Human Resources Awards Blog

Who's Coming to Friday's Stevie Awards for Great Employers Event?

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 @ 11:31 AM

The second annual Stevie Awards for Great Employers will be celebrated this coming Friday, September 22 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City with the announcement and presentation of the Grand, Gold, Silver and Bronze Stevie Awards.

The Stevie Awards for Great Employers recognize the world's best organizations to work for and the human resources team, professionals, achievements, and HR-related products and suppliers who help to create and drive great places to work. 

More than 500 nominations were submitted to the competition this year.  Three juries of more than 50 professionals around the world determined the Finalists, which were announced in mid-August.  All Finalist nominations will ultimately be named Gold, Silver and Bronze Stevie Award winners, and those placements will be revealed during Friday's presentations.

Two Grand Stevie Award trophy winners will also be announced on Friday: one for the highest-rated nomination in the competition, and the second for the organization that won the most awards overall.

Here's the current list organizations that will be represented at Friday's event:

90 Day Year Company
AINS, Inc.
Astrazeneca Turkey
Automated Business Designs
BCD Travel
Brainard Strategy
Concentrix Corporation
Cyber Human Capital
Deutsche Telekom Services Europe GmbH
DHL Mexico
Digital Air Strike
Elements Global Services
G&A Partners
GN ReSound
Haier Group
Hormel Food
iMerit Technology Services
Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality
Jive Communications, Inc.
Kuzey Academy
Mammoth HR
Merchant e-Solutions
Migros T.A.S
Phenom People
Reckitt Benckiser (RB)
Romanoff Consultants
Roth Staffing Companies
ServiceTitan, Inc.
State Street Corporation
Swiss Post Solutions Ltd.
Swiss Re
Tata Consultancy Services
Union Bank of the Philippines
UST Global
The Word & Brown Companies

Entries for the 2018 Stevie Awards for Great Employers will open next March.

Get the Entry Kit

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, Human Resources Department of the Year

Top 5 Ways Employers Can Help Women Advance, by HR Awards Winner Randstad

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Wed, Nov 27, 2013 @ 12:34 PM

Randstad, the second largest HR services and staffing company in the world, won two Stevie Awards for in The 2013 American Business Awards: a Gold Stevie for HR Executive of the Year in the Human Resources awards categories; and a Silver Stevie for Brand Experience of the Year in the Marketing awards categories. (Entries to The 2014 American Business Awards are now being accepted. Find out more here.)

Randstad recently published a survey showing how important a factor it is for a company to have women in positions of leadership when it comes to their prospective employees.  We asked Randstad for more information from their survey.  

Equal pay, more visible female leadership, and more family-friendly work policies are among the most beneficial ways in which companies can help women advance, according to male and female respondents to the latest Randstad US Employee Engagement Index study. More than three-quarters (76%) of the women surveyed felt whether a company “has women in positions of leadership” is important when considering taking a position with a new company.

When asked about the ways in which their company could best help women advance to leadership levels, following were the top 5 responses:

  1. Not surprisingly, equal pay was cited most often among women (49%) and men (37%).
  2. Having more women in leadership positions was the second most cited (named by 34% of women and 31% of men).
  3. More family-friendly work policies was the third most cited overall, selected by 31% of women and 26% of men.
  4. The fourth way was more leadership development programs for women, named almost equally by women and men (25% and 24%, respectively).
  5. Men and women differed significantly on their opinions on number five on the list, with 28% of women and just 20% of men noting that greater flexibility in terms of scheduling/telecommuting would help in the advancement of women.

Driving Innovation and Corporate Success

The study also found that 67% of total respondents strongly/somewhat agree with the statement: “By 2020, I expect there to be many more women in leadership positions in my company or organization.”  

Lisa Crawford“With nearly one billion women poised to enter the global economy in the coming decade, and representing the majority of college and advanced degree holders, employers will be increasingly reliant upon women in the workplace to drive innovation and corporate success,” said Lisa Crawford, senior vice president, Randstad US. “In order to compete in the growing war for female talent in the years ahead, companies that encourage the development and attainment of leadership positions equitably will be well-positioned in their recruitment efforts. The pursuit of leadership rank is a universal aspiration, and therefore organizations that help their workforce achieve those goals, regardless of gender, will emerge successful.” 

