HRPA survey reveals that inclusiveness of all cultures key at this time of year
TORONTO, Nov. 9, 2011 /CNW/ - Many Canadian organizations continue to
face tough budget considerations and holiday celebrations may be a
casualty at some workplaces this year. A new survey commissioned by the
Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) reveals that nearly
four-in-ten (39 per cent) of respondents aren't having a party this
year. But of those who typically do have a celebration, half (56 per
cent) said they would be understanding if they found out that spending
for this year's office holiday party was being scaled back or cancelled
altogether due to economic concerns.
"Whether this year has been good or bad for your organization, the
holidays are a key time for recognizing hard work and thanking
employees for a job well done," said Claude Balthazard, vice president,
regulatory affairs and registrar, HRPA. "But that doesn't necessarily
have to come in the form of a lavish party. It's the thought that
Quebecers are most likely to continue the time-honoured office party
tradition, with two-thirds of respondents (64 per cent) indicating they
are having one this year, compared to a lower likelihood of workplace
parties in Ontario, Alberta and the Atlantic region (56, 50, and 47 per
Younger Workers Say - Don't Mess with the Holiday Party
But not everyone is quite as understanding if cutbacks are in the
One-in-five (19 per cent) said they would be disappointed—a holiday
party is a tradition and something everyone looks forward to
year-round. Those under the age of 24 are more likely to be let down.
Four per cent of respondents would be angry—perhaps the boss should take
a pay cut instead.
HR Professional - A Not-so-Secret Santa
The holiday party may not be in jeopardy if you have an HR professional
at your workplace. According to a Pulse Survey of HR professionals
polled by HRPA and the Canadian HR Reporter, only six per cent of HR respondents said they weren't expecting a
party this year. The majority of HR professionals (81 per cent) believe
that a holiday celebration is important to the morale of an
organization and four-in-ten (43 per cent) would be disappointed if the
party was scaled back or cancelled back due to cost cutting.
"HR plays a significant role in the morale of the organization and a
holiday party is one way to strengthen the team dynamics," says
Balthazard. "If your organization isn't able to have a party this year,
perhaps you could consider planning something that is less costly which
would still engage employees. Be clear about the reasons why the
company is not holding a party and ask for their feedback/involvement
The most popular tips from HR professionals for hosting in tough
economic times include:
Shop around for less expensive venues and entertainment. Instead of a
sit-down dinner with a live band, consider a cocktail reception with a
Get creative with your office space and host your party on company
premises. Onsite events cut down on travel and rental costs.
Downsize your guest list by inviting employees only. Staff-only
functions are a great way for employees that don't typically work
together to meet each other.
Bring the Workplace Together - Inclusiveness during the Holidays
Beyond just company morale, eight-in-ten (79 per cent) believe that HR
plays a significant role in ensuring inclusiveness in the workplace
Two thirds (64 per cent) agree that holiday celebrations should be more
inclusive; however three-in-ten (31 per cent) of workplaces are already
acknowledging holidays from different cultures/faiths.
Nearly half (47 per cent) of organization's holiday celebrations have
changed to be more inclusive over the past 10 years.
The top three tips from HR professionals for how workplaces can be more
inclusive as part of holiday celebrations:
Decorate the office in a winter theme instead of specific holiday décor.
Throw a snowflake party—host a holiday party that celebrates the winter
Open a cultural dialogue, inviting employees from different
cultures/faiths to discuss how they celebrate the holiday season.
"A holiday party doesn't have to be jingle bells and eggnog. As the
Canadian workplace changes in both its cultural and economic make-up
and how holidays are celebrated, the festivities can morph to meet all
budgets and all cultures," says Balthazard. "HR professionals believe
that holiday parties have a place in today's organizations to build
company morale, and shape a larger discussion around inclusiveness in
About the Surveys
The Omnibus survey results are based on a telephone survey of 892
Canadians employed by an employer between October 6 and October 16,
2011, by Harris/Decima, using teleVox, their telephone omnibus. A
sample of this size will provide results that can be considered
accurate within plus or minus 3.3 per cent, 19 times out of 20.
The Pulse Survey was conducted in October by the Human Resources
Professionals Association (HRPA) in partnership with Canadian HR
Reporter through an online poll of nearly 650 HR professionals from
across Canada. Commentary on the report can be viewed at: www.hrreporter.com/articleview?&articleid=11630&headline=holiday-parties-should-be-more-inclusive-survey.
About the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA)
The Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) is Canada's HR
thought leader with more than 19,000 members in 28 chapters across
Ontario. It connects its membership to an unmatched range of HR
information resources, events, professional development and networking
opportunities and annually hosts the world's second largest HR
conference. In Ontario, HRPA issues the Certified Human Resources
Professional (CHRP) designation, the national standard for excellence
in human resources management and the Senior Human Resources
Professional (SHRP) designation, reserved for high-impact HR leaders. www.hrpa.ca
SOURCE Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario
For further information:
Duff McCutcheon, Communications Specialist