Categories
Employment Finance Products and Services Surveys Technology

Does 24/7 Connectivity Equal Increased Productivity?

Does 24/7 Connectivity Equal Increased Productivity?

Randstad survey shows the majority of women disagree

ATLANTA, Feb. 19, 2013, With technology increasingly blurring the lines between work and home and women assuming more prominent roles at work, a survey released today by Randstad US reveals that constant connectivity does not mean increased productivity for women workers.

Randstad’s latest Engagement Index study reveals that while 42 percent of women believe it is increasingly difficult to disconnect from work while at home, the majority (68 percent) do not believe that the blurring of lines between work and home has increased their productivity.

“As enhanced technologies and increased access to information continues to blur the lines between our professional and personal lives, many workers mistake being busy for being productive,” said Linda Galipeau, Randstad CEO of North America. “These are two very different concepts that when looked at from an organizational standpoint—could have serious implications for a company’s bottom line. We are only productive if we’re producing the results that are most impactful to our goals. Being that we live in a multi-tasking world, it is important to work smarter and hone in on those high-impact efforts that will create more meaningful results. This is incredibly important, especially as women and men can now perform their jobs from almost anywhere.”

Other notable findings:

Flexible Working Arrangements and Policies Among Prime Benefits For Women

  • Forty-nine percent of women say their company is flexible and accommodating in terms of hours or working arrangements. Additionally, 33 percent of female respondents feel this is one of the most effective ways to engage them.

Women Cite the Top Asset in Growing Their Careers

  • In terms of the skills important to growing their careers, half of women surveyed (50 percent) chose flexibility/adaptability, followed by encompassing computer and technology skills (43 percent).

On-the-Job Relationships Impact Career Happiness

  • Women value their relationships with colleagues and supervisors. Relationships with their colleagues (87 percent) and direct supervisors (85 percent) have a big impact on their happiness with their jobs.

Randstad recently launched its Women Powering Business section on its Workforce360 thought leadership site. This section includes the latest research and trends shaping the way women work. For more information, as well as other research insights, advice and career resources, visit www.randstadusa.com/workforce360.

Methodology
The Randstad Engagement Index is comprised of findings from quarterly waves of research targeting employees and annual surveys of employers. The sixth wave of findings was conducted November 1-13, 2012 from a national sample of 3,417 aged 18 and older who are currently employed full time from Ipsos’ U.S. online panel were interviewed online.

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 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: www.ipsos-pa.com.

About Randstad US
Randstad is a $22.5 billion global provider of HR services and the second largest staffing organization in the world. From temporary staffing to permanent placement to inhouse, professionals, search & selection, and HR Solutions, Randstad holds top positions around the world and has approximately 28,700 corporate employees working from its nearly 4,700 branches and inhouse locations in 40 countries. Founded in 1960 and headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands, Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam. Learn more at http://www.randstad.com.

SOURCE: Randstad

 

Categories
Consumers Finance Financial News Personal Finance Surveys

Survey Demonstrates That Health Plans Are Optimistic

Moving Forward: Payers Weigh in on Priorities for 2013 and Beyond

The Managed Care Executive Group and HTMS survey demonstrates that health plans are optimistic and believe opportunities exist in post-reform era

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Feb. 15, 2013, The Managed Care Executive Group (MCEG) and HTMS, an Emdeon company, today jointly issued their fourth annual report examining critical issues, priorities and challenges for regional health plans in the post-reform era. The report, titled “Moving Forward: Payers Weigh in on Priorities for 2013 and Beyond,” is based on a survey of 75 health plans.

A highlight of this year’s findings was the health plans’ general optimism despite recent industry challenges. According to the survey, 82 percent of payers saw opportunities for their companies related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

“A common public perception is that health plans oppose reform,” said Ferris Taylor, strategy and planning director for MCEG and president of Armored Online. “Our findings show that sentiment is not the case. Only 13 percent of the health plans surveyed believe the ACA to be wholly negative for their business. Rather, organizations see opportunity for growth as the market changes.”