Women in the Workplace

Women and men surveyed by Randstad US weighed in on a variety of topics related to employee engagement and women in the workplace. Other relevant findings included:

  • Women are less likely to be considering a job change.
    In the next 6 months, according to Randstad’s Q3 2013 Engagement Study, 42% of men compared to 34% of women are likely to seek out a job in a different company; and 48% of men compared to 40% of women are likely to give a lot of consideration to a job offer.
  • Women are Optimistic about Opportunities for Growth with Their Employers. 
    Only 46%of women expect to have to switch employers to grow their careers, compared to 56% of men.

Elevating the Conversation

As one of the world’s largest staffing organizations and the third largest in the United States, Randstad US is committed to elevating the conversation around women and work. The company regularly creates and curates content on its Women Powering Business blog and convenes live conversations about women in leadership through its Women Powering Business initiative. Randstad Technologies is also partnering with CIO’s Executive Council to host events focused on women in technology careers in Boston, New York, Washington, DC, Chicago and Dallas.

Randstad US recently launched an Inspiring Women in Our Lives contest on Facebook, focused on recognizing the women who are prevailing challenges, overcoming obstacles, and breaking barriers at home, in the office and in their communities.

Survey Methodology

The Randstad Engagement Index is comprised of findings from quarterly waves of research targeting employees and annual surveys of employers. The eighth wave of findings was conducted online between September 19 and October 4, 2013 from a national sample of 2,033 adults aged 18 and older who are currently employed full time from Ipsos’ U.S. online panel.

Weighting was used to balance demographics and ensure samples reflect the U.S. population of working adults. Employees and employers were surveyed to compare notable differences in perceptions and attitudes. Multiple waves of research allow for trending and to track changes in perceptions and attitudes over time.  Research into employee attitudes and perceptions will be conducted quarterly. Research into employer attitudes and perceptions will be conducted on an annual basis.

About Lisa Crawford
Lisa Crawford joined Randstad in 2010 as the Senior Vice President of Human Resources, Professionals. In this role, Lisa provides HR support with a focus on areas of high impact, such as employee relations, organizational development, policy and procedures, and workforce planning.

With fifteen years of experience in HR, Lisa is an accomplished HR leader with subject matter experience in managing rapid growth, acquisition, integration, and turnaround situations. Prior to joining Randstad, Lisa’s career as a marketing strategist for blue chip financial services and technology clients provided her with the unique insights to define and measure tangible HR business results for individuals, teams and the overall enterprise.

Lisa is a graduate of Dartmouth College.

About Ipsos Public Affairs
Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice which conducts strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of American and international organizations, based on public opinion research.  They are the international polling agency of record for Thomson Reuters, the world’s leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals.  To learn more, visit:

About Randstad US
Randstad is a $22.0 billion global provider of HR services and the second largest staffing organization in the world. From temporary staffing to permanent placement to in-house, professionals, search & selection, and HR Solutions, Randstad holds top positions around the world and has approximately 29,300 corporate employees and around 4,500 branches and in-house locations in 39 countries. Founded in 1960 and headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands, Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam. Learn more at and access Randstad’s panoramic US thought leadership knowledge center through its Workforce360 site that offers valuable insight into the latest economic indicators and HR trends shaping the world of work.         

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr department of the year, randstad, lisa crawford, business awards, stevie awards

5 Ways HR Awards Winner Achieved $2 Million in Savings

Posted by Liz Dean on Wed, Feb 06, 2013 @ 01:03 PM

Fazoli's Italian Restaurants of Lexington, Kentucky, USA, won the 2012 Gold Stevie® Award for Human Resources Department of the Year in the HR awards categories of The 2012 American Business Awards, the premier business awards competition in the U.S.A. (The entry deadline for the 2013 ABAs is March 27, request your entry kit here and it will be emailed to you right away.) Here we look at the human resources awards winner's progressive and innovative practices which helped lead to an annualized savings of $2,192,000.

Dave Craig, Fazoli's Italian Restaurants Fazoli’s is one of the largest quick-service Italian restaurant chains in the United States, and because catering is such a people-driven industry, its HR department plays a vital role in the company’s success.  Its four Associates have a combined 51 years’ experience with the company, and 59 years of total HR experience. The department provides HR support to nearly 5,000 Associates in 127 company-owned and 93 franchised locations in 26 states.

