Innovation, Future of Work, What We Do
We thrive on innovation and turning ideas into action. Anyone can be an inventor and an innovator.
When Roberto S. joined ADP, he never imagined how far he’d “Roll.”
He started his ADP journey by working as a Machine Learning Engineer. In May 2022, he moved from the Brazil Labs to the Innovation Lab in Roseland and was awarded the ADP 2022 Inventor of the Year.
ADP’s Inventor of the Year recognizes an associate who develops products with great features. Tech associates submit a summary of the invention to the ADP Patient Program, providing a unique solution to a challenge.
Roll is the first digital AI/ML HCM solution for small businesses, offering payroll, time and attendance, and more. Everything a small business needs for running HR & payroll in a simple chat-based mobile application. Roberto’s patents have driven Roll from an idea on a whiteboard to a real in-market offering.
“Roberto’s contributions to ADP and, specifically, Roll, has been invaluable, and how he focuses on driving technology forward and innovating to create new technology makes him so successful,” Roberto Masiero, SVP of Innovation, said. “It’s no surprise he’s been named the Inventor of the Year!”
ADP recognizes the hard work and innovative efforts that go into filing a patent application. Every inventor named on a patent application receives a monetary award for each utility and each design. Roberto was chosen based on his contributions, providing technically detailed and sound documentation.
Machine Learning in Roll
The machine learning models Roberto designed for Roll use a chat interface to interact with clients. In the process, Roberto and his team developed a variety of NLPS (Natural Language Processing) technologies for Roll in the intent classification, questioning, and answering domains.
On a weekly basis, the team meets to discuss strategic and tactical developmental ideas for Roll, including a technical paper reading session, in which they collectively brainstorm ideas to help make a better application.
“Developing technologies for Roll is a never-ending process of asking questions and learning,” Roberto said. “This is a team effort. I’m only the messenger and sometimes the guy poking everybody with links and technical articles.” On the team, he gives kudos to Guilherme G., Roberto C., Carlos N., and Juliano V.
The Team’s Patent Process
Roberto sees the patent process as a method to transform ideas into a formal document that will increase ADP’s innovative power on the market. “There is always a great team working behind the scenes to help engineers describe a solution and ensure this initial description will make it to a patent, with all the legal aspects covered,” Roberto said.
As the Inventor of the Year, Roberto encourages other inventors to keep in touch with the patent team to understand the process and give their ideas a try.
Advice for Technologists
“My career journey has been a remarkable, fun 5-year ride at ADP,” Roberto said. “If you’re considering a tech career, I’d encourage you to apply to ADP because this is where you can bring your ideas forward, receive feedback, and try new things.”
Transformation is at the heart of what makes ADP unique. With innovation rooted in our values, ADP continues to provide opportunities such as our patent program, showcasing ideas from associates at all levels.
“It is always important to ask yourself how the idea will benefit ADP,” Roberto said. “Keep your minds open and study new areas and domains. Sometimes the innovation happens in the intersection of domains of expertise!”
#MachineLearning #MachineLearning #HCM #Technologists #Roll #Inventor
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Innovation, Tech Trends, Career Insights
As a leader in the industry that collects a wide range of data from employees, we ensure the information is safe with us.
Say you met a technologist at a hackathon and want to connect with the person more. Instead of exchanging business cards like before, you’ll likely pull out your phone and exchange information digitally.
From LinkedIn profiles, Instagram usernames, hometown, and family relationships to mentions in articles from years ago, the internet and digital world do not erase one’s footprints in most cases.
With all information and data becoming digitalized in the 21st century, it’s time to utilize them in a way that’s never been done before. Data is not just your social media photo or where you went for vacation; it can be numbers and confidential information from financial to hospital records.
We recently had the opportunity to speak with Xiaojing W., our Distinguished Engineer who advocates for data privacy and user-respectful interactions. She shared with us some ways she keeps applications safe and secured at ADP.
Why Data Privacy is important
By Xiaojing W., Distinguished Engineer
On September 7, 2017, a consumer credit reporting agency announced that it had breached the data of approximately 143 million U.S. consumers, including customers’ names, dates of birth, social security, driver’s license, and credit card numbers. These incidents resulted in a loss of consumer trust, therefore, future business opportunities.
ADP takes pride in building applications that put customers’ privacy first with holistic security and privacy practices. In fact, our Chief Data Officer developed a holistic privacy framework instilling the privacy culture and centrally managing the practices in daily data operations.
Here are some of our methods:
When it comes to creating a trusting experience for users, we have five best practices to share:
With over 1M clients (about the population of Delaware in the United States), ADP pays more than 38M workers worldwide (about the population of California in the United States), and just in the US alone, we reach nearly 20% of the private US workforce.
As a leader in the industry that collects a wide range of data from employees, we make sure the information is safe with us. At the same time, we pay attention to the design process, ensuring a safe, user-friendly experience for everyone involved.
Here are five design patterns for creating user-respectful and privacy-aware interactions:
Tech Trend: All about Data
Data is always changing, which means more people want ways to keep their information private. This has led to the development of new techniques that preserve user information in large datasets.
Here are four types of technologies that are getting attention in the industry:
You may ask, how does the new landscape in data privacy change our product design thinking?
To better understand our clients and the needs of their employees, we must have a comprehensive view of who they are (i.e., profile data) and what they do, and how that impacts their day-to-day (i.e. behavior).
By following HBR‘s new data privacy rules, our products will empower users with trustworthy technology solutions.
Our private permissioned blockchain also safeguards highly sensitive personal data while simultaneously allowing individuals complete control. This innovative technology enables ADP to craft new products and services that benefit employees and clients.
Data privacy isn’t the Privacy Officers’ job; it’s a collective responsibility. As engineers who are often tasked with the technical aspects of securing sensitive data, we must understand the landscape of privacy-enhancing tools and technologies.
Keep in mind that we must stay up to date with the changes in the data industry as our users trust us with their information. Taking care of the trust and protecting the data should be everyone’s top priority.
#Data #DataPrivacy #WomeninStem #Automation #UserExperience
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When faced with decisions to make — no matter the topic or implication — it’s human nature to seek data. We all want information to help us make the right choice, to prove our assumptions, to validate the courses of action we’re about to take. In business, data is driving important decisions in marketing, operations, logistics and other essential business functions. We’ve seen that the insights drawn from data can provide a reliable path to better outcomes.
