HR Magazine - September 2000: What's New

By Lynn Miller Sep 1, 2000
HR Magazine,   July 2000 Vol. 45, No. 9

Products & Services

| Compensation and Benefits | Legal Aids | Relocation |
​| Staffing | Training and Development | Workplace Safety |

​Compensation and Benefits

Take your stock option plan online with PruPlan, from Prudential Securities in New York and E*TRADE Business Solutions Group in Menlo Park, Calif. This web-based service offers recordkeeping, administration and execution of stock option plans to corporate clients. Executives and holders of stock options can use the online employee communications transaction platform, which includes online assistance and direct support of a Prudential Securities Financial Advisor.

Boost your recruitment and retention efforts by helping employees understand the value of stock options with, in Brookline, Mass. This web site provides information specific to stock options, such as personal financial challenges, frequently asked questions and tax issues. The site includes calculators and modeling tools specific to stock options, an online stock option trader and a discussion forum. The online options recordkeeper helps monitor stock grant details, such as vesting and expiration dates, while the “Ask the Experts” feature offers personalized responses to issues of stock compensation.

Legal Aids

Teach employees how to recognize behavior that constitutes sexual harassment and train managers in how to handle a sexual harassment complaint with two updated videos from Audio Graphics Training Systems. Sexual Harassment: Handling the Complaint is available in two versions with vignettes set in blue- and white-collar environments. Sexual Harassment: Understanding the Law is available in both management and employee editions. Both videos incorporate recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings regarding sexual harassment, such as same-sex harassment and supervisor liability.

Get your anti-drug program up and running with ORALadvantage from Avitar Inc., in Canton, Mass. This drug-testing program features educational materials for developing an in-house policy and drug-test program and an on-site oral drug-testing diagnostics kit. The fluid-based point-of-contact test detects use of marijuana, cocaine, opiates and methamphetamine. Testing does not require special collection facilities or a highly skilled administrator, and test results are available immediately.

Navigate your way through conflicting federal and state regulations regarding compliance issues through, a new web site for small and mid-sized businesses. Firstdoor’s partnership with the Bureau of National Affairs provides access to BNA’s state law summaries and other HR and benefits-related issues, such as retirement and insurance regulations. The material can be searched with key words and content may be customized for a specific organization. The Firstdoor site also provides online purchase of 401(k) plans, employee benefits plans and other HR-related products and services.


Bid out your next employee relocations through Bidyourmove, an online service from AAAmove .com. Customers estimate the moving costs and set a price they are willing to pay; then, the information is shared instantly with participating moving companies, which respond if they choose to accept the price. More than 500 moving companies are participating across the country, particularly to book return trips because movers are willing to accept lower prices for return trips where the alternative would be an empty van.


Tap into the pool of retiree consultants to fill job openings through, a new web site from Retire & Work Inc. Retirees may post job qualifications on the site, while employers may post job openings that may interest retirees on a consultant basis. Retire & Work contracts with employers for services and invoices, collects paychecks and remits the retiree a check with the appropriate deductions. The site also includes forms, list of wages for checking incomes and lists of services beneficial to retirees. á

Prescreen job candidates through, an automated, online interview system from Fitability Systems in Atlanta. This remotely administered product delivers detailed reports on job candidates based on responses to online “dialogue” questions developed for the position. A benchmark is loaded into the system for each position, which allows recruiters or hiring managers to rank the candidates and then initiate further online interviews using a web-enabled computer. No additional software installation is required.

Place your job ads online through, a web-based recruitment advertising agency and division of Sky Advertising Inc., a national recruitment advertising agency based in New York and Los Angeles. The site offers 24-hour placement capability and complete control over the look and contents of ads, along with access to a personalized online ad book. For those who want to take an active role in ad creation, AdLibs, recruitment ad writing software, is available, along with ad writing tutorials.

Contract with freelancers online at, a new site for outsourced talent. The site targets information technology, engineering and certified training industries, with additional focus on financial and management consultants, real estate agents and creative artists. For independent contractors, the site handles administrative paperwork and tax filing and provides corporate-style insurance. For employers, ZeroChaos assists with HR issues and reduces the administrative overhead and paperwork associated with hiring independent contractors.

Post your internship positions at, a new service focusing on connecting businesses with students who want internships. Potential interns post their preferred industry, company size, geographical region, skill set, GPA and past work experience on the site for free. Organizations pay a membership fee to post internship positions or review student information for recruitment purposes. In addition, the site allows businesses to create a Virtual Recruiter, which conducts searches of the student database with criteria defined by the company. The Virtual Recruiter can conduct searches on a periodic basis even when offline, and results will be emailed to clients.

Zero in on new marketing talent with the Talent Relationship Marketing Service from in Austin, Texas. The service is an electronic method designed to drive interested, qualified talent directly to the e-Recruiter-powered recruitment sections of a customer’s web sites. The e-Recruiter is used to screen and match job candidates to positions, while the service is used to create personalized, targeted e-mail sent to candidates who meet the job qualifications.