In 2011, Fazoli’s HR department, led by Vice President of HR Dave Craig, was instrumental in propelling the brand to its best sales and profit performance in over a decade. A 39% reduction in Associate turnover resulted in annualized savings of $2,192,000, while a relentless focus on “Right People, Right Places, Right Now!” contributed to an 18-month streak of same-store sales growth, despite challenging economic conditions.

Tools of the Trade

According to Craig, there were five elements that contributed to this success:

  1. Implementation of PeopleAnswers®, an automated pre-employment application, assessment, and background check solution. Said Craig: “The PeopleAnswers (PA) program raises the bar on the quality of new Associates and provides our hiring managers with insight on whether to deploy new Associates in service or non-service positions. The hospitality industry is heavily dependent on the ability of front-line service workers—usually paid at or near minimum wage in a high stress, high turnover environment —to win and keep customers. Managers needed a reliable and predictive instrument to ensure top quality Associates are hired and deployed according to their unique talents and abilities.”  According to Craig, the PA system also enhances the efficiency of hiring and selection processes, saving hiring managers an average of eight hours per month, per restaurant.

  2. Implementation of SilkRoad’s RedCarpet program, featuring automated on-boarding, orientation, and electronic employment records archiving. According to Craig: “As a company that regularly acquires new talent, this solution standardized new Associate on-boarding and orientation processes, and automated the new hire administrative workflow. I calculate that ROI has exceeded 3:1.”

  3. Implementation of EBix®, an employee benefits and claims processing solution. Commented Craig: “EBix has eliminated paper enrollment and shifted our HR focus from manual benefits administration to proactive marketing and educating on essential benefits information.”

  4. Development of a best-in-class GREAT GUEST SERVICE index, combining several workforce matrixes to create one combined customer service metric.  Says Craig: “This Index is used by Operations to predict customer service levels by location and to prioritize management focus accordingly. As a result, customer complaints have decreased by 39%. The Index has also revealed that our higher-scoring restaurants achieved 54% more incremental sales than lower-scoring restaurants.”

  5. Completion of a 3-year Associate Engagement study.  According to Craig, this study revealed a direct correlation between engagement, sales, and profit. Every point of enhanced Associate engagement equals $12,539 incremental sales and $21,446 additional profit annually per location.

Delivering an Outstanding Customer Experience
These HR results were all part of the department’s 5-year plan, which was developed when Fazoli’s was acquired by Sun Capital Partners in 2006. The plan centered on adding enterprise value through enhanced customer service, and increased sales and profits via measurable enhancements to human capital.

“Fazoli’s pursuit of excellence is more than a slogan, it’s a mandate. The Stevie Award recognizes the critical role human resources management plays in our success,” said Carl Howard, president and CEO. “Recruiting and retaining the right people for both restaurants and support departments enables Fazoli’s to deliver our guests an outstanding experience. I am very proud that our human resources department, led by Dave Craig, was selected for this prestigious award.”

About Dave Craig:
Vice President of HR Dave Craig has been an HR practitioner in the restaurant industry since 1986, including the past 17 years with Fazoli's. Craig’s HR team has been nationally recognized for excellence in human resources programs and practices, and in addition to the Stevie Award was a Finalist in the 2010 National Restaurant Association's SPIRIT Awards

Craig is a graduate of Ohio University. He has also earned certifications as a Senior Professional, Human Resources and a Certified Fraud Examiner.