But data about people has perhaps never been valued like it is today. People data is propelling better assessments about the workforce and the global economy. From hiring to compensation to promotion and everything in between, each data point reveals a truth that can help business leaders and human capital management (HCM) professionals make better choices when it comes to their workforce. Collectively, such data-driven decisioning can unlock the doors to a more diverse, equitable and inclusive world of work.
With the technological tools we have today, we can mine and use real-time data to track important HR metrics, but more importantly, we can proactively help solve HR issues like turnover and retention. Through aggregated and anonymized real-time data, we can start to see trends emerge and even predict the likelihood. Data detailing how long people stay at a job, how much they earn and how often they get promoted can help businesses get a clearer picture of where they stand against the backdrop of the global economy. For example, analyzing their people data enabled one company to discover the reasons for involuntary turnover in their organization. Using these insights, they changed processes, procedures, and policies, which resulted in a 20% reduction in turnover.
Benchmarking data – knowing what other businesses in your industry or geography are paying – can also mean the difference between attracting talent to your organization or losing them to a competitor. Today’s labor marketplace has more jobs than candidates and is in constant flux. Companies need to know how they compare to others on compensation, benefits, and other key employment factors. In this environment, having up-to-date HR intelligence is crucial.
There’s no question that having access to this level of detail in your people data can help make your organization more competitive in the talent marketplace. But perhaps more importantly, this transparency into your people analytics can help you identify gaps in representation and equity and take meaningful steps to close them. There’s a need in society to continue to push forward with creating an inclusive environment for everybody, and the first way to advance that goal is by measuring progress. If you can’t measure progress, then you can’t adequately assess whether you’re making improvements to people’s situations.
Examining a critical DEI challenge, let’s consider pay equity. At the end of the day, there’s nothing more important than making sure that people are paid correctly and fairly for their contributions. In the past, it’s been difficult to accurately assess differences in compensation. We’ve known for some time about gender pay inequities but they’re often too high-level for companies to tangibly action against. The resulting discussions around the root of the issue and how to fix it also become too high-level in response. This doesn’t help leaders and HR professionals who want to reduce pay inequity in their organizations. By analyzing internal HR data and then comparing it to benchmarks across industry, demographic, geography, function and job titles, companies can now pinpoint where their organization is missing the mark.
One misconception is that hiring people at a better rate of pay will help close the gap. If you bring people in, you’re not actually creating upward mobility inside of the organization. By examining compensation across a wide range of job titles and companies and evaluating what it really means for somebody to move up, organizations can better understand where they might need to adjust course.
Pay transparency is another important and often forgotten element to closing pay gaps. Data can empower and giving employees more information about the pay of their colleagues and for similar roles in their industries can help workers across underrepresented groups gain negotiating leverage.
Data can help organizations resolve these inequities proactively, resulting in higher employee retention and better talent acquisition. Data helps you see around corners and acts as a flashlight into dark places on your path forward. We can use data to identify when people aren’t paid to the level that they should be paid. We can create tools to plan and budget to adjust for those pay gaps. Ultimately, the goal is to turn real-time data into actionable insights and workplace solutions that help businesses and people thrive. By February 2022, 75% of clients using the solution have shown improvement in pay equity, making a $1.1B impact on communities in the US.
It’s important for organizations to reflect on what’s visible within their people analytics, looking for the context and connections that create uneven effects. When patterns emerge, examine what happened earlier to understand potential causes and tailor proposed solutions. When it comes to creating a better, more equitable world of work, focus on removing barriers to progress and building programs and policies into your workplace culture that allow your employees to show up as their best selves. By using data to channel your efforts, you can effect meaningful change and become part of the benchmark that challenges others to follow suit.
Why ADP, Tech Trends, Career Insights
From Tech Trends, Women in STEM, and Career Advice, to Award Stories, we will continue sharing stories with the community.
2022 IN REVIEW – Top Ten Blogs from Innovation to Leadership
Cybersecurity, hybrid work, and diversity – business is changing.
We started the year with a video on workforce trends, sharing that 75% of the global workforce changed how or where they live. Workers who trust their team and leaders are seven times more likely to be strongly connected. With a new year ahead, we continue building a transformed workplace, designing for everyone. Here’s a video on ADP leaders sharing insights about our DE&I strategies and how to lead with inclusive language.
Top Ten Blogs of the Year
1) Looking for an Internship or First Job? Here’s the secret to getting hired
What do I do if an internship requires a specific degree? What if the job required two years of relevant experience and I only have 1.5 years?
Liz Gelb-O’Connor, Global Head of Employer Brand & Marketing, shares hiring stories and qualities recruiters look for in top candidates!
2) How Al/ML are Driving Innovation and Opportunities at ADP
The blog is tailored for technologists interested in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML).
“The future of learning will involve more personalization and customization based on learning styles, competencies, and preferences.”
Hear about the future of Human Capital Management Software and AI applications in the real world from Julio Hartmann, Vice President and General Manager of ADP Brazil Labs.
3) Career Journey from a Filmmaker to a Conversational Designer (CxD)
What does storytelling mean? Meet Azfar R. as he shares his inspiration and career journey from a filmmaker to a conversational designer.
“For anyone who wants to work as a conversation designer, the first step would be to understand how human-computer interactions (HCI) work.”
4) Team APIs: What They Are and Why They Matter to Teamwork
We live in a world where people always look for the next best thing.
Regarding leadership, we know that if you’re engaged with your team, they will be engaged too, which translates into a lack of passion and excitement in the products they create!
Charles explores various team management methodologies in this blog, including four different team types and three interacting models.
5) The Five Key Elements of a Product Champion
Is coding a requirement for working in tech? I come from a non-tech background. Is there a role for me at ADP Tech?
“One of the most critical tasks in product management is to track the team’s steps and measure if they will lead to the desired objectives and outcomes.”
Read the five key elements in product management and search for your next move!
6) Devi R., Senior Director of DevOps, Builds Products with Empathy
“STEM, to me, is beyond degree and credentials. It’s about applying and leveraging engineering knowledge and empathy toward every product.”