Full survey results will be shared during a webinar to be held at 3 pm ET on February 19, 2013. MCEG and HTMS executives will present results regarding how payers are handling operational issues, such as the Medical Loss Ratio (MLR), and challenges presented by the ACA, including participation in state health insurance exchanges (HIX). To register for the online event, visit http://www.htms.com/industrypulse.php.

Overwhelmingly, health plan respondents listed cost containment as their number one priority for 2013. Other continuing trends, such as participation in HIXs, accountable care and health information exchanges, appear to be stronger industry forces. In contrast to the 2012 report, administrative mandates were not a key focus for health plan respondents in the 2013 survey, likely due to the recent ICD-10 implementation deadline extension to October 1, 2014, and the transition to HIPAA 5010 that occurred last year.

Not surprisingly, growth also remained a key payer focus. “Health plans responding to the 2013 survey unanimously listed member retention and growth as their top operational objectives,” said Nancy Wise , vice president of strategic consulting for HTMS. “We believe that current industry drivers, including accountable care and the state HIXs, present opportunities for payers to expand their member base.”

To download a copy of “Moving Forward: Payers Weigh in on Priorities for 2013 and Beyond,” or to view previous research reports, visit http://www.htms.com/industrypulse.php.

About The Managed Care Executive Group

The Managed Care Executive Group (MCEG) is a national organization that provides a forum for the open exchange of information, innovative ideas and experience among senior health plan leaders. MCEG was formed in 1988 to create a comfortable forum for the exchange of ideas, the development of valuable peer relationships and the opportunity to explore the innovation that will transform organizations and the industry. Its 24th Annual Forum begins March 10, 2013. Register at www.mceg.net.

About Emdeon

Emdeon is a leading provider of revenue and payment cycle management and clinical information exchange solutions, connecting payers, providers and patients in the U.S. healthcare system. Emdeon’s product and service offerings integrate and automate key business and administrative functions of its payer and provider customers throughout the patient encounter. Through the use of Emdeon’s comprehensive suite of products and services, which are designed to easily integrate with existing technology infrastructures, customers are able to improve efficiency, reduce costs, increase cash flow and more efficiently manage the complex revenue and payment cycle and clinical information exchange processes. For more information, visit www.emdeon.com.

SOURCE: Emdeon Inc.

 

 

Categories
Employment Entrepreneurs Finance Personal Finance Surveys

Women Business Owners Decidedly Optimistic About 2013

Women Business Owners Decidedly Optimistic About 2013

Web.com and NAWBO survey reveals the primary factors impacting women business owners

WASHINGTON, Feb. 11, 2013, A national survey of women business owners (WBOs) conducted by Web.com Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: WWWW) and the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) found a pervasive sense of economic optimism, including a prediction by most WBOs (85 percent) that more women will become entrepreneurs in 2013 than in past years. WBOs also plan to invest more (38 percent) or the same (54 percent) in hiring this year than they did in 2012 – a positive sign for the economy.

2013, the Year of the Female Entrepreneur
The State of Women-Owned Businesses survey found that the large majority of WBOs were optimistic about their business’ overall performance (81 percent) for the year ahead. They were also optimistic, though slightly less so, about the broader economic outlook (74 percent) in 2013.

“The 2013 State of Women-Owned Businesses Survey reveals that even in these tough economic times, women entrepreneurs are optimistic about business opportunities for the year ahead,” said NAWBO President, Diane L. Tomb . “This survey informs us of the challenges and opportunities facing NAWBO members as well as women business owners in general. At NAWBO we will strive to address these issues on behalf of all women entrepreneurs.”

The survey also uncovered serious challenges facing WBOs, including the need to reach new customers. Web.com and NAWBO developed the survey to better understand the state of women entrepreneurship, including: women business owners’ (WBO) motivations for starting their businesses, what business challenges they face, what and how micro- and macroeconomic factors impact their businesses, what investment plans they have for the year ahead and what public policy issues are of greatest concern.

