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Convergence 2019 Day One: Discovering the Power of Potential

Cornerstone Editors

What powers your business? This is the question Adam Miller, CEO and president of Cornerstone posed to a crowd of over 2,000 attendees to kick-off Cornerstone's 17th annual Convergence conference in San Diego. For Miller, the answer has remained the same since his very first Convergence conference nearly twenty years ago: It's "the power of potential" within every single employee. "If you tap into the power of potential amongst your own workforce, you can do amazing things," says Miller.

This is particularly important now as the fourth industrial revolution, also known as the cyber-physical revolution, is speeding up the rate of technological change to a pace never before experienced by businesses. The rapid evolution of technology has resulted in entire industries scrambling to prepare their employees with the skills they need to adapt to these changes. There are currently 6.5 million people looking for work and 7.6 million unfilled jobs in the U.S. according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But the problem, Miller explains, is that the majority of unemployed people don't have the skills required to fill open positions.

Organizations aren't going to find people with the skills they need in the job market, says Miller. Instead, companies need to look within and harness the potential of current employees, enabling them to learn and gain new skills. Unlocking the power of potential boils down to two things says Miller: 1) Managing talent to make sure people are operating effectively and 2) Creating a talent experience where employees have the tools and ability to manage their own talent journey.

Here three Cornerstone clients explain how their organizations have successfully transformed their talent experience to unlock the potential of their employees.

1) UPS Discovers Hidden Talent Amongst Its Workforce

UPS hadn't updated their enterprise-wide learning system in over twenty years when they decided to adopt Cornerstone's Learning and Performance Suites. They chose Cornerstone in order to create a more centralized talent management system across the globe and better identify skills gaps across the organization.

After implementing Cornerstone and onboarding 40,000 full-time managers as well as 35,000 part-time employees, UPS unlocked a global view of their workforce that they never had before. "It showed us that we weren't tapping into the full potential of our employees. We had a ton of college students working for us that could be used to fill full-time roles and weren't being utilized," says John Hampton, HR Systems Director at UPS.

Previously to Cornerstone, UPS found less than half of the people it promoted were people that had been identified as "ready"or "high potential." "Now the percentage of high potential employees that are promoted has moved to 80%," says Hampton.

2) The We Company Cultivates a Sense of Community During Hyper Growth

The We Company, previously known as WeWork, was founded on the idea of community as its catalyst, says Erin Straus, head of learning at The We Company. But, when the organization grew from 2,000 to 12,000 employees in just two years, it became clear that if it wanted employees to feel a sense of community and harness their full potential, they would need the help of technology to get everyone up to speed on day one. "What's unique about our company is we aren't as structured as other organizations. Most of what we do has to be quarter-by-quarter, not year-by-year due to our current rate of growth," says Straus. Using Cornerstone's Onboarding tool, the We Company was able to create personalized courses that guided employees through the onboarding process.

This got everyone up to speed quickly, but as time progressed, people wanted a learning experience that wasn't as guided, explains Straus. Forced to relaunch the learner experience, The We Company used Learner Home, Cornerstone's personalized learning experience platform, to create authentic experiences for employees and help them realize different skills over time.

"Cornerstone, helped us move from the expert mindset to the beginner mindset—everyone can learn and we need to provide those opportunities," says Straus.

3) RSM Delivers the Power of Being Understood

For RSM, an 11,000 person accounting, tax and consulting firm, unlocking the power of potential in their employees required transforming their talent experience from annual reviews to engaging in continuous conversations throughout the year. Using Cornerstone's Performance Suite, RSM created "fast feedback" to allow employees to get feedback anytime, anywhere.

"To unlock the power of potential, we needed to not only update our tools and technology but also transform our processes," says Katie Lamkin, CHRO at RSM. Using Cornerstone, RSM was able to provide employees the tools to harness their own potential and one central place to plot their entire career journey.

Check back tomorrow for more lessons from Convergence 2019!

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