NZ Manufacturer February 2012
Yesterday’s home runs don’t win today’s games. – Babe Ruth
Salaries the top driving force for 36% of employees
alary expectations are a growing source of tension between businesses and employees, according to Hudson’s Salary and Employment Insights 2012 series of reports. “Employers are under pressure to simultaneously improve the quality of their hires and control the cost of these hires – they need valuable employees to take the business
forward, but not at any cost,” says Roman Rogers, Executive General Manager, Hudson New Zealand. “Facing the tension of trying to do more with less is especially difficult when salary is the top driver for 36% of employees, with many believing that it will be ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ to find a similar job with comparable pay and conditions.” Nearly seven out of 10 employees
When the going gets tough, the tough smarten up
xperts in business innovation and strategy presented the smartest advice at an event the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA) ran to help firms reach beyond the bounds of these tough times.
First up at the Smart Business Development conference earlier this month was Icehouse chief executive Andy Hamilton to answer questions like: • How do you know if a new idea is any good? • How do you turn an idea into something real? His ‘thinking big’ theme included tips, tools and stories on new product development. Thinking ‘Lean’ is no longer an ‘if’ but a ‘when,’ for all organisations. Efficiency expert Clinton Yeats of Yeats Consulting Ltd says Lean is now established as a disciplined approach for business to identify and eliminate all non-value adding processes. “It’s such a simple concept but dealing with people and change can be hard.” In rough times like these your competitors could be pulling back, says Chris Caiger, director of Traffic NZ Ltd. But businesses should seize the opportunity to create programmes to win market share
and launch new offers. “Fighting for market share on price is alarmingly expensive, and damaging to the brand and morale. It’s often far better to get out of the trenches and spend a fraction of the cost of a price cut on aggressive growth programmes. And they can be just as effective at defending price and market share, as well as creating growth,” Caiger says. Rob Verkerk of Scope Services Ltd adds it is more important than ever for firms to ensure their money is well-spent and returns maximised. “When implementing strategy, a disciplined, project management oriented approach is required, but in a way that eliminates mindless process compliance and report generation. “The problem for many is the success rate of projects can be low when its process-bound and compliance-oriented. But effective implementation of project management can improve profit by an average of 6%.” The Smart Business Development conference delivered practical tools to strengthen business operations, and sell more, or grow market share. It also discussed the latest in IT and web development, how to monetise research and development, and how to super-charge marketing cut-through.
Rob Verkerk of Scope Services Ltd
are considering moving jobs in 2012, while two-thirds of employers say they are worried about losing their existing high performers. Across the board, nearly 28% of employers intend to increase permanent staff levels. Candidates with business acumen, a crossfunctional knowledge and an ability to contribute to the organisation’s overall strategic direction are highly sought-after across all sectors. This is particularly evident as key business functions, including IT and finance, become a key driver of business performance. Almost half of hiring managers report the salary expectations of preferred candidates exceed their budget, with 43% increasing their budget to secure the best candidate, with the remaining employers settling for their second-choice.
Furthermore, about six out of ten employees feel that they deserve a pay rise in 2012. The skills shortage is intensifying competition for the most talented candidates – almost half (46%) of employers said it was harder to secure the right candidates in 2011, particularly for senior strategic and managerial roles. Organisations need to identify high achievers. To do this, they need to broaden their approach from traditional methods of selecting new hires that focus on technical qualifications and experience, And they need to understand their priorities in terms of the harderto-fill strategic roles that help take an organisation forward, and the ‘critical’ and ‘core’ roles that keep the organisation functioning on a day-to-day basis.
Come hell or high water RPM still gets through
eter Smith and Aaron Dwight from RPM International Tool and Die have just arrived back from a two week visit to clients in Thailand. The aim of the visit was to see where they could assist and arrange for damaged tooling to be bought back to New Zealand for repair and maintenance work. Both Peter and Aaron were overwhelmed with the devastation caused by the flooding and the enormous cost being incurred by the local manufacturers most of whom do not have insurance to cover the flood damage. The cost of flood damage at one client alone was up to NZ$4.0 million and the money meter was still ticking over with no production in sight. Flood waters were still up to a meter deep in some factories however on a brighter note other parts visited were not affected by the floods at all.
“We have a strong commitment to servicing our off-shore clients through thick and thin” says Director Peter Smith “and we have simply been waiting for a window of opportunity to get up there and see where we could be of assistance. We also took the opportunity to call on some new contacts as well as make a quick visit to Taiwan to look at two new pieces of plant that will be dispatched for arrival at RPM in the New Year.” “The floods are likely to have an impact on some tooling projects that were in the pipeline however overall we are very pleased with our market development in this part of Asia over the past year” he adds. The trip on the whole was very positive and well received and as one client put it to Peter and Aaron “A friend in need is a friend indeed”. www.nzmanufacturer.co.nz
NZ Manufacturer February 2012