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Cornell HR Review

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The Cornell HR Review is a graduate student organization whose primary purpose is to publish a body of human resources (HR) scholarship. It is published periodically throughout the year and is available exclusively online. The volunteer staff comprises professional and doctoral students at both the ILR School and the S.C. Johnson Graduate School of Management, with student editors making all editorial and organizational decisions. The organization is formally registered with Cornell University as an independent organization.

All articles within this series are copyright © by the Cornell HR Review, and are reproduced here by special permission.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 10 of 97
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    The NLRB’s Social Media Guidelines a Lose-Lose: Why the NLRB’s Stance on Social Media Fails to Fully Address Employer’s Concerns and Dilutes Employee Protections
    Schlag, Chris (2013-12-05)
    [Excerpt] The expanding use of both personal and professional social media sites has resulted in its growing impact in the workplace. Recently, many examples have emerged where an individual’s use of social media for communicating frustrations or sharing personal information resulted in significant conflict between the individual and their employer. Employment actions arising from an employee’s social media use have become so contentious that a number of employers have been charged with unfair labor practices for overly broad social media policies or implementation of unfair policies. Following several important Board decisions the NLRB issued guidelines, identifying acceptable employer-initiated social media policies. As social media’s popularity will likely only continue to grow, it is important to understand how employer policies impact employees’ social media use and the potential invasion these policies may have on employees’ rights. This article concludes that the NLRB’s issued guidance fails to adequately address social media concerns raised by employers and dilutes employees’ rights to communicate workplace concerns. This is because even though the guidance permits employer developed social media policies, the NLRB’s stance permits employers to monitor and analyze employees’ social media use and does not clarify when an employer can act on social media information.
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    Where’s the Remote? Face Time, Remote Work, and Implications for Performance Management
    Calvo, Alec J. (2013-08-18)
    [Excerpt] Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer’s ban on telecommuting and the subsequent uproar over that decision highlights the need for a deeper understanding of the impact of remote work. Although it would prove comforting to assert that the peer-reviewed findings of the social and managerial sciences are in accord as to the benefits of telework in the face of the discord among organizational leaders, the reality is that little such agreement exists. Consequently, the proponents of remote work in management and HR are given little support in defense of such potentially large-scale initiatives or interventions. To that end, what follows is a discussion of the relative merits of remote work, as compared to the traditional conception of work, and an exploration of the practical implications for HR practitioners in performance management and employee evaluation.
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    Workplace Violence: Why Every State Must Adopt a Comprehensive Workplace Violence Prevention Law
    Haynes, Mark I. (2013-04-13)
    [Excerpt] On August 24, 2012, a fired clothing designer gunned down a former co-worker outside the Empire State Building in New York City. The violent act was the culmination of built up tension between two former co-workers. Their anger towards one another had already resulted in at least one physical confrontation at work that led to both men filing police reports against each other. This case is an extreme example of workplace violence; however, workplace violence takes many forms and occurs with great regularity. Nearly 2 million employees are victims of workplace violence annually. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (“OSH Act”) is not well-enforced and therefore fails to provide protection to employees subjected to workplace violence. This article explores what can be done to better protect workers at the state level. Part I of this article reviews the phenomenon of workplace violence. Part II discusses the lack of enforcement of the OSH Act as it relates to workplace violence. Part III of this article describes how some states choose to supplement the OSH Act with their own workplace violence laws. Finally, Part IV proposes that state legislatures should adopt a law in line with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) promulgated suggestions to provide legal protections for workers against workplace violence. Since Congress has yet to enact federal legislation that provides comprehensive workplace violence prevention, all states must enact legislation beyond the OSH Act to protect their workers.
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    The Future of Human Resources: A Shift to a Network Driven Approach
    Kwan, Winnie (2013-01-04)
    [Excerpt] As companies continue to thrive in a global context, the nature of work and organizational relationships will grow increasingly complex. Initiatives will span across traditional functional and geographical boundaries, heightening the need for greater knowledge sharing and collaboration. With a higher premium placed on achieving flexibility and agility, organizations that rely on strong internal networks have been more successful at coordinating efficiency and innovation. From a talent management perspective, organizations will need to adopt a more network-centric approach to foster leadership effectiveness within this new context. Just as the human resources arena has recently evolved from an individual-focused, personnel-service mindset to a team-oriented framework, the next decade may require human capital strategies to further shift to a network-driven mentality.