How does Day in Life look for the Senior Director, DevOps? What is a piece of advice for young technologists?
Meet Devi R., a technologist who enjoys exploring the world and inspiring others. She joined ADP in 2020, building the ADP’s flagship MyADP with her team in Global Products & Technology.
7) Life @ ADP S2EP4: Let’s Talk #ADPTech
Have you subscribed to Life@ADP? Click the play button and grab a drink.
The episode is great for associates and applicants interested in the scale ADP operates at, including the leadership teams’ strategies and their focus on data security.
Lohit Sarma, a Senior Vice President of Product Development, spoke about various areas in #ADPTech, from User Experience (UX), Security Engineering, to Site Reliability Engineering.
Life @ ADP is available on iTunes, Spotify, Google, iHeartRadio, and Amazon Music.
8) 2022 Workforce Trends – Future of Work
We identified the top trends reshaping the future of work:
Rewatch the workforce trends in 2022 here. For more insights, subscribe to the tech blog and receive monthly newsletters.
We were proud to celebrate Pride Month in June by featuring Taylor, the Information Security Project Manager, and her story of how she has always been met with kindness here at ADP.
“Everyone who celebrates love has a role in our community and this movement. Whether it is Women’s month, Pride month, or every month over, under, or in between our personal lives and our professional lives, every moment matters. You matter.”
10) APIs vs. Web Service: What’s the Difference?
We live in a digital age where almost everything is done through an API or Web Service. Have you ever wondered about the differences? What’s the future of using API standards?
We spoke to Leslie E., Senior Director of Application Development, and she shared her take on integrations for our Human Capital Management (HCM) products.
We’d like to thank our associates across the globe for contributing! From Tech Trends, Women in STEM, and Career Advice, to Award Stories, we will continue sharing stories with the community.
Don’t forget to subscribe to our tech blog and receive monthly newsletters!
Learn more about what it’s like working for ADP here and our current openings.
Voice of Our People, Career Journey, Women in STEM
Click the play button below to hear from Elaina.
“Changing careers can be scary, but it was the best thing I ever did for myself. Don’t underestimate your potential!”
Criminal Minds, CSI, Mindhunter, you name it.
For those who love true crime documentaries and podcasts, you must be familiar with the role of forensic scientist – the person in a white coat analyzing evidence as the detective rushes into the lab to verify if the fingerprints match.
Meet Elaina K., a former Forensic Scientist who took a turn in her career and landed a role at ADP.
Q: Elaina, you worked as a forensic scientist before coming to ADP. How did the journey begin?
A: I worked as a forensic scientist for more than seven years. While the forensics industry is growing in the United Kingdom, it is still very niche compared to other sectors. I reached a point where I pursued everything from analytical skills to leadership experience.
Q: Many are curious about what forensic scientists do. What type of cases have you worked on previously?
A: A part of my daily routine was to analyze and research. My team pieced evidence and helped detectives on closing cases. I remember analyzing 250 kg (about 551.16 lb) of cocaine and heroin in one case!
Q: Wow! How would you describe the turning point from forensic science to working in tech?
A: Growing up, I was always interested in technology. Tracing back to my early teen years, I developed an interest in science and pursued chemistry, biology, and physics. I knew it was time for a new change. In 2016, I saw the opportunity to work as a Technical Services Manager at ADP, and I applied immediately.
Q: Incredible. It’s been six years since you started. Why do you stay?
A: The short answer is I stay for the people. I am now the Manager of Major Incident Response, providing leadership for over 900 applications, products, and services. I wake up every day knowing what I want to deliver at work. The support I receive from my family and the ADP community is beyond imagination. I am proud to work for a company that values diversity in associates’ backgrounds and cultures.
Q: That’s powerful. What does diversity mean to you and your team?
A: As a people leader of color and a female, I value the differences and invite my team to celebrate each other’s achievements in their career journeys. I also encourage my team to mark cultural holidays on their calendars.
Q: As a people leader, what message would you like to highlight?
A: Great emotional awareness of people’s feelings and excellent interpersonal skills are required. This is especially true in management. My team now comprises six associates in the US, one in the UK, one in France, one in Brazil, and three in India. Empowering and valuing every voice is the key. If associates can’t be themselves, how can managers bring the best out of them? As a leader, I ensure they can lean on me for support and guidance.
Q: What are some overlapping qualities between working as a scientist and working as a technical manager?
A: That’s a good question. First is attention to detail. As the team creates products and services, paying attention to every detail is essential as it could impact the result for both clients and associates. The second overlapping area is people management skills. I always take time to understand my team and identify when they need support.
Q: What are some of the rewarding moments?
A: I found my sense of purpose in working and helping both associates and clients at ADP. Without it, I wouldn’t have had the strength to achieve my personal goal, which I’m proud to share – I am now a homeowner!
Q: That’s amazing! Thank you for sharing. What does #ADPTech mean to you?
A: #ADPTech is innovative and cutting-edge. I love how there are always events across Business Resource Groups (BRG) supporting associates across the globe. The culture and people make me look forward to having more diverse conversations with technologists from different industries.
Q: What tech roles do you partner with?
A: So many! From Developers, SREs, SROs, Analysts, Infrastructure engineers and teams, QA Testers, VPs, Product Owners, and Application Support to Tech support teams. We partner with every ADP location from California to Melbourne.
Q: What can incoming associates expect from ADP?
A: I value career progression, and ADP provides the environment for personal growth, including resources and benefit programs. Be prepared to work with teams both in and outside of your country. Supporting one another will keep you motivated and engaged at the time!
Q: Lastly, what is one advice for technologists from a non-traditional background?
A: I am not a developer nor a coder, but I work in tech. There are roles with great opportunities that require interpersonal skills and working with people.
If you are an applicant from a non-traditional tech background, review job descriptions carefully and don’t be afraid of the titles. An opportunity to showcase skills and talents during an interview is always helpful in landing the right role!
As people slowly return to work, Elaina is excited to meet her virtual team in the future and get to know them better outside of work. She also enjoys baking every month and making chocolate cupcakes for her family and friends.
