2014 C&B objectives and a first tool for you

Happy-new-year-2014 Hello, hello, and Happy New Year !

With 2014 already under way, I looked back at what happened in my life last year, reflected, and, as previous years, went through my trusted Your Best Year Yet process.

I’d like to share with you some of my goals for 2014 that relate to Compensation Insider and the new life I started as an independent C&B trainer and consultant in 2013.

Firsty, I want to thank you for your readership and support… and your patience as well. Last year, I did not write nearly as much on Compensation Insider as I had planned.

Life caught up : I resigned from my corporate job to set up my company in Dubai, and *that* took a lot of my time and energy.

I also faced some health challenges, cutting my finger deeply thus affecting my typing ability for a few weeks in March/April, and 6 months later, catching a very nasty bug that made me unable to work for 6 weeks. Three months on, I’m still under treatment as the after-effects are lingering, but thankfully I can now focus and work properly.

So my first goal is to come back to blogging on a regular basis, aiming for twice a week. But blogging is only one part of my HR community outreach activities :

  • I recently delivered my first ever webinar in collaboration with IIR, planning the second part in the coming month or so. (If you want access to the link to the replay, please let me know and I’ll send it to you).
  • I have developed a YouTube channel, curating great content for the Compensation & Benefits community through playlists focused on various Rewards topics… I am thinking of developing my own videos in 2014, so if you subscribe to my channel, you will receive notification when I upload this new content and when I find good content.
  • As you know, I also enjoy public speaking, and I hope to be able to share ideas and meet new people at least twice per quarter in 2014… starting on February 17th, where I am due to present at the National Conference Human Resources : Challenges and Opportunities Dubai Expo 2020, organised by TPS World Learning on February 17th at The Addresss Dubai Mall.
  • I had one article published in the very serious Compensation & Benefits Review last year, and aim to have another 2 articles published in HR magazines in 2014 – trying to contribute to publications for the HR community rather than academics this time.

Obviously, I’ll keep you informed of these activities as they go on. All this content creation is free, and will continue to be free… but I also have to make a living :-).

So what are my business plans for 2014 ?

Obviously, I’ll be looking into consulting assignments. But what really gets me excited is the opportunity to help grow the awareness about what “good” Compensation & Benefits is, and how different it is to pure admin. So, for the organisations that are interested in deeper exploring of how C&B can help embed the strategic goals of the company into daily activities and behaviours of employees, I will continue to design and deliver training programs.

I’m also working on refining my unique C&B coaching/retainer offering, for when you don’t need to hire a “big” consultancy on a large project, but still need access to expertise and a sounding board on your ideas on Total Rewards.

Eventually, I’d like to come out to you with a few new products and services throughout the year, either some that I design myself, or introducing you to offers from other providers that I deem worthy of your time and attention.

One such offer is from Cost of Living Reports.com.

They provide, well, you guessed it, COL reports for the UAE, KSA, Qatar and an overall GCC report.

The report for the UAE has existed since 2003 and their client list is impressive : Dubai DED, Australian Trade Commission, DHL Express, Emirates Group, ADCB, Zurich International Life, Novartis, Travelport, Starwood Hotels, Mediclinc, Cegelec, Ericsson AB, INSEAD, Al Futtaim, Adidas, Givaudan Suisse, Paris Gallery, Mubadala, American Univeristy of Sharjah, and many, many more.

The report is 160 pages long and covers accommodation costs by area and size over multiple years (very detailed for Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but also covering the other Emirates), education, health, transport and travel costs, household goods and utility costs (they have a multiple year comparison of food staples in the UAE), lifestyle and hospitality costs, as well as commercial property and the costs of setting up and running a business.

There is also a section with salary indications for a number of “standard” positions across the UAE.

All this for only AED 4,000 ! … and there will be a special bonus from me for those who buy before February 28 (more on this at the end of the article).

How can you use this cost of living report if you buy it ?

The most obvious use is for you as HR professionnal : the accommodation and education sections are worth the price just by themselves, to help you review your housing and education allowances and see if your objective is still met, whether it is to fully cover the costs occurred by employees, or to participate up to a certain point to these expenses. The health, transport and utility sections will also be useful for that purpose.

You can also use most of the content in your communication with candidates and new hires, to give them a fair background on what life in the UAE entails in terms of costs – this will reduce their uncertainty and help secure their agreement join your company (because you do offer decent packages, and do not try to lowball offers, right ?).

And if you are a company looking to establish or expand in the UAE, the information will prove very useful in preparing your budget and cost analysis.

Even though, to be honest, the salary section is not the most detailed or detailed you could find, the information is good enough to prepare a rough budget, especially in the case above of setting up or expanding in the UAE for the first time. It will however not help you review your salary ranges in a thorough manner. Remember that this is a cost of living report, not a detailed salary survey…

Interested ?

Find more information about the report here : http://costoflivingreports.com/cost-of-living-report-uae.php

The company offers multiple Cost of Living reports and offers discounts if you buy multiple reports :

  • UAE – AED 4,000
  • Saudi Arabia – AED 7,000
  • Qatar – AED 4,000
  • Regional GCC report – AED 9,500

I already know that some people will love this. I get emails every day asking for this kind of information. Other people won’t love it or just won’t need the information, and that’s fine too – that’s why it’s a paid product, so that those who can benefit from it will buy it, and those for whom it is not relevant for can sit it out. No problem.

And yes, if you buy, I will get a commission if you let me know you purchased the report… As I said, I also need to earn a living 🙂

So what is my special bonus for thanking you and incentivizing you to inform me you’ve bought one or more Cost of Living reports ?

I’m currently working on my first ever ebook, which I will put up for sale later on in the year. The topic is around compensation surveys and salary reviews, and I think it complements well the uses you can make of these reports. I plan to sell it for at least 200 AED.

If you send me an email (sandrine [at] compensationinsider.com) with a PDF copy of your invoice, as soon as I have finished it (please expect a few weeks), I will send you a copy of the ebook – for free, instead of paying at least 200 AED to get it from me later on. This offer is valid until February 28, so hurry and buy your report now to get my free ebook as well !

I will now close by wishing you a fantastic year in 2014. I hope we will continue our journey together here on Compensation Insider, on my YouTube channel, or, who knows, with me advising or training you and/or your colleagues.

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