The top HR stories of 2010

A look at the 10 most-viewed stories on Canadian HR Reporter’s website

By Todd Humber (todd.humber@thomsonreuters.com)

Every January, as the calendar turns, the editorial staff of Canadian HR Reporter take time to peruse the pages of the past year to pick out the top stories for the annual “year in review” feature.

South Korean fortuneteller Kim Yong-son poses with his crystal ball in his Seoul office. An article forecasting the top hiring trends for the year was the most popular article on Canadian HR Reporter's website in 2010. (Photo: Lee Jae-won/Reuters)

It’s a fascinating exercise — flipping through a year’s worth of news coverage. You’ll have to wait until the Jan. 17 issue lands on your desk for that feature. But, in the meantime, here’s a list of the top 10 most-viewed articles on Canadian HR Reporter’s website, http://www.hrreporter.com, for 2010.

Number 1 – 7 hiring trends for 2010

HR professionals liked to dust off the crystal ball last year, as the article outlining the seven major hiring trends for the year was the most popular article for 2010. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=7599

Number 2 – ‘Status update’: You’re fired

In November, readers flocked to a story about the firing of two employees of a Mazda dealership in B.C. In that case, two workers were fired — and the dismissal was upheld by a labour relations board — for extreme anti-management postings on Facebook. Comments included: “If somebody mentally attacks you, and you stab him in the face 14 or 16 times… that constitutes self-defence doesn’t it ????” Other status updates included a posting of the “top five kills” from TV’s vigilante killer on Dexter and open-name calling (“HE’S A COMPLETE JACK-ASS…not just Half-a-Tard”). See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=8574

 Number 3 – CHRP exam writers increase 50 per cent

Articles on the Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP) designation often draw a crowd. This article — which looked at the spike in people writing the exam in advance of the degree requirement — was no exception. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=8115

 Number 4 – Employers and gen Y have different skills expectations: Survey

Employers and young people have different expectations around what is the most important skills for new graduates to possess, which means generation Y could have a hard time meeting employers’ needs, according to a survey. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=8246

Number 5 – Ontario passes workplace violence legislation

This story was actually posted in December 2009, but it still generated enough traffic in 2010 to crack the top five. Bill 168, Ontario’s workplace violence and harassment law, was on the of the most significant workplace stories for 2010. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=7427

Number 6 – It pays to have HR designation

A survey conducted by Payscale, sponsored by the Human Resources Professionals Association, found people with the CHRP designation are more likely to progress faster in their careers and land higher-paying gigs. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=7704

Number 7 – Mississauga hazing ‘unacceptable’: HR director

HR professionals across the country felt for their counterparts at the City of Mississauga, Ont. A media frenzy erupted when a cellphone video of city employees duct-taped together on a table while other employees threw water balloons at them was leaked to the CBC — about two weeks before Ontario’s new workplace violence and harassment legislation came into effect on June 15. We talked to their director of HR about how they handled the incident. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=8044

Number 8 – Criminal charges laid in worker’s death

Criminal charges for health and safety violations made headlines throughout the year. In this case, police laid criminal charges following a 10-month long investigation into the death of a city worker who was fatally injured on the job in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=7599

Number 9 – Unlimited paid vacation? Some firms trying it

When this story first came up in the newsroom, we knew we had to jump on it. The idea of unlimited paid vacation sounds like a panacea for workers and a nightmare for employers. How does it work? Is it really practical? Would workers ever show up? We talked to one Canadian firm giving it a go to find out how it worked. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=8469

Number 10 – Moving from managing to coaching

Rounding out the top 10 was one of our Executive Series features, a partnership with the Strategic Capability Network where we take a look at pressing issues for senior HR executives. This timely feature came out just before the Vancouver Winter Olympics, and featured Peter Jensen, CEO of Performance Coaching. Jensen worked extensively with Canadian athletes in getting them mentally prepared for the Olympics, and the results paid off in spades. Canada won more golds (14) than any other host country in the history of the Winter Olympics. See http://www.hrreporter.com/ArticleView.aspx?l=1&articleid=7497

Todd Humber is managing editor of Canadian HR Reporter, the national journal of human resources management. For more information, visit www.hrreporter.com.

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