What Keeps Women Business Owners Up at Night?
With regard to public policy matters, the top four issues on the minds of WBOs are: the state of the economy (57 percent), health insurance cost and affordability (40 percent), business tax issues (36 percent), and access to a quality workforce (36 percent). Though two in five WBOs said that health insurance costs and affordability are important issues to them, many (71 percent) feel that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) will have no impact upon the way they do business.

Financing Options to Meet Business Capital Needs
More than three quarters (78 percent) of WBOs did not seek a new or extended line of credit in the past year. Of these 78 percent, more than half (68 percent) indicated they did not want additional credit in the first place, and the others (32 percent) did not think they could get credit if they tried. Most WBOs financed their businesses through credit cards (45 percent), business earnings (40 percent), or private sources such as personal savings or contributions from family or friends (37 percent).

Who Should Become an Entrepreneur?
Survey respondents assert that women start their own businesses for a variety of reasons, including: having a vision for a business idea or a passion for solving a specific industry problem, wanting control or a more flexible work-life balance, and being in the right place at the right time. When asked the biggest motivation for starting their business, the most common answer was that they were following their vision (28 percent), followed by finding an idea that allowed them to become an entrepreneur (21 percent). The survey found that the most important traits for running a successful business are to have a passion for an idea (1st), to have a vision to succeed long-term after the business is launched (2nd) and a willingness and attitude to fail before you succeed and to take risks (3rd).

Finding New Customers through Online Investments and Social Media Marketing
When asked what they see as their biggest challenge to running their business in 2013, nearly two in five (39 percent) of WBOs said that it was gaining new customers. To gain customers, nearly three quarters (73 percent) of WBOs plan to invest more in marketing in 2013. Specifically, they will invest in social media marketing (36 percent) and search engine optimization (SEO) (36 percent). This is not surprising, as nearly half (44 percent) predict that social media and SEO are the future of small business marketing. Conversely, WBOs anticipated that traditional outreach approaches, including print and direct mail (1.6 percent), online advertising (4.4 percent) and email marketing (6.2 percent), will have less impact on small business marketing in the future.

When considering what marketing tactics currently have the greatest impact on a business’ bottom line, more than half (52 percent) of respondents indicated that website design and maintenance was very important, followed by social media marketing and SEO (38 percent) and email marketing (25 percent). And WBOs indicated that LinkedIn (27 percent) is the most valuable social media platform to them, followed by Facebook (26 percent), YouTube (18 percent) and Twitter (17 percent).

“Women business owners are laser focused on reaching new customers, and their strategy for doing so is focused on improving their businesses’ online presence,” said Web.com Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer, Roseann Duran . “This is great news for time-strapped consumers, as they can expect to have an improved and more socially engaged online experience with many of their favorite businesses in 2013.”

The State of Women-Owned Businesses Survey Infographic
For full survey results and to view and share the 2013 State of Women-Owned Businesses infographic, visit www.web.com/community.

Monday, February 11 “Ask the Experts” Tweetchat
Join Web.com’s Roseann Duran and NAWBO’s Diane L. Tomb for the 2013 State of Women-Owned Businesses tweetchat (#wgbiz #WBOchat) today to further discuss the survey findings and the issues that face WBOs today.

Methodology
The survey was conducted online within 552 NAWBO members between December 14, 2012 and January 4, 2013. For complete survey methodology, please contact Lab42 at info@lab42.com.

About Web.com
Web.com Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: WWWW) is a leading provider of online marketing for small businesses. Web.com meets the needs of small businesses anywhere along their lifecycle by offering a full range of online services and support, including domain name registration services, website design, logo design, search engine optimization, search engine marketing and local sales leads, email marketing, general contractor leads, franchise and homeowner association websites, shopping cart software, eCommerce website design and call center services. For more information on the company, please visit http://www.web.com.

About NAWBO
Founded in 1975, the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) is the unified voice of America’s more than 10 million women-owned businesses representing the fastest growing segment of the economy. NAWBO is the only dues-based organization representing the interests of all women entrepreneurs across all industries. NAWBO develops programs that help navigate women entrepreneurs thought the various stages of their business growth.

Note to Editors: Web.com is a registered trademark of Web.com Group, Inc.

