders surveyed have fully integrated their HR strategic planning process with the business planning process. To improve alignment between HR strategy and business strategy, the report suggests five key steps. 1) Understand your organization's strategy and goals, 2) Identify capabilities and skills for the future, 3) Evaluate current capabilities and skills, 4) Develop HR goals and criteria for success, and 5) Communicate your HR strategy. The report provides recommended actions for each step and includes supporting illustrations and templates. One example to highlight when identifying capabilities and skills for the future (step 2) is to ask questions such as a) From a talent perspective, what must be true for the organization to achieve its objectives? b) What talent issues would both leaders and employees agree must be addressed for the organization to succeed? c) Considering different talent risks (e.g., competitors), what is the degree of impact and likelihood of risk for each talent risk? As HR Leaders go through the steps, pages 8-9 include an editable template to document aspects of the HR strategic plan. As a bonus, here is my 2016 article, Linking Talent Strategy with Business Strategy (LinkedIn version). You can also access a PDF version here.

Leaders increasingly recognize the importance of performance management (PM) in driving business performance and stakeholder value. To help answer key questions related to PM, this one-page PDF provides five resources from reputable sources such as Gartner, Deloitte Insights, Harvard Business Review, and The Talent Strategy Group. The questions addressed cover topics such as the current PM practices used by organizations, the integration of employee well-being into PM, triggers for adjusting employee goals, strategies to mitigate bias in PM, and the use of PM to foster collaboration across business units and cross-functional silos. The reference provides insights from each source, such as The Talent Strategy Group's report revealing that 90% of organizations use performance ratings, Gartner's suggestion to incorporate well-being conversations into performance feedback discussions, and the importance of aligning PM practices with the company's goals and objectives. Before digging into these five resources, start with the foundational questions: what is the purpose and objectives of our company’s PM? What is our PM trying to solve? From there, determine the PM practices that enable those goals and outcomes.

This new 20-page report by Josh Bersin offers insights on AI in HR, covering various aspects such as AI technologies, vendor distinctions, and factors to consider for investment decisions. Page 17 presents 15 questions for organizations to ask vendors regarding their AI capabilities, including data sets, bias mitigation, industry-specific testing, and compliance with AI regulations. A few questions include: What data set or sets are you using to train your models? Can we see your research on bias and how you’ve reduced or eliminated it? If you are a skills vendor: How do you maintain your skills taxonomy? How is your system compliant with new AI regulations like those in New York? How does your system use human feedback to improve models over time? Can we talk with customers using your AI and see how well it performs? Figure 4 also provides a framework for comparing vendors. Since this paper requires a direct download from the Bersin site, you will need to provide them with the requested information to receive the report. For additional resources on AI in HR, you can check out my AI in HR Playlist, which includes a curated list of 5 resources for using AI in HR.

As organizations continue to navigate the transition from remote work to returning to the office, many are implementing return-to-office (RTO) policies. However, as mentioned in this article, strict enforcement of RTO policies can unintentionally hinder attendance and increase employee turnover rates. To address this issue, the article suggests utilizing data-driven insights to understand the impacts of RTO policies. For instance, HR leaders can compare attrition rates before and after implementing RTO policies to assess whether the policies are effectively increasing in-office attendance or causing a loss of headcount. The example provided is: “Take an employer that had 70% of its 1,000 employees adhering to its RTO policy before it implemented an enforcement plan. After launching the plan, attendance went up to 80%. That’s a gain of 10 percentage points, or 100 more employees coming into the office. But if the employer’s attrition rate was 5% before the RTO enforcement plan launch and jumped to 20% after, that’s a loss of 150 employees. So, 50 fewer employees are coming into the office.” Apart from employee turnover, RTO policies can also impact engagement, productivity, and an organization’s ability to attract top talent. As HR leaders assist their organizations in developing RTO policies and guidelines, it is crucial to employ data to help inform decision-making and mitigate the unintended consequences of RTO policies.

As Chief Human Resources Officers (CHROs) continue to drive personal, team, and organizational effectiveness, I am resharing this one-page PDF that includes 15 resources CHROs (and others) can leverage. I am resharing this resource since I continue to receive multiple requests for this document. I reshared this document on LinkedIn this past week, which resulted in significant engagement. The 15 resources are organized into five categories: 1) AI in HR. Shares ideas on how HR leaders can evaluate and implement AI within HR and the broader organization. 2) Transitioning to a New CHRO Role. Provides resources that can help CHROs speed up their transition into a new head of HR roles. 3) HR Strategy and Operating Models. Offers ideas for capturing aspects of HR strategy and HR operating model. 4) CHROs and the Board of Directors. Shares a few resources on talent and workforce questions Boards are asking, and 5) CHRO Effectiveness. Includes attributes of effective Chief HR Officers and shares ideas on determining the effectiveness of an HR team. The PDF contains links to the source documents. While the 15 resources are categorized under the header of “CHRO Resources,” several topics apply to those not in the CHRO role. Whether you are accessing the document for the first time or have viewed it before, one of the 15 resources will likely capture your interest.


Josh Bersin discusses creating a skills-based organization—highlighting the realities and challenges associated with its implementation.


This tracker includes announcements from a segment of organizations that have announced job cuts and layoffs since the start of 2023. 

A few firms that announced job cuts this past week include:

  • Cirrus Logic (NASDAQ:CRUS). The fabless semiconductor company says it is laying off 5% of its global workforce. This reduction is due to trouble with a product release and overall market conditions.

  • PVH Corp. (NYSE: PVH). The parent company to Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein announced additional plans to cut its headcount by 10%. The company didn’t specify how many more staff it would lay off, but said it expects to incur about $50 million of severance expenses.

  • Uber Freight (NYSE:UBER). Uber Freight has implemented layoffs in its legacy digital brokerage operations in the second round of cuts this year. The layoffs are expected to impact ~50 employees.

Click here or the image below to access all announcements on the tracker.


Lockheed Martin (BETHESDA, MARYLAND) [NYSE: LMT]—the global security and aerospace company—announced Christopher J. Wronsky as SVP and Chief HR Officer effective September 1. Wronsky succeeds Greg A. Karol, who will retire after a transition period. Wronsky has more than 35 years with Lockheed Martin and has served in positions of increasing responsibility in the business areas and internationally. His most recent position with the company is VP of Lockheed Martin's Rotary and Mission Systems HR organization, where he oversees strategy for 35,000 employees. READ MORE

Christopher J. Wronsky

  • If you want to know which CHROs are being hired, promoted, and resigning, check out CHROs on the Go.

  • If you are already a member of CHROs on the Go, log in here.

  • If you want a complimentary PDF that provides information on 12 CHROs who were hired or promoted from April through June 2023, click here.



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 issue #184, which includes 15 of the most popular resources from June. The resources are broken into 3 major themes—HR Effectiveness, Technology & AI, and Talent Trends and Practices.


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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.

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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.

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