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    Hiring and Firing the Mentally and Psychiatrically Disabled: Advice for HR Professionals
    Vroman, Margaret (2013-09-16)
    [Excerpt] According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), an estimated 26.2 percent of Americans aged eighteen and older suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. Contrary to what most people assume, mental disorders are the leading cause of disability in both the U.S. and Canada. Thus, the effect of mental disorders on the American workplace is significant. In an effort to ensure that physically and mentally disabled persons were not discriminated against in employment situations Congress passed the Americans with Disability Act (ADA). Persons entitled to its protection include those with physical disabilities and mental disorders such as anxiety disorder, depression, manic depressive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, and other psychological disorders. Almost immediately courts began interpreting the statute to make it difficult for those with disabilities, especially psychiatric disabilities, to prevail in cases claiming discrimination under the Act. As a result, Congress passed the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA) in 2008 with the express intent that courts should expand the definition of disabled individuals entitled to accommodation. In this article I will discuss the ramifications of the 2008 amendments on human resource professionals who are tasked with following its mandates when interviewing job applicants and managing employees who allege, or are suspected of having, a psychiatric disability.
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    The Benefits of Corporately Funded Childcare
    Soluk, Andrew (2015-11-02)
    [Excerpt] If there is a lack of qualified workers to fill openings, the problem lies in the pipeline. Although it is possible to retrain employees and potential candidates to have the necessary skills that a business requires, this can often be costly and cumbersome. To reliably find workers who are qualified for any job, companies will need to start earlier in the education system. And by early, I mean preschool. America is one of the few advanced industrialized countries in the world that does not have subsidized, government funded, or widely available child care for working parents. This creates a strain on families who often struggle to care for a child when both parents are working.
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    A Comparative Analysis of the Uses of Mediation in the Entertainment Industry
    Ostrander, Tim (2013-03-03)
    [Excerpt] This paper will provide a broad, and by no means exhaustive, overview of some of the unique ways that mediation is, or could be, used in some of the principal fields of entertainment while, identifying the similarities among them and also noting how they differ. The primary focus will be on film, television, and commercial theater and how mediation has been or could be used in situations specific to these disciplines.
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    Sieving Through the Data to Find the Person: HR’s Imperative for Balancing Big Data with People Centricity
    Lipkin, John (2015-09-04)
    [Excerpt] With “big data” and “analytics” atop human resources (HR) professionals’ dictionaries, it is no wonder that some are calling it time to think of employees as data points and to scientifically make people decisions. These beget horrific images of what many employees already believe HR promotes: incessant change and downsizing solely for profit maximization. Yet, for HR to genuinely transition into the world of data-driven people solutions, it must leverage its roots in employee advocacy, understanding, and development. To best do this, HR must undertake three actions. First, HR can ease into people analytics, using the necessary time and effort to gain employee buy-in. Second, HR should stress the objectivity of data-driven decision making. Third, HR practitioners must exhibit empathy for those affected by such decisions.
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    People and Technology: Reflections from the 2016 Human Capital Association Symposium
    Cornell HR Review Editorial Board Members (2016-10-29)
    [Excerpt] From time to time, the Cornell HR Review staff contributes summaries of HR-related events that take place on the Cornell University campus in Ithaca, NY. The intent is to disseminate the content of these events to the wider HR community of practitioners and researchers. In September 2016, the Human Capital Association (HCA) hosted its 14th Annual Symposium. HCA is a student-run organization within the Samuel Curtis Johnson School of Management and the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University. The HCA strives to drive the future of the HR profession through education and professional development opportunities across the Cornell community. Its annual symposium provides a forum for students, faculty, and corporate executives to come together and explore the various human capital issues prevalent in global business.
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    The Front Lines: Employer Provided Paid Parental Leave in the United States
    Clark, Daniela (2017-06-22)
    [Excerpt] Parental leave has largely remained undiscussed in the United States since the late 1980s to early 1990s. The enactment of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, which gave parents twelve weeks of unpaid parental leave, seemed to satiate scholarly writers. Encouragingly, the topic of parental leave has had a resurgence within the last election cycle. This article discusses the advances that employers are making to privately provide paid parental leave to their employees, the impact that makes on the employees, and explores the possibility of expanding the Family and Medical Leave Act to a paid parental leave policy. The United States has historically lagged behind other countries when it comes to parental leave policies, considering other countries began creating parental leave policies in the 1940s and 1950s after World War II. The United States continues to lag behind, as it is the only developed country that relies entirely on the private sector to provide paid parental leave.