About Fazoli’s:
An American family favorite for more than 20 years, Fazoli’s is a leading, next generation QSR franchise opportunity. With a premium menu of freshly prepared Italian entrees, Submarinos sandwiches, and salads; a new service style featuring table service; and a contemporary new restaurant design, Fazoli’s is well positioned for growth. Already America’s largest Italian quick-service chain with more than 220 restaurants, Fazoli’s is expanding in select markets throughout the country. Founded in Lexington, Ky. in 1988, Fazoli’s was acquired by Sun Capital Partners in 2006.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr department of the year, American business awards, Fazoli's, Dave Craig

How HR Award Winner's "One Company" Vision Increased Employee Retention Rates

Posted by Liz Dean on Wed, Feb 15, 2012 @ 12:19 PM

Aygaz of Istanbul, Turkey, received the Stevie® Award for Human Resources Team of The Year in the HR awards categories of The 2011 International Business Awards. (Entries are now being accepted for The 2012 International Business Awards, the world's premiere business awards program. Get your entry kit here and submit entries by the April 11 early-bird deadline for discounted entry fees.) Here we look at the steps the HR Team took to pull Aygaz and its subsidiaries together under a “one company” vision.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary, Aygaz is the main provider of liquid petroleum gas (LPG) in Turkey, and is one of the largest LPG providers in Europe. In addition to producing and selling gas appliances, Aygaz has a subsidiary portfolio ranging from liquid petroleum gas trade to electricity generation, natural gas distribution, and maritime logistics. Led by Yagiz Eyüboglu, Aygaz's General Manager, the HR team was charged with adopting a single management policy to accommodate their numerous subsidiaries.

Integration Yagiz Eyüboglu
The human resources awards winning team at Aygaz seized the single-management policy as an opportunity to derive extra benefits through an integrated HR management within the new structure. The aim was to create synergy in HR through a shared vision and to provide benefits for all the new group’s stakeholders.

“One Company” Approach
The Aygaz Group’s HR processes were overhauled with the participation and contribution of all its subsidiaries.  The resulting “One Company” shared vision of HR processes followed five steps: 

1. Recruitment Process
The first step was improvement of the recruitment process. Interviews were integrated for similar vacant positions. This saved time for the HR team and provided candidates with information about different positions within the Aygaz Group. (The HR team also integrated their recruitment process with an internal job-posting system within the Koç Group of Companies, of which Aygaz is one.) This has allowed employees to manage their own careers, and in turn led to reduced employee turnover and increased employee motivation.

2. Training Program
Costs were significantly reduced through an integrated training program, while the average training time per employee increased. (In 2009, the average number of training hours per employee per year was 18; in 2010, this increased to 21 hours; and the current training time per employee is 25 hours.)

The HR team also designed an orientation program that provides information about all the group’s companies to more rapidly integrate new employees into the company.

3. Performance Management
The integration and “one company vision” necessitated an overhaul of the performance management system. This system now enables top management to share its objectives with all employees—and at the same time recognizing their achievements. Since 2009, all personal scorecards have been prepared in conjunction with Aygaz Group goals.

4. Compensation
Compensation management policies were also reviewed. New adjustments meant that Aygaz determined salary levels of employees by considering similar positions at other companies in the group. An “Equal Pay for Equal Work” policy was adopted.

5. Internal Mobility
Internal mobility has been actively encouraged and employees are now given the opportunity to move to other positions in the group without losing any of their rights.  A Social Activity Club was also launched to increase interactivity between Aygaz and its subsidiaries.

A Better Place to Work
By 2010 employee turnover at the Aygaz group had dropped to 2.5%, compared to the average rate of 9% in Turkey. 

The steps taken by the human resources award winning team to serve the bigger picture have resulted in Aygaz winning the Turkish Personnel Management Association’s Best Practice Award in Human Management in 2010.

About Yagiz Eyüboglu:
Yagiz Eyüboglu is the General Manager of Aygaz. Eyüboglu started his professional life as a Management Trainee at Arcelik in 1991. In 1993, he was transferred to Koç Holding Headquarters, where he worked for more than 10 years, finishing as a Financial Coordinator. Between 2004 and 2009, Eyüboglu assumed several different responsibilities within the Koç Group including CFO of Arcelik, CEO and Board Member of Beko Elektronik, and Human Resources Director of Koç Holding. Eyüboglu is a member of several boards, including the Turkish Confederation of Employer Associations and the Turkish Employers’ Association of Metal Industries. He is also the Chairman of LPG Assembly at The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey and is Vice President of the World LPG Association.

