Our Publications

People and organization in M&A due diligence

Whitepaper from 1. February 2024

While there has been a slowdown in the number and value of M&A deals in recent years, looking forward, we expect a ramp-up in market consolidation. Selling business units that are in distress, gaining access to new markets and customer groups, securing supply chains, and planning suc-cession in family businesses are all expected to be key drivers for M&A in 2024. Two critical, yet often neglected aspects of the due diligence process are the people and organiza-tion. Even though these are not initially a focus of the financial and legal transaction, in many cases they are the true gatekeepers of value creation for the overall merger and integration. Find out in this paper, why the success of M&A deals depends largely on people and organization dimensions.

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An efficient organization acts beyond mere cost-cutting

Whitepaper from 17. January 2024

Efficiency is a key value driver for long-term value maximization. Economic and geopolitical challenges force organizations to question their current business practices and adapt where needed to achieve their objectives as efficiently as possible. The common approach of reducing costs by 10-30% across the board seldom has a long-term impact. Organizations can be seen addressing the bottom line and focusing purely on visible costs. However, frequent experience in our customer engagements show that long-lasting efficiencies are found when organizational adaptations go beyond low-level cost improvements. Find out in this paper how you can achieve increased efficiency beyond a mere focus on cost reductions.

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7 features of outstanding recruiters

Whitepaper from 2. February 2022

Recruiting is probably the most visible and recognized HR process across companies. It’s the gateway into and first point of contact between organizations and future employees. Companies put great effort into continuously improving methods and tools to make recruiters’ work more efficient and effective. Yet, many recruiting teams remain trapped between unsatisfied hiring managers, unhappy candidates and rising pressure. We have put together seven essential features with which outstanding recruiters can meet both the expectations of applicants and the needs of hiring managers.

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AI – Leadership in the Age of Technologically Assisted Decision-Making

Study from 25. January 2022

In cooperation with ada, we collected data for our annual Kienbaum study on the topic of “Leadership in the age of technologically assisted decision-making”. The aim was to find out how relevant technologies such as artificial intelligence or quantum computing are for companies, how they alter decision-making in organizations, and what implications they have for people, organizations, and society. The study is based on a mixed-methods approach and was scientifically accompanied by the Kienbaum Institute @ ISM. To begin with, qualitative interviews were conducted, based on the results of which an extensive, quantitative survey was conducted. Request the study report for free now.

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Quo vadis, German Mittelstand?

Study from 17. June 2021

How do current macroeconomic developments influence German SMEs? Is their commitment to internationality still undaunted? What are the driving forces behind future international business endeavors? For our study "Quo vadis, German Mittelstand?", we have surveyed 312 executives of SMEs from a diverse range of industries. Find out how companies reacted to COVID-19 on an international level, which differences there are between small and large SMEs, and which steps are crucial for future activities abroad.

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Future Workplace

Whitepaper from 11. February 2021

The world in which we are working is constantly changing. But what does that mean for our everyday work? To what extent do digitization and remote work have an impact on the core elements of office work? Is it all new or simply the old hiding under the cloak of the new? In our whitepaper “Future Workplace” we give an outlook on the architecture of the digital working world of the future and answer the question: What is actually changing?

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Remote Leadership and the Lack of Feedback – Ideas for Action

from 2. February 2021

Nearly a year ago the Corona pandemic fundamentally upended the way we collaborate in organizations. According to a survey, the main factor that makes virtual collaboration difficult for leaders is a lack of feedback from employees regarding their leadership practices. For our whitepaper, we have joined forces with HRDigital and provide recommendations for the development of leaders in the era of remote leadership.

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Ambidextrous Leadership: A Role Concept

Study from 21. July 2020

The question whether there is a universally applicable best leadership style arises again and again – but "it depends". Thus, we have developed a role concept for ambidextrous leadership and validated it with the help of a survey of 266 managers in the context of our new study. The model describes which leadership roles are especially effective in which context and explains how you can strengthen them.

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Status Now: Managing the New

Whitepaper from 25. June 2020

The COVID-19 shutdown has challenged companies to rethink and adapt their working environments. However, with the gradual return to the daily work routine it becomes clear that going back to the previous status is not possible. Therefore, we have identified five fields of action that are relevant in the “Status Now” for companies to reboot successfully after the crisis.

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Executive Search in Times of Corona

Whitepaper from 29. April 2020

Executive Search processes during a pandemic – is this impossible? How are HR decision-makers dealing with the situation of being unable to carry out their usual recruiting plans due to personal contact restrictions? For the Kienbaum short study "Executive Search in Times of Corona", more than 700 participants were interviewed to show the opportunities and limits of digital tools as well as possible future developments in Executive Search.

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HR Strategy and Organization in Public Organizations

Study from 29. January 2019

Digital transformation is currently the most urgent challenge faced by public organizations, especially in their HR areas. Despite this situation, competencies and resources to implement digitalization measures are (still) in short supply in many public organizations. The present study clarifies this situation.

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Findings on the maturity level of the HR function in agile transformation

Study from 18. December 2018

Kienbaum and DGFP have used a framework model for the agile HR function to determine the current maturity level of HR and personnel management in the context of its agile transformation. In a survey between HR personnel from 118 companies in Germany, strengths and development needs regarding agile HR methods, organizational structures and control instruments, work forms, competencies, leadership concepts and behaviors as well as digital technologies within the HR function and personnel development were identified.

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The Future of the Workplace in the Digital Revolution

Study from 19. November 2018

The Kienbaum Institute @ ISM and the online job platform Stepstone interviewed 13,500 employees and executives from the business world in a study on the future of the workplace. The results of the second part of our study shows that: When it comes to flexibility, organizational structure or satisfaction, executives sometimes experience their daily work completely differently from employees. This is the second part of the study in our series publications.

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2018 Graduate Survey: Have You Found a Job or Are You Still Looking ?

Study from 14. June 2018

The Graduate Study 2018 not only evaluates the current results, but also includes a comparative analysis of the last three years of the survey, which shows clear trends and characteristics of Generation Y. The survey took place as part of the graduate congress in Cologne and comprised 119 graduates from universities.

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Six Months Duty to Provide Information According to the Remuneration Transparency Act

Study from 5. June 2018

The Remuneration Transparency Act is on everyone's