AnitaB.org Named ADP the Top Large Company for Women Technologists
ADP’s iWIN Business Resource Group sponsored GirlHacks 2022 Hackathon
The Five Key Elements of a Product Champion
Click here to search for your next move, and visit Who We Hire.
#WomeninSTEM #DE&I #Leadership #Technologists #ForensicScience
Early Talent, Impact, Women in STEM
Celebrate National STEM/STEAM Day with ADP
ADP is a place with opportunities to grow, from supporting young talents to providing resources for women technologists.
According to Microsoft’s study in partnership with KRC research, young girls lose interest in STEM as they get older. However, the study found 63% of middle school girls who know women in STEM feel powerful doing STEM. By connecting and building their confidence in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), we can make a difference in our future workforce.
By hosting STEM events, increasing the number of STEM mentors, and building an inclusive environment, we can all take part in encouraging young talents to develop their interests in the field.
Supporting Young Talents
With a commitment to growing opportunities for women in STEM, ADP’s International Women’s Inclusion Network (iWIN) Business Resource Group (BRG) was proud to offer insight and guidance to new technologists, even before the young talents begin their careers.
ADP just participated in the amazing and successful GirlHacks 2022 Hackathon. Aini Ali, Vice President of Major Accounts Operations and member of ADP’s International Women’s Network Business Resource Group (BRG), had this to say about it, “The iWIN BRG was proud to sponsor the event that aligned closely with our mission to provide tools and a network for women and children of all ages,” Aini said.
This year’s GirlHacks, a 36-hour women-centric hackathon, featured motivational speakers, discussion panels, and mentoring programs created to inspire women and support advanced career growth. ADP iWIN BRG would like to thank the EMPOWER committee and members who generously donated their time to engage with the students. We encourage you to learn about the fantastic opportunities for collaboration and partnership our BRGs offer.
Internship: Let Talents Shine
With core values of inspiring innovation and social responsibility, team leaders and associates are constantly promoting the GPT Development programs, summer internship positions, and work opportunities across ADP. We take pride in providing resources and connecting with next-generation talents.
Nina P., a Data Science intern, met with her mentors weekly during her two-month internship at ADP. She utilized the 30-minute sessions to discuss project progress and personal growth.
“I love connecting with people both in and outside meetings. Everyone was there to share ideas and brainstorm together,” Nina said. “When I return to school, I’d encourage future interns to ask questions and reach out to as many people as possible from day one.”
Nina described her two-month data science team experience as innovative, with hands-on opportunities. She was assigned to work on projects that led her to learn new technologies. Nina also widened her area of interest in tech as she dived into using Natural Language Processing (NLP) which was not her focus of study at school.
At the end of her internship, the Data Science team was pleased to offer Nina a full-time position. “I am so happy to have accepted the position as a Data Scientist at ADP following my graduation from Georgia Institute of Technology,” Nina said. “I am thrilled to be surrounded by such a brilliant group of innovators starting in December!”
Women in Tech Scholarships
ADP sponsors scholarships to encourage women to pursue tech careers through the Women in Tech (WIT) organization, promoting STEM opportunities for young talents.
In June, ADP was a VIP sponsor of 2022 Women in Technology (WIT) Connect, one of Atlanta’s most engaging and interactive events for science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM), with over 700 top-level executives and leaders attending. This event was about giving back and supporting the development of young girls and women in STEAM. The event highlighted the WIT Girls, Campus, and Single Mothers in STEAM, awarding scholarships to the WIT Girls and WIT Campus students.
Jimmy Adams, Senior Vice President of Global Product & Technology, and Melanie Shook, Vice President/General Manager of Small Businesses Services, presented the scholarship of $15,000 to Rian T., a student in Information Technology at Georgia Gwinnett College. Rian, the WIT Campus Scholarship third place winner, would be using the scholarship to fund her studies.
As the Executive Sponsor for WIT, Melanie shared her journey helping with the WIT scholarships to her recent appointment on the WIT Advisory board.
“STEAM careers have always been part of my DNA. As an industrial engineer out of college, I made it my mission to promote the advancement of these fields and did so individually,” Melanie said.
Fast forward 20+ years later, she connected with WIT and was immediately drawn to the organization and empowering girls and women in STEAM. In addition to WIT, ADP is a National Club partner for Girls Who Code, and a sponsor for the Grace Hopper Celebration.
“I’m proud to work for a company that encourages leaders to drive an increasing presence for women in STEAM,” Jimmy said. “It’s been great watching the Atlanta WIT events and community grow over the past years.”
ADP also celebrated the current and future female leaders in tech at another WIT Awards ceremony in October. The awards included Girl of The Year, Campus of The Year, and Women of The Year, along with a WIT Build Her Up award for an individual who championed women in their networks, workplaces, and communities.
“The mission remains the same, and I can’t wait to meet the girls at the WIT Campus Next Level Up Mentorship Program closing event in Alpharetta,” Melanie said. “I’m excited to see what the future holds in our partnership.”
For the Campus Club of the Year award, we presented $5,000 to Georgia Gwinnett College as the top college campus across Georgia, recognizing their sponsorship with companies for workshops, competitions, mentorship, and internship placement.
“Providing opportunities for women in technology will enable a more diverse workforce for ADP and all technology companies in the future,” Jimmy said. “There is a lot of momentum with our WIT partnerships, and the future looks bright!”
The Future: Support Women Technologists
Women make up more than 50 percent of our workforce at ADP, and we continue encouraging them to celebrate each other’s achievements to build an inclusive culture here.
“I am passionate about ADP’s commitment to support WIT and other programs,” Manjula G., Senior Director of Product Development, said. “The opportunities allow us to foster a workplace that attracts, engages, and retains the top tech talents, building reliable and innovative HCM solutions for our clients, partners, and associates.”
Initiatives such as supporting talents and building business resource groups for women technologists have also helped ADP earn recognition from different organizations.
We are named one of the Top Companies for Women Technologists Winner for the third year by AnitaB.org. Further reading: Meet ADP Women Technologists who spoke at Grace Hopper Celebration 2022.
Celebrate National STEM Day with us! Consider volunteering, joining mentorship programs, and giving back to the communities.