About Aygaz:
Now celebrating its 50th anniversary, Aygaz manufactures and sells LPG devices and distributes LPG as auto gas, cylinder gas, and bulk gas to customers in 81 Turkish provinces as well as exports LPG devices to 22 countries in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. Listed as Turkey’s 7th largest industrial company by the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, Aygaz delivers gas cylinders to over 100,000 homes, and more than one million vehicles travel with Aygaz’s auto gas product, Aygaz Euro LPG+ every day. Aygaz has more than 15,000 personnel working at its headquarters and at its facilities and dealerships around Turkey. The organization sees these employees as key to delivering its promise to consumers to provide quality products and services—and to the community to use sustainable business practices.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr award, human resources award, business awards, International business awards, stevie award, Aygaz, Yagiz Eyüboglu

HR Awards Judges in The 2011 International Business Awards

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Fri, Aug 05, 2011 @ 03:07 PM

This week we've been recognizing the contributions of the judges in The 2011 (8th Annual) International Business Awards, the world's only fully-international, all-encompassing business awards program.

Today we honor the participation of the human resources awards judging panel, which was an all-Turkish committee, including

Ece Alakoc, CFE, CIB HR Business Partner, Unicredit Bank CIB (Corporate and Investment Banking Division), Istanbul, Turkey
Yesim Arkis, Vice President, Head of HR, Ericsson Middle East, Istanbul, Turkey
Ozan Duman, Head of HR, Levi Strauss & Co., Istanbul, Turkey
Hale Okmen, Head of Human Resources, SHAYA, Istanbul, Turkey
Ayse Guclu Onur, Consultant, Egon Zehnder International, Istanbul, Turkey
Pinar Temizkan, Human Resources Director, Alcatel Lucent, Turkey and Azerbaijan, Istanbul, Turkey
Savas Usta, HR Director, Turk Telekom A.S., Istanbul, Turkey

Sengul DemircanSengul Demircan, Head of HR, HSBC Bank Turkey, Istanbul, Turkey, chaired and formed this committee, which judged categories including

  • Human Resources Department of the Year
  • Human Resources Team of the Year
  • Human Resources Executive of the Year
  • Training Web Site of the Year
  • Training Production of the Year

This year's honorees selected by the committee include Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters, Accenture, Aygaz, Orange Slovensko a.s., and Protiviti.  See the complete list of HR awards honorees here.  

What do you think of the HR awards committees selections?

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr department of the year, International business awards, stevie awards, IBAs

3 Best Practices for Leadership: Q&A with Jim Gillece, Senior VP of Human Capital Management at AlliedBarton

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Fri, Apr 15, 2011 @ 10:29 AM


Jim Gillece will chair the final judging committee for the human resources awards categories of The 2011 American Business Awards. April 27 is the final entry deadline for this year's ABAs.

Jim GilleceWhat are your top tips on best practices in Leadership?
At AlliedBarton Security Services we are strong believers in the culture of leadership, and three ways we encourage this are:

Mentoring: Those who have worked their way up to management or executive positions are encouraged to reach out and help others do the same. 

Training: Organizations that value leadership at all levels ensure that development opportunities are available for employees at all levels. Our front line employees and security officers complete voluntary training because they want to increase their knowledge and further their careers.

Recognition Programs: Employees must know what is expected of them and know that their company will support them as they perform their duties. If you have well-trained, empowered, and engaged employees, you will have satisfied customers who keep coming back.  

What item of news recently caught your eye and why?
Japan's earthquake and tsunami. I continue to be impressed by the global outpouring of assistance to this nation for the devastating losses it has suffered. I have also observed the unique role played by social media and technology in communication, relief, and response to this disaster.     

If you could choose another profession, what would it be?
I would be involved in some sort of nonprofit organization that could help provide more opportunities for children with autism or developmental disabilities.

What quality or qualities do you most value in your business associates?
Integrity, organization, and tenacity.

What do you think is the worst bad habit to have at work?
Saying “Yes” to everything, and procrastination.

As someone at the top of your profession, what keeps you inspired or makes you hit the ground running in the morning?
I really enjoy and am challenged by what I do, but I feel there is much more that needs to be improved and accomplished. Our security officers protect and secure the families and employees of our clients every single day. It is an honor to facilitate processes and programs for our “Everyday Heroes.” 