Training and Development

Put your next generation of leaders on the right track with the 2000 edition of the Successful Manager’s Handbook: Development Strategies for Today’s Managers from Personnel Decisions International of Minneapolis. The 700-page reference guide is organized around four critical leadership performance dimensions— thought leadership, results leadership, people leadership and self leadership—developed by PDI research. These dimensions are subdivided into nine core factors of leadership: communication, interpersonal, leadership, motivation and courage, self-management, strategy, judgment, business knowledge, and planning and execution. Each factor is supported by development suggestions for learning or refining the skills needed, as well as lists of books and seminars for further study.

Opt for ergonomics training over the Internet, e-mail or your own intranet through Training takes place at the employees’ workstations, where they can learn and practice ergonomically correct methods. Training covers posture and techniques, workstation adjustment, healthy computing tips, risk factors, stretching exercises and recognizing and treating discomfort. Content is personalized for each user based on their work habits, workstation equipment and job function. The program tracks each employee’s training progress, test results and feedback, which all can be captured in a secure database available only to supervisors and safety officers.

Teach your customer service representatives the skills needed to win and retain business with Winning Through Customer Service from Vital Learning of Omaha. The program includes the foundation of the current version and new options for delivery, such as a built-in “bridge” to the new Internet courses. The communication portion of the program has been strengthened to cover recognizing and adapting to different behavioral/communication styles, and the program also addresses the new way customer service is being handled to support Internet transactions and increased use of e-mail. Self-customizable and organization-specific role plays are used to reinforce the lessons.

Let them learn from the maestro with Ben Zander on Leadership and Ben Zander on Motivation, two new videos from VideoLearning Systems Inc., of Bryn Mawr, Pa. Zander, renowned conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra, shares his life principles for success, exuberance and motivation in the videos. The leadership video is designed for supervisors, managers and team leaders with a focus on key traits to develop for better leadership. The motivation video, designed for all levels of employees, is designed to increase self-motivation and confidence.

Ease your growing pains with Learn Smart for Fast Growth Companies, from Learning Solutions Alliance of Santa Clara, Calif. This series consists of five separate sets of training curricula that address the five critical areas of rapid business growth. LearnSmart Basics, the foundation for effective organizational communication, covers needs analysis, creation of customer focus, team work basics, effective interviewing and managing within the law. Segments focused on management, sales and customer service are supplemented with a “Personal Productivity” segment, which covers desktop skills, problem solving and decision making, project management and team work.

Put your trainers and students on an even eye level with the Semi-Recessed Monitor Computer Technology Desk from BioFit Engineered Products, of Waterville, Ohio. This desk is specifically designed as an ergonomic instructional computer technology workstation. It lowers the traditional placement of computer monitors to provide direct line of site between instructors and students. Strain on the wrist is minimized because the keyboard and mouse are at the same level, and the design also eliminates the need for a keyboard tray. The desk adapts to single or dual monitors.

Teach your employees the fundamentals of project management anywhere, anytime with PM BASICS, from the International Institute for Learning Inc., of New York. This interactive, multimedia training program covers the basics of project management—process-initiating, planning, executing, controlling and closing. The program offers a “case study” approach in which a realistic project is presented and students are asked to choose a specific course of action. Their responses trigger descriptions of the best choice as well as reasonable alternatives. Exercises and assessment tests are available for each knowledge area, along with a final mastery exam.

Build your next generation of senior managers with LeadersMark, from AlignMark of Orlando, Fla. This self-study training solution designed for first-time managers and supervisors with little or no formal leadership training focuses on problem solving, project management and decision making, as well as offers practical lessons in planning, budgeting and workplace employment laws. A built-in pre-assessment exercise helps identify areas of weakness, and a post-assessment tests progress or mastery. The course takes about 8 to 11 hours to complete and is divided into three modules—“Transitioning into Leadership,” “Getting Down to Business” and “Working With People.”

Workplace Safety

Browse through a range of safety products, information and training for businesses at SafetyVillage .com. This interactive web site offers more than 7,000 safety products, supplies and equipment at discounted prices. In addition, a virtual inventory tracking system provides monitoring of company usage, buying patterns and automatic cues for re-orders. Proprietary software applications build customer profiles based on such factors as industry, specific operations and number of employees and conducts analysis of the profile compared against state and federal regulations. Customers have access to printable examples of similar industry profiles. Online training and testing also is available at all times.

Get your lab ergonomically ship-shape with Applied Laboratory Ergonomics, from Humantech of Ann Arbor, Mich. The manual explains musculoskeletal disorders and includes qualitative and quantitative evaluation tools for identifying risk. The 200-page manual also includes sections on laboratory workstation design, manual material handling design and computer workstation design to guide engineers and facilities personnel in maximizing productivity and preventing injuries.

Product manufacturers and developers provide the information for What’s New. Inclusion in this sample of products does not necessarily imply endorsement by SHRM or HR Magazine.

Lynn Miller is a freelance writer and editor based in Alexandria, Va. She can be reached at


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