#NationalSTEM/STEAMDay #GHC22 #ADPTech #WomeninSTEM #YoungTalents
Interested in a tech career at ADP?
Click here to search for your next move, and visit Who We Hire.
JOBS & UNEMPLOYMENT
Bridging the Talent Gap With Data-Driven Technology
OCT 20, 2022 1:53PM EDT
You Could Grow Your Money Without the Stress of Stocks
By Don Weinstein, Corporate Vice President of Global Product and Technology at ADP
With their priorities shifted by the pandemic, today’s workforce wants more from their employers, including greater flexibility, better work-life integration and a heightened focus on diversity, equity and inclusion – and they are willing to make a change to get what they want. We’ve seen more workers re-evaluating their place of employment, with seven in 10 workers saying they’ve considered a career move in the past year. Despite anecdotes to the contrary, we remain in a tight labor market, and the best way to get in front of the ongoing hiring challenge is to start by holding onto your experienced workers. By leveraging new data-driven technologies to create engaging work environments, today’s business leaders can confidently bridge the talent gap and create a more engaged workforce.
In this age of the employee, it is critical HR leaders continually assess their employment brand to find ways to improve the worker experience. Is your workplace environment truly inclusive? Are you giving employees challenging work that leverages their strengths? Are you taking care of their health and welfare needs? Leaders need to ask themselves these questions, while deploying data-driven HR technologies that can help identify the right solutions. For example, personalized worker surveys can help employers better understand their workplace culture and predict potential retention challenges. Another important tool is skills mapping, which breaks down jobs into a set of inter-related skills, enabling employers to mine internal applicants for potential fits as well as career development opportunities. The same technology can also assist your external recruiting function, by broadening potential talent pools to look at all relevant candidates, including those from non-traditional backgrounds.
The evolution of HR tech accelerated when our ways of working were upended a couple years ago. But these changes have kept the industry dynamic and ignited new innovations. As we look to the future, we see a lot of promise in these areas of HR tech:
AI and machine learning for sourcing talent in hard-to-fill jobs: Algorithms are being deployed to find novel talent pools to source candidates through skills matching and retargeting. These algorithms also play a bigger role in upskilling tomorrow’s workforce, providing insights on skills-based learning and career pathing that can help guide and advance employees’ careers.
Technology-driven advancements for building more diverse and inclusive workforces: Skills matching can help uncover capable candidates from non-traditional backgrounds. Sentiment analysis can be used to assess employee perceptions on the overall level of inclusiveness in the workplace. And machine learning can help identify and correct workplace equity gaps.
Of course, these approaches will be effective only if companies remain agile during times of change. Leaders need to ensure that the right systems are in place to optimize their teams’ ability to deliver good work and to adapt as the environment shifts. Essentially, businesses need technology designed for how work gets done, so they can more easily adjust at the pace of change.
You can hear more about these emerging HR technology trends, what’s to come and how to stay agile in my Nasdaq TradeTalks interview below:
Women in STEM, Voice of Our People, Innovation
‘¡Bienvenidos! ¡Pase, Adelante!’ – Welcome, come on in! Feeling connected and belonging allows us to feel comfortable and bring our authentic selves.
ADP is proud to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month (NHHM) by recognizing the cultures and the histories Hispanic Americans contributed through generations in this country.
This year’s theme is Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation, which means making positive impacts together. We connected with Isabel Espina, Vice President of Product Development, WorkMarket. She’s a dog-lover, a traveler, and a leader who always focuses on paying it forward.
Here’s her lens on giving back to the community.
Moving Forward, Welcoming & Connecting: A Leader’s Journey
By Isabel Espina, VP of Product Development
Adelante, in Spanish, means to move forward. It is also commonly used to welcome someone into your place. ‘¡Bienvenidos! ¡Pase, Adelante!’ – Welcome, come on in! Latinos value family as a source of strength and protection. Welcoming others and making them feel at home is part of our DNA. The sense of family and belonging is intense and is not limited to the immediate family but the extended grandparents, cousins, friends, and friends of friends.
These families very often extend to our work families. Feeling connected and belonging allows us to feel comfortable and bring our authentic selves to the experience. ‘Estás en familia’– you are part of the family. You are safe, and we have your back. These values were core to my experience growing up.
I was born in Cuba during the height of the Castro Revolution. My parents were the first from their respective families to leave, seeking freedom of expression and opportunity. They left their homeland and family for a better life in the United States. They wanted their daughter to grow up with freedom and opportunities.
We arrived in Spain in December, a time of year meant to be joyous and surrounded by family. Instead, we were alone in a foreign country. Fortunately, we had kind neighbors who welcomed us into their homes, helped us with warm clothes, and invited us to ring in the New Year. They even showed up on January 6 (Feast of the Epiphany) with a small gift that ‘Los Reyes’ had left in their home for ‘Isa.’ This kind gesture from our Spaniard neighbors meant the world to my parents. We were not alone. We had support and felt a sense of belonging. The sense of inclusion gave us tremendous comfort.
This connection quickly grew into a community that gave us insight into navigating employment in Spain. Although we were not Spaniards, we connected to our neighbors through language, ancestry, and family values. With the help of the newly established community, we thrived in Spain and prepared ourselves for the next leg of the journey to the US.
The values ingrained in the Spanish culture of family, support, and solidarity translate directly to how we lead organizations.
ADP’s Research Institute has studied the data and developed a measure of Inclusion Measuring the ‘I’ in D-E-I. They define connection as one’s feeling of being seen, feeling heard, and feeling valued for their uniqueness. The study found that strongly connected people are 75x more likely to be fully engaged at work.
It’s been 25 years since I first came to ADP. Key to the culture here is the sense of inclusion, which is why I stay. I joined to create innovative products, and I did. Every time I hear there are millions of users now with the ADP Mobile Solutions app, I think of the days when I brought it to life with my previous team. Although the app has evolved beyond what we did, I find it rewarding to hear how much people love it today.
The more comfortable one feels with the team, the better the ideas flow. The creativity and excitement then lead to an amazing product. We must attract a workforce representative of our clients and the communities where we live and work. These communities allow us to understand and provide insights into building better products.