About Jim Gillece
Jim Gillece joined AlliedBarton Security Services in 2006 as Vice President, Learning and Organizational Effectiveness.  He was appointed Senior VP of Human Capital Management in 2007. Gillece oversees all human capitalmanagement including learning and development, organizational effectiveness, human resources, compensation, benefits, and recruitment.

Before joining AlliedBarton Security Services, Gillece worked for nine years at Pfizer, Inc., first as Specialty Division Manager in Union, Kentucky; then as Director, Global Leadership Education and Development in New York City, where he was responsible for the leader-of-leaders education level at Pfizer.

About AlliedBarton Security Services
AlliedBarton Security Services is a provider of highly trained, responsive security personnel. More than 50,000 employees and 100 offices provide security for several thousand clients in many industries, including approximately 200 Fortune 500 companies. AlliedBarton has been recognized by Training magazine, ASTD, Corporate University Xchange, Leadership Excellence, and the American Business Awards, among others. For more information visit

Want to win human resources awards in The American Business Awards or another Stevie Awards competition? Check out our free tipsheet, 10 Tips for Winning HR Awards in the 2011 Stevies.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, business awards, Jim Gillece, AlliedBarton

How $54 Buys Happy Employees at HR Award-winning TMH

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Fri, Jan 14, 2011 @ 11:55 AM

Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare, of Tallahassee, Florida, received the Stevie Award for Human Resources Team of the Year in the HR awards categories of The 2010 American Business Awards.

TMH HR TeamThe HR division at Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare (TMH) includes a colleague Activities department, which is a rare, if not unique, budgeted HR function in the non-profit healthcare organization sector.  While many healthcare organizations, particularly in the not-for-profit arena, are cutting budgets and experiencing staff reductions, TMH continues to support what it considers the organization's most valuable asset, the TMH Colleagues, through year-round celebration, recognition, and reward.

TMH is a private, not-for-profit community health-care system in Florida, U.S.A. that includes a 770-bed hospital specializing in cardiology, oncology, orthopedics, neurology, women's and children's health, behavioral health, surgery and emergency medicine, a Family Medicine Residency Program, and five satellite physician practices. TMH has a medical staff of over 500 physicians and in excess of 3,500 staff; its Colleagues are those people employed by TMH. 

The entire TMH organization is dedicated to providing quality patient care in an environment governed by the “ICARE” values—a set of five values, which were created by a multidisciplinary team of leadership and non-leadership colleagues.  The ICARE values include Integrity, Compassion, Accountability, Respect, and Excellence and are integrated in nearly every aspect of the organization’s operations.

Monthly Awards
The Human Resources team is charged with responsibility for colleague celebration and­—simply put—fun. While most organizations have some sort of colleague-recognition program, the TMH Colleague reward-and-recognition program offers fun and much more. Formal colleague-recognition programs consist of the ICARE Caring Hands, the ICARE Colleague of the Month, and the ICARE Ambassador and President's Awards. A monthly awards ceremony honors recipients nominated by their managers or peers, or in recognition of some “above and beyond” behavior related to customers. The celebration includes an enormous cake to celebrate colleagues with birthdays during that month.

Summer of Fun
Each year TMH celebrates seven holidays with colleague parties and contests; there are at least three colleague picnics a year; celebrations during national Hospital Week and on the Fourth of July; and a grand finale, The Seafood Fest, which marks the end of the “Summer of Fun.”

These all-colleague feasts feed in excess of 3,500 colleagues. The late shifts participate in their celebrations at midnight on the day following the event. The Summer of Fun starts in June each year and culminates in late August with the Seafood Fest, with prizes for all colleagues.

In 2009 the Summer of Fun had a pirate theme. Events such as “Walk the Plank Poker,” “Create an ICARE Treasure Map,” a “Pineapple Decorating Contest,” and a “Pirates Cove” game day were a few of the events held that summer. Department contest winners got the chance to play “Deal or No Deal,” with the chance to win up to $3,000 to spend without restriction for their department. Colleagues also competed in individual contests to gain points to spend on prizes at the end of the celebration. The 2009 top prize was $1,500, three days paid leave time, and a big-screen TV.

Low Costs, High Returns
TMH hosts numerous department-based celebrations that boost morale and recognize colleagues; additionally, a Colleague Craft Show, a softball tournament, a bowling team and tournament, a golf tournament, and games colleagues may participate in on the TMH Intranet are commonplace. Ice Cream Socials and “surprise” breakfasts are frequently held for staff in various departments of the organization.