Contact:
Susan Datz Edelman
Web.com (Nasdaq: WWWW)
Director, Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
(904) 680-6909
sedelman@web.com

Joy Lutes
NAWBO
Public Policy and Public Relations
703-362-0150
jlutes@nawbo.org

SOURCE:

Web.com

National Association of Women Business Owners

Categories
Financial News Information Personal Finance Retirement Savings Surveys Taxes Wealth

More U.S. Employers Likely to Add Roth Features to their Defined Contribution Plans in 2013

Aon Hewitt Survey Reveals More U.S. Employers Likely to Add Roth Features to their Defined Contribution Plans in 2013

‘Fiscal Cliff’ Provision Opens Door for Increased Roth 401(k) Adoption

LINCOLNSHIRE, Ill., Feb. 6, 2013, A new survey by Aon Hewitt, the global human resources solutions business of Aon plc (NYSE: AON), reveals an increasing number of U.S. employers are planning to add Roth features to their defined contribution (DC) plans in 2013. This comes on the heels of new legislation that makes it easier for DC investors to convert balances within their savings plan into Roth accounts.

Immediately following the passage of the American Tax Payer Relief Act of 2012—or so-called ‘fiscal cliff’ deal—Aon Hewitt conducted a pulse survey of more than 300 individuals representing large U.S. employers to determine the prevalence of Roth accounts and employers’ likely actions with respect to their plans over the next 12 months. According to Aon Hewitt’s findings, while almost half (49 percent) of respondents currently offer no Roth provisions, 29 percent of those that don’t offer Roth are very or somewhat likely to add this feature in the next 12 months. Of those new adopters, more than three-quarters (76 percent) will add both Roth contribution and in-plan conversion features.

“While employers have steadily been adopting Roth features in recent years, the new law, along with a better understanding of Roth by both participants and companies, will encourage more plan sponsors to add these options in the near-term,” said Patti Balthazor Bjork , director of Retirement Research at Aon Hewitt.

Aon Hewitt’s survey also found that employers that already have a Roth contribution option are likely to allow employees to make in-plan conversions to Roth accounts. Of those respondents that currently allow Roth contributions but do not offer in-plan conversions, more than half (53 percent) are very or somewhat likely to add this feature in the next 12 months.

For companies that already allow Roth contributions and in-plan conversions, more than three-quarters (79 percent) are very or somewhat likely to expand the eligibility for in-plan conversions, allowing them for previously non-distributable amounts.

“The new rules open the door for employers to allow expanded in-plan conversions, but it’s not a requirement,” explained Bjork. “However, it makes the Roth conversions more attractive for employees, so there will likely be increased interest and incentive for employers to offer them.”

Aon Hewitt’s retirement practice advises, designs and administers defined contribution benefits for hundreds of mid-sized and large plans. For more information visit aonhewitt.com.

Sign up for News Alerts: http://aon.mediaroom.com/index.php?s=58
Follow Aon Hewitt on Twitter @AonHewitt

About Aon Hewitt
Aon Hewitt is the global leader in human resource solutions. The company partners with organizations to solve their most complex benefits, talent and related financial challenges, and improve business performance. Aon Hewitt designs, implements, communicates and administers a wide range of human capital, retirement, investment management, health care, compensation and talent management strategies. With more than 29,000 professionals in 90 countries, Aon Hewitt makes the world a better place to work for clients and their employees. For more information on Aon Hewitt, please visit www.aonhewitt.com.

About Aon
Aon plc (NYSE: AON) is the leading global provider of risk management, insurance and reinsurance brokerage, and human resources solutions and outsourcing services. Through its more than 61,000 colleagues worldwide, Aon unites to empower results for clients in over 120 countries via innovative and effective risk and people solutions and through industry-leading global resources and technical expertise. Aon has been named repeatedly as the world’s best broker, best insurance intermediary, reinsurance intermediary, captives manager and best employee benefits consulting firm by multiple industry sources. Visit www.aon.com for more information on Aon and www.aon.com/manchesterunited to learn about Aon’s global partnership and shirt sponsorship with Manchester United.