One way to gain a sense of community is to join and attend events sponsored by a Business Resource Group (BRG). I am an active member of Adelante, a Hispanic community that allows us to connect based on shared values. These may be direct connections because you are Latin American/Spanish or have shared interests in the music, the food, and the culture. What matters is we can come together and share in a community. I can’t think of a better way to grow one’s professional network and learn.
In the course of my time with Adelante, they invited me to do a panel to support STEM women and mentor young students. I also recently attended the Grace Hopper Celebration, where I met wonderful women technologists from diverse backgrounds working together to support each other. It was an extremely rewarding experience! I’m reminded of that sense of inclusion I felt when my family first came to the US. I’m inspired to give back to my support network.
As a technology leader, I always think about attracting great talent in this highly competitive environment. Digital transformation and advanced technologies continue to shape current and future jobs across industries. I encourage my team to grow together, meet other associates across different communities, and always support one another.
Giving back to our communities is good for not only our business but for all of us. I invite you to explore ADP and all we offer, including our BRGs. Be a role model, grow professionally, and pay it ‘Adelante.’
We look forward to continuing sharing stories from Latino and Spanish technologists.
Interested in Product Development?
Learn more about what it’s like working for ADP here and our current openings.
#nationalhispanicheritagemonth #givingback #careerjourney #productdevelopment #ADPTech
Welcome to PeopleTech, the podcast of the HCM Technology Report. I’m Mark Feffer.
My guest today is Bob Lockett, chief diversity and talent officer at ADP. He’s responsible for the company’s diversity and talent strategy and oversees performance management, leadership development, engagement and culture, among other things.
We’re going to talk a lot about data and its relationship with DEI, from helping determine where a company’s at, to initiating new programs. That’s on this edition of PeopleTech. Bob, welcome. It’s great to meet you.
How does one attack the task of leading on diversity for a company the size of ADP?
Well, Mark, the first thing I’ll tell you, it’s a very challenging task, because you have so many different constituents and everybody wants their own piece of the pie. What about us? What about us? What about us?
As you can imagine, DEI is a very emotional topic, for that reason. So, the approach that I’ve taken, that we’ve taken at ADP, is really tied to doing a couple of things.
Number one is using the scientific method. You know that thing, Mark, that we learned about back in middle school, that many of us did those experiments?
You would say, develop your hypothesis. Then from the hypothesis, you allow data to prove or disprove your beliefs. And then once you do that, then you really define the problem.
After you define that problem, then start to put plans in place to achieve the outcomes. You tweak as you go, as needed, based on feedback.
So what we’ve done is taking that exact approach and say, let’s take the emotion out of it as best we can. Let’s focus on the data. Let the data be our guiding light, to help us understand where we need to focus and what we need to do.
Now, this doesn’t just apply from a US standpoint. Think about it. This is a global opportunity that we’ve embarked upon. The way I view it is, there are needs everywhere, for people to feel like they are seen, valued and heard for all that they are.
So, not only do we think about diversity… You can measure diversity very easily. You can look at demographic data. How many of these do you have? How many of those do you have?
You can measure equity by looking at pay, but the key is also to measure inclusion. So, we take this holistic approach, all data driven.
The inclusion piece is all sentiment driven, but it’s really leveraging the scientific method and leveraging data, to help tell our story.
Can you expand a bit on how data is used in DEI work? I mean, you mentioned that this is a pretty emotional subject. It always strikes me as interesting when you apply data to an emotional subject. How do they work together? So can you talk about that?
Sure. I could tell you the stories of how we landed where we are, with some of our things.
The first thing that we did as an organization, when I took over the role, I wanted to understand how we looked, because I have a vision that our associate population in our company is reflective of the communities in which we operate and the clients that we serve. That’s very specific and very clear.
How do you test that, your hypothesis about that? How do you make it a realistic vision?
We looked at about three or four different datasets. One dataset was a census data. And as you know, the census data doesn’t mean that everybody’s working.
So, we looked at the census data and we say, “What’s the representation for African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, white women, everybody in our organization?” Let’s lay that out to understand it.
Then we looked at the Bureau of Labor statistics data. Of the people in the workforce, let’s take a look at how that compares and then let’s compare that against our information.
So, we compared it against our information, I’m talking specifically in the US and said, “Huh? Where do we have gaps?”
My hypothesis was that we didn’t look like the communities in America, but the reality of it was, we did. So, I was really impressed. I was like, wow, this is great news.
But as you look at the data, we also found that when you look up in the organization, you don’t have parity in representation for two populations in particular, which were African Americans and Hispanics.
We said, they represent 15% of the overall workforce in the US, for Hispanics. Let’s say it was 11% for African Americans.
Well, we noticed a gap in our company of about four percentage points each way, for African Americans and Hispanics.
We said, well, we should close that gap, because as you come to an organization, you also want to be able to see if there are opportunities for you to advance.
If you don’t see anyone that looks like you, in management level positions, then you start to wonder if you have a real future there. So, that was our quest.
This is how we use data to really understand and tell our story and to put plans in place to do it.
Now, notice the nuance here. Because again, if you go back to my original hypothesis, that we didn’t look like that, we did, but then we pivoted very quickly, because the data told us a different story. We said, that’s where we’re going to focus our efforts.
Now, some people use, Mark, data to try and boil the ocean. You can’t do everything. You can’t be all things to all people. That is a recipe for failure, particularly in DEI.
So, that’s why we have a very narrow focused approach. We have multiple initiatives that we work on, but suffice it to say, that was our main effort, for us to be able to say, we’re moving the needle when it comes to leadership representation in our company.
Now, do you think your company is an outlier in that, or do you think that more corporations are starting to get on board with the idea of using data in this regard?
Yeah. I think it’s a mixed bag, Mark, is probably the best way to describe it. Most organizations will take a look at their data. They’ll focus on where they think their opportunities are.
But it depends on where they are in their journey, their DEI journey, which I always talk about, that not everybody’s at the same place.
For us, I believe we’re an outlier. We’re an outlier because if you think about DEI, it’s one of our values. The things that really resonate in our organization, is that each person counts. In order for each person counts, by default, you have to have a DEI strategy.
Some organizations don’t put as much interest or effort into it, so there at varying stages.