The TMH Colleague Activities team travels to TMH-owned physician practices scattered in rural counties, bringing them food, treats and games to ensure that the more distant colleagues feel included in TMH celebrations.

The approximate budget for all of these wonderful events, contests, and colleague-recognition events is a modest $54 per employee per year. Colleagues from across the organization are involved by volunteering to support the celebrations and judging events, while the TMH HR division provides outstanding events that are stress relieving, entertaining and­—as we said before—fun.

About Felicia Polk
The Colleague Activities department is led by Felicia Polk, who is a certified Activity Director with over twenty years experience. Polk joined Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare fifteen years ago as the Activity Director in TMH's long-term care facility. She later transferred into Human Resources because she loved the idea of creating programs and events that recognize and celebrate the value of TMH colleagues.

About Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare
Founded in 1948, Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare (TMH), a 770-bed acute-care hospital, is the largest private employer in the region, specializing in heart and vascular, cancer, medicine, orthopedics, neurology, women’s and children’s health, behavioral health, surgery, and emergency medicine. TMH employs over 3,500 professionals dedicated to providing world-class healthcare to the Big Bend region of Florida.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr department of the year

How HR Award-winner Steve Seeman Links Human Capital to Business Success

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Fri, Jan 07, 2011 @ 12:51 PM

Steve Seeman, Senior Vice President and Director of Human Resources at Makovsky + Company in New York City, was named Human Resources Executive of the Year in the human resources awards categories of The 2010 American Business Awards.

Steve Seeman2009 should have been a tough year for Makovsky + Company.  It was for many PR agencies.  Instead, 2009 was a red-letter year for Makovsky, thanks to the firm’s specialized focus, the effectiveness of its campaigns, and the stellar quality of the people who executed them. 

Steve Seeman’s job—and his passion—is to ensure the continuing quality of the human element in that equation.  In 2009, his efforts led to a number of awards, including recognition by The Holmes Report as “Best Agency to Work For” for the sixth year running.  The firm was honored again in 2010 with the Iron SABRE Award for “Best Employee Program,” in recognition of Steve’s pioneering, morale-boosting programs. In fact, the founder of the SABRE Awards sent him the following note: “Congrats. I thought you made an incredibly impressive commitment to staff in a difficult year, so the award was one of the easier picks.”
In addition, Steve found the time to share his expertise with the industry by serving as a member of the HR Roundtable of the Council of PR Firms and authoring PRWeek career-advice columns.  He was also seen as a go-to expert source for publications including Human Resources Executive and the New York Post.

The Power of Specialized Thinking
Thirty years ago, at a time when the rest of the PR industry was touting the benefits of generalization, Makovsky + Company was founded on the conviction that specialization was the best way to build reputation, sales, and fair valuation for clients.   Delivering on the company’s vision of the Power of Specialized Thinking™ required a certain type of professional:  analytical, entrepreneurial, and energetic, with deep knowledge of specialty areas and relevant relationships with the media.

Steve has been responsible for attracting, developing, and retaining the talent that has been the engine of Makovsky’s growth.   In 2009, he significantly expanded the firm’s use of social media for recruitment purposes and introduced eleven new professionals to its Financial Services, Technology, Health, Investor Relations, and Branding practices.  

Providing Support + Recognition
To maximize staff tenure, Steve has developed and continuously refined a comprehensive toolkit for employee success:

•  Mak University, Makovsky + Company’s own continuing-education program, with seminars, workshops, and personal coaching.  In 2009, Steve expanded the curriculum to include advanced training sessions for the firm’s “rising stars.”
•  Pathway to Growth career guide.
•   “We Achieve” program, honoring colleagues who role model the firm’s values.
•   Monthly staff meetings with guest speakers on business, financial, political, and cultural topics. 
•   The internal MAK Awards, where outside judges select the best campaigns of the year.
•   The Young Leadership Award for junior staff, based on best original thinking for clients.
•   The Hot Award, given quarterly for performance “above and beyond the call of duty.”
•   Mak News, the company’s quarterly employee newsletter.
•   A suite of work/life balance initiatives, including flexible scheduling, telecommuting, and the company’s own Lifestyle Committee.
•   An intern program, open to college students and recent graduates. 