MacKenzie Lucas , 847-442-2995, mackenzie.lucas@aonhewitt.com
Maurissa Kanter , 847-442-0952, maurissa.kanter@aonhewitt.com

SOURCE: Aon plc

Categories
Economics Market Personal Finance Real Estate Surveys

Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey: Home Ownership Is Increasingly Important to Younger Americans

Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey: Home Ownership Is Increasingly Important to Younger Americans

IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 1, 2013, Prudential Real Estate, an HSF Affiliates LLC company, today released its end-of-year Outlook Survey, which shows that Millennials and Generation X place a higher importance on and hold more favorable views toward homeownership than older generations. According to the national survey, confidence increased marginally among respondents with 73% at least somewhat confident in the recovering real estate market and property values as opposed to 72% in Q2.

Additionally, “Contemplators”, survey participants who considered but did not buy/sell a property during the past year, displayed a 10% increase in confidence over Q2 figures for both the U.S. real estate market and home prices indicating they will likely keep their eye on the market.

“Millennials and Generation X – about 85 million people strong – face a unique opportunity in U.S. housing,” said Earl Lee, chief executive officer at HSF Affiliates LLC and president of Prudential Real Estate. “They are generally optimistic about homeownership and, by nature, share a strong sense of community. As important, many were not impacted by the real estate downturn and are looking at today’s buying opportunities with keen interest.”

Key observations include:

  • Home ownership remains important to 96% of Americans with 77% of respondents ages 25-34 and 78% ages 35-44 indicating home ownership is “very important.” More so, 74% of respondents agree that with interest rates at historically low levels now is a great time to buy a home.
  • Space, safety and investment drive the reasons to own a home, with 97% respondents stating that home ownership allows for more control over living space. Tax benefits finished a distant sixth on the survey’s reasons for buying a home.
  • 63% of Americans have a favorable or somewhat favorable perception of the U.S. residential real estate market and, again, younger generations are more likely to possess a favorable opinion when compared to their older counterparts.

“We feel there are many contemplating real estate now,” said Lee. “With interest rates near historic lows and prices in many markets still well off their highs, a home remains one of the best long-term investments people will make.”

However, the survey also shows consumers remain cautious about real estate process, with 62% of respondents stating that obtaining financing is more challenging than it was pre-financial crisis. Given the dynamics and challenges of the market, 72% feel that having a trusted partner for the process is important, with younger generations being most concerned about finding reliable sources of information.

“The housing market has finally turned the corner,” said Stephen Phillips, chief operating officer for HSF Affiliates LLC. “It’s been a tough road but the momentum we are seeing across the economy and real estate market appears sustainable. Real estate agents have a real opportunity to develop new relations with a younger generation ready to invest in a home, and with others who are returning to the market thanks to improving conditions.”

The full survey details are available upon request and infographic illustrating those points is available here.

Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey Methodology

Interviews with 5,000 Americans who are “in the market” to buy or sell a home were conducted online by EdelmanBerland, between December 5-14, 2012. Respondents are aged 25-64 with a household income of at least $50,000, and either recently bought/sold a home or are considering buying/selling a home. The margin of error is +/- 1.4% for all respondents.

About Prudential Real Estate and HSF Affiliates LLC

Prudential Real Estate is a part of the HSF Affiliates LLC real estate brokerage family, which includes Real Living Real Estate and the new Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices(SM) brand available later in 2013. Prudential Real Estate franchisees are independently owned and operated. Companies are selected based upon outstanding performance records and high levels of customer service.

HSF Affiliates LLC, based in Irvine, Calif., is a joint venture of HomeServices of America and Brookfield Residential Property Services.

Prudential, the Prudential logo and the Rock symbol are service marks of Prudential Financial, Inc. and its related entities and are used under license, with no other affiliation with Prudential.

Contact:
Kevin Ostler
(949) 794-7980
kevinostler@hsfranchise.com

Alyssa Camacho
(212) 642-7732
alyssa.camacho@edelman.com

SOURCE: HSF Affiliates LLC

RELATED LINKS: http://www.prudentialrealestate.com