It became a great corporate buzzword two years ago. Prior to that, many organizations weren’t making headway, with respect to that. So, my belief is, we’re certainly an outlier with our use of data.
Of course, Mark, that is our middle name. So, we use data to make sure that we can tell our story, to solve the problem, to understand all of those things. We’re all about measuring success. How do you measure the effectiveness of what you’re doing?
Having said that, I think we’re a bit of an outlier. I think there are other organizations that are doing great things, but I think there are some that are not doing anything because they don’t know where to start.
If that’s the challenge for them, then a great place to start is, understand your data at least. Then, think about where you want to have an impact.
Can you think of any particularly surprising things that you’ve learned from data?
I can give you a couple of examples of things that I think we’ve learned. Number one is that it’s never enough. Here’s what I mean. We had to put plans in place to do this.
I’ll just give you this example, Mark. We launched our talent task force. It was a specific focus on the African American and Hispanics/Latino community.
Well, as soon as we put that out, the first question that came was, hey, what about the Asian community? I said, “Huh? I’ve got a story for you. Asians represent 5% of our population, but yet they represent 8% of leadership.” So, there’s no problem there.
Then the next call came from the LGBTQ+ community. I said, “Huh? Tell me what the data says.”
The reason we couldn’t make a decision and put a plan in place to improve representation for that community, is because we didn’t have any data. So, that’s one of the things that will surprise you about that.
And when you don’t have enough of it, everyone wants to do these things, which is back to my point about, people get involved in this. They want to represent their constituents.
But at the same time, without the data, you can’t get involved and create corporate programs to improve something.
The second piece still ties to self-ID. If you take this to a global scale, so typically in numerous countries, they don’t collect the same data that we do in the US. They don’t collect it because their philosophies are different. It could vary, country to country.
However, there’s renewed emphasis on understanding your workforce and being inclusive. So, just imagine, you’re a multinational corporation and you don’t understand the dynamics that exist in operating in Tunisia or the dynamics that exist in operating in France or Italy and who the underrepresented groups are. So, we’re trying to capture new data.
That’s one of the surprising things, is that we’re beginning a journey globally, to do a self-ID approach.
It’s not just us, by the way. There are multiple companies now showing renewed interest in this, to say, how do we understand our workforce? How do we become more inclusive, so we can appeal to the needs of various communities where we operate?
Are you satisfied with the kind of data that’s available to you today? What could be better?
Yeah. I’m in a unique position, Mark. I tell people this all the time. At ADP, because we’re a data company… again, it’s in our middle name, I have the unique opportunity that we have our own department that does all of the analytics, pulls the data, does the comparative analysis, the sensitivity analysis to whatever we want to do.
Now, for companies that don’t have that, we do have a diversity dashboard, that gives them insights into their own information, that they may not have thought about before.
They may not have the luxury of having a large DEI department, like we do. They may not have the luxury of having the analytic capability, but we can provide them with some insights about how their organization looks, what their leadership makeup is. Oh, by the way, with pay equity too, we can take a look at that data as well.
So I think I’m in an enviable position. I’ve got all the data that I need. The key for me, is staying focused and executing, to ensure that we make a difference with our DEI efforts.
What are your overall goals for your DEI efforts? I mean, what kind of changes are you hoping to enable or enact? What has to happen for you to be able to get there?
Yeah, it’s a great question, Mark. I’ll go back to my vision. The vision that, we want our associate population to be reflective of the communities in which we operate and the clients that we serve.
That is the most important thing, because I believe that the efforts that we take to do that, will have a great cyclical impact on the environment.
Here’s what I mean. I’m not in the DEI business because I’m a social justice warrior. I’m in the DEI business because I believe that there are economic opportunities in a capitalistic society, that we can get everyone to participate in and grow the pie. I firmly believe that.
In many cases, it starts with employment. So, what do we do as part of our DEI, some of the work that we’re doing? Well, we want to hire in those various communities.
We have outreach efforts to every community, to make sure that we’re attracting the best and the brightest for our organization.
Then of course, once you get there, you have to walk the talk. So, culture is really important, Mark, in this space, to ensure that if you said you’re going to do it, then you have to do it.
My saying is, don’t talk about it. You have to be about it. So, if you’re about what you said you are, by bringing everybody together and giving everybody an opportunity, so they can be their true authentic selves, then that makes a tremendous difference.
So, that’s the talent piece of it. Getting them in, giving them the opportunities to grow and develop, and then seeing them get promoted and being able to contribute.
Now, I also talk about DEI from a business practice standpoint. Oftentimes in the past, organizations that I’ve worked for, DEI was all about some of the HR practices, which I just talked about briefly. It was all about talent practices,
But I also incorporate business practices. Business practices are really about, well, how do we tap into the ecosystem of businesses and communities?
Oftentimes, you have underserved communities, that don’t have the same opportunities to understand things.
Give you an example. We have a company that we partner with. What the founder shared with us, was the fact that for many minority-owned businesses, they only have one way to finance their business. That’s through loans from family members or debt.
So, they don’t get the full spectrum of how to do revenue-based financing for their business, or how to think about the debt market very differently, that others have had exposure and access to.
So, giving them exposure and access to the full gamut is really important, but that also requires some education. So, we partner with organizations, to do that, just so businesses can finance it.
Now, selfishly, because I am a capitalist, I believe that we should be able to capture some of that market.
We should be able to say, we’ll help them. There’s no guarantee that they’re going to come back and nor is there an expectation, but just imagine if we’re the ones that help them understand how to run payroll.
I said, “We want you to focus on your business. If you make pizzas or if you have a restaurant, we want you to focus on what you do best. Let us do what we do best, which is run payroll, help you do time and attendance and help you with all of those other things. That’s what we do”
So, I think it’s important for us to extend our reach into the underserved communities, such that we can help raise the tide for all boats. That’s really the impetus here.
Say, if we do this the right way, DEI becomes much more holistic, so it’s focused on the economic empowerment.
If you do that by getting people great jobs, what do they do? Well, they go spend money in their communities. If they spend money in their communities, businesses grow. And if businesses grow, for us it’s a great thing, because that means you have more people to pay from your payroll systems and the like.
So, this ecosystem approach that I think is really critical and important, when we think about DEI.