Linking Human Capital + Business Success
There is a clear cause-and-effect relationship between loyal employees and a
loyal customer base.  Research has shown that companies that manage people
well outperform companies that don’t by as much as 40%. 

Makovsky + Company believes its superb staff retention rate of 90% has contributed directly to its industry-leading client retention rate (80%).  In 2010, more than 90% of its clients rated Makovsky “good” to “exceptional” in six important metrics:  overall performance, value for money, responsiveness to client needs, rapport, creativity, follow-through, and strategic thinking.

Recognition + Respect
Steve’s energetic and focused management of the HR function in 2009 contributed to both individual and firm-wide successes, including 12 prestigious industry awards.

At Makovsky, the greatest concern has never been how to engage audiences, but how to win their hearts and minds.  Steve not only understands the importance of building enthusiasm and trust … he embodies it. 

About Steve Seeman
Under the leadership of SVP Steve Seeman, the firm’s HR Director, Makovsky + Company has achieved one of the industry’s highest employee longevity rates—80% in 2009—and has been voted “Best Agency to Work For” year after year by The Holmes Report. A key member of Makovsky’s management team for 10 years, Steve focuses on recruitment and retention, employee relations, professional development, and performance management.  He serves on the HR Roundtable of the Council of PR Firms and frequently authors PRWeek career-advice columns.

Formerly with Alan Taylor Communications, Chandler Chicco, and Fleishman Hillard, Steve is a summa cum laude graduate of City University of New York-Brooklyn College.

About Makovsky + Company
Founded in 1979, Makovsky + Company is one of the nation’s largest independent global public relations, investor relations, and branding consultancies, specializing in integrated communications programs for the financial, professional services, health, technology, and business services sectors. Based in New York City, the firm has agency partners in more than 25 countries and in 35 U.S. cities through IPREX (, a worldwide public relations agency partnership of which Makovsky is a founder. For more information go to

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Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr award, human resources award, steve seeman, makovsky

10 Ways HR Pros Can Be Honored in the 2011 Stevie Awards

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Wed, Dec 01, 2010 @ 04:56 PM

Sengul Demircan of Avea accepts HR Stevie Award at 2010 International Business AwardsWe recently published a new tipsheet called 10 Tips for Winning HR Awards in the 2011 Stevie® Awards Get it here..

It summarizes the 10 best ways that human resources, benefits administration, and training professionals can be recognized in the four Stevie Awards competitions in 2011 (which include The American Business Awards, the International Business Awards, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service).  For the most part it recommends the human resources awards, training awards, and other categories that HR folks should focus on, and outlines the general submission requirements for those categories.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, hr award, human resources award, employee award, employee awards

HR Bartender Wins Blog of Year in the Stevie Awards for Women

Posted by Michael Gallagher on Tue, Nov 16, 2010 @ 05:33 PM

ITM Group, Inc. in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida won a Stevie Award for their HR Bartender blog, for Blog of the Year in the Business Services industry, in the 7th annual Stevie Awards for Women in Business last Friday night.  The awards recognize women executives, women entrepreneurs, and the organization they run worldwide.  Most of the awards are for individuals and/or their organizations, but there are also a handful of web site awards, blog awards, marketing awards, advertising awards, and public relations awards categories in the Stevies for Women in Business.

ITM Group, Inc. is a strategic human resources consulting firm that works with client companies to cultivate individual and organizatioSharlyn Laubynal talent.

In nominating the HR Bartender blog, ITM Group wrote: "HR Bartender is a friendly place to discuss workplace issues.  It was created to give working women and men the opportunity to learn critical aspects of business and management tips from a human resources perspective.  Key learnings center around leadership, professional development,
strategic planning, workplace social media and career strategies."

In accepting her Stevie Award on November 12, Sharlyn Lauby, SPHR, and President of ITM Group, Inc., said she called her blog HR Bartender because through the years she's grown to feel that HR professionals are thought of like bartenders: always available, with a smile, willing to listen, and to offer comfort to those in need.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, blog awards, stevie awards, women awards, women in business awards