Spring seems to be rushing to arrive here in New England, and everything else seems to be in a rush as well. The work is flying in the door and we are running hard. So, this episode of HRSYSK is chock full! Enjoy!

Saba acquires Halogen. The reported $293M deal is one of the smaller “big deals” in the ongoing HCM consolidation, with a stated intent of combining Saba’s L&D capabilities with Halogen’s performance management strengths. Both companies have struggled in recent years. Halogen settled a false pretexting claim with SuccessFactors in 2011, and just recorded its first-ever quarterly profit last year. Saba was taken private in 2015 by Vector Capital after it was delisted from Nasdaq and had to restate earnings. With new management and a newly combined customer base of approximately 4000, hopefully this will be a turning point for the organizations, and more importantly, a strong benefit to their users.

Injecting quality into continuous feedback. I had the pleasure of talking with Srinivas Krishnamurt, Co-Founder and CEO of Zugata recently. I’m not always a fan of solutions that claim continuous feedback, because if you’re not improving the quality of the feedback, you are just having bad conversations more often. In Zugata’s solution, reviewers comment on specific capabilities aligned to the person’s role, and comments are aggregated to help individuals understand areas of strength and development. And it keeps that information private to the employee so that they feel they can be honest about their development needs. A very interesting targeted and guided approach to continuous feedback.

What if your life and your work made friends? I also recently met the folks over at Viventium, a full suite, cloud HCM solution. They are seeking to combine a highly engaging user experience, “Ritz-Carlton” level service, and a point of view around work/life blending, not balance. The concept is compelling, as is the technology that has a unique “customization” layer on top of its cloud architecture. I’ll be taking a deeper dive into the technology soon, so stay tuned. But in the meantime, check out their blog for a taste of their point of view.

Overtime rule appeal granted more overtime. On February 22, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted the Department of Justice’s request for a second extension in its response to a Texas federal district court ruling that halted the previous administration’s rule regarding overtime for people making less than $47,476 a year. With a new administration in place that has openly opposed the rule, it is uncertain what the Department of Justice will be arguing in its appeal, now due on May 1. Either way, organizations should be preparing themselves to better track the time and activities of all of their staff, because the data is going to be essential when responding quickly to whatever changes may occur.

Scotland, puppies, and beer. Three of my favorite things, and a legitimate HR reason to talk about them. The Scottish-based brewery BrewDog has granted a week’s “paw-ternity” leave to anyone adopting a new dog. As if we needed another reason to love beer and dogs.

That’s all I’ve got for now – tune in next time for more HR stuff you should know.