Now, the other piece, Mark, that I’ll share with you about DEI is, I’ll share two other avenues of this.
One is the environment. Our environmental practices now, have become relevant in the DEI equation.
Let me back up and give you the broader view. Most companies talk about ESG, environmental, social and governance. The environmental piece is really critical. That’s where you have, what are you going to do for greenhouse gas emission reduction?
This S is all DEI. The G is board governance or governance of whatever programs that you take a look at. So, that’s something else you have to consider as you think about DEI.
We have practices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The good news for us is that, we don’t manufacture anything. Probably, our facilities and employees driving to work are our largest contributors to this. But what we also focus on is, what can we do to meet target? We put together plans to do that.
The last thing I’ll mention is what we’re doing as an organization, to make a difference, as we think about DEI and the like.
We have the ADP Foundation. We make contributions to a variety of 501(c)(3)’s nonprofits, to help support them in the communities in which they operate. So, there’s this holistic view that we have about, we can do well and do good at the same time.
Bob, thanks very much. We appreciate your time today.
My guest today has been Bob Lockett, chief diversity and talent officer at ADP. This has been PeopleTech, the podcast of the HCM Technology Report.
We’re a publication recruiting daily. We’re also a part of the Evergreen Podcasts. To see all of their programs, visit www.EvergreenPodcasts.com.
To keep up with HR technology, visit the HCM Technology Report every day. We’re the most trusted source of news in the HR tech industry. Find us at www.HCMTechnologyReport.com. I’m Mark Feffer.
Voice of Our People, Career Insights, What We Do
“At ADP, the doors to learning are always open. We work and win as one. All it takes is one’s curiosity to learn.”
My Career Journey: Learn and Grow Together at ADP
Viplove S. is a Senior Architect responsible for Architecture, Standards, Governance, and Talent Management, supporting products for National Accounts Services clients in Hyderabad, India. To him, happiness means spending time with family, giving his best at work, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Outside of technology, Viplove enjoys exercising, singing, dancing, reading, and writing stories. He once walked the entire Manhattan Island length, around 18 miles!
Coming to ADP
Since I stepped into the Information Technology (IT) industry, ADP has been one organization I was always curious about. What appealed to me the most was ADP’s strong focus on people. After fifteen years of working with multiple service organizations, I decided to knock on the door I had walked by all these years. An opportunity to learn about a new industry and its leading products was too exciting for me to pass.
I joined ADP a little over two and a half years ago. As I look back at my enriching journey, two contributory factors stand out: People and Learning. Without People, there would not have been much learning. I have worked with many amazing people in my career, but here at ADP, every day gives me reasons to thank a fellow associate. Whether developers, testers, Site Reliability Engineers (SRE) members, managers, architects, or senior leaders, I am grateful for learning with them every day.
My Career Journey
I initially started as part of the Global Enterprise Technologies & Solutions (GETS) department, which supports IT operations for ADP. The teams I work with are responsible for developing and maintaining 50+ applications used by ADP associates and 100+ integrations among internal ADP systems and external vendors. It is easily one of the most complex systems I have ever worked with, and my job was to transform it digitally. I was fortunate to have people around me who were not only knowledgeable but also extremely helpful.
Two years ago, my team and I moved to the Global Product & Technology (GPT) business unit as part of the Product Development organization that supports large national accounts. For me, this move opened a world of opportunities. My manager helped me seize one of those opportunities. He challenged me to reach beyond my scope of work and help another team. Sometimes, saying “yes” is all it takes.
And it did. That “yes” triggered a domino effect for me. That door opened another, and I worked with multiple product teams across ADP. Because of that, I am proud that my journey has led me to become a Chief Architect for our GPT National Account Services team in India. In this role, I’m responsible for the architecture and quality of ADP’s top products in HR, Payroll, Time, and Talent for our largest clients.
Architect Mentorship Program
Another part of my new responsibilities is helping other associates grow. We recently kicked off an Architect Mentorship program for my business unit, the National Account Services Architect Academy (NASAA). As a part of this program, we shortlisted 11 talented associates who have demonstrated excellence in their projects and aspire to be architects. Each of the mentees is assigned a mentor who is currently in an architect role within the organization. The mentorship is multi-fold:
1) The mentees go through a hand-picked Udemy curriculum that covers the fundamentals of being an architect, the various technologies that support our products, and the soft skills essential for the architect role.
2) Mentee and mentor connect weekly. The mentor guides the mentee on their learning, shares real-world experiences, helps solve problems, provides feedback, and more.
3) The Academy meets monthly where a senior Architect Leader (from outside the business unit) shares their career journey with the mentees and how they solved large-scale business problems.
4) The program culminates with the mentees picking a real-world business problem, working on architectural artifacts to solve it, and presenting their work to senior leaders.
Mentees graduate from the Academy in a grand ceremony. After graduation, they are assigned architectural responsibilities within their projects as on-the-job training. The idea is to produce well-equipped architects through this program within one year. Having benefited hugely from my mentors and colleagues, I am excited and committed to the mentorship program’s success.
Designing for People
ADP has taken giant leaps in its transformation into a Technology company. One of the things that makes it possible is our commitment to people. Domains and technologies are out there for anyone to learn. But the 59,000+ ADPers helping 920K+ clients in more than 140 countries give our company the foundation to stand tall among its competitors. Our network is strong and built on core values, including “Each Person Counts” and “Integrity is Everything.”
Supporting & Learning Culture
At ADP, the doors to learning are always open. If you are curious, nothing can stop you. What makes ADP stand out from the other organizations I have worked with is our culture of “learning and growing together.” Despite being a multi-national company, we don’t have boundaries separating us.
Our excitement and cooperation are the same whether speaking to an associate in India, the U.S., or Europe. We work and win as one. If I need information or to learn something, I can reach out to anyone, whether I’ve worked with them before or not. All it takes is a quick ping on our collaboration platform. We are all connected! All it takes is one’s curiosity to learn.
I’m endlessly excited and curious about our vast HCM industry and all the exciting technologies we use as part of our products. Between that and my ever-helpful colleagues, I keep learning.
ADP Tech, Hyderabad, Integration Architecture, Mentorship, Career Growth