J.F. Brennan Company Inc. is a 100 year-old marine construction and environmental remediation company that provides high-quality services to engineering, utility, railroad, paper mill, government, municipality, and harbor entities located throughout the inland waterways of the United States. J.F. Brennan has recently selected CRG emPerform to help monitor the performance and development of their specialized and expanding workforce.
We caught up with their Director of Human Resources, Bob Brague, and asked him a few questions:
What performance management processes did you have in place prior to selecting emPerform and what challenges did these processes pose?
Before selecting emPerform, we had used an out-of-the-box software with online capabilities. The lack of flexibility and ability to meet our feedback needs were major challenges. Additionally the reporting component was very weak and offered limited analysis of performance and succession data.
What factors contributed to making the decision to switch systems?
Our organization is going through tremendous growth and a high level of turnover due to retirements of key individuals. Conveying performance feedback during our succession process is very critical to filling these needs and in order to accomplish this, we realized we needed a better solution.
Does your industry pose any particular challenges when it comes to talent management?
We are in a very niche segment in the marine engineering and construction industry and thus rely on highly-specialized talent that isn’t readily available on the market. For these reasons, we must depend heavily on internal development and succession processes.
What was the talent management software selection process like?
The process was relatively overwhelming with so many vendors in this market. We considered 4 vendors and ultimately decided on emPerform based on the reasonable cost structure for a sophisticated product with the ultimate factors being the reporting capabilities and configurability of the software to our needs.
What challenges will emPerform help to solve in your organization?
emPerform will help us leverage the need for continuous feedback and communication to employees as we attempt to grow people effectively and to handle the growth of the organization.
Employees in general will have a real-time feel on where their performance and developmental progress is and the robust reporting package will help us identify and focus on key areas of performance that may emerge. Management will also have and easy-to-use- tool for tracking performance on a day-to-day basis and the ability to deliver performance metrics in a clean and understandable fashion to their staff.
J.F. Brennan has been in business since 1919 – Do you have any advice for other established companies who might be hesitant to change their traditional appraisal and talent management methods?
I would advise that companies always be open to improving communication between employees, managers and the organization as a whole. Most people today are able to access customized information within seconds and employees are starting to demand this type of instant information in regards to performance feedback. Therefore, a focus on finding a product that assists in the delivery of effective communication should be a strategic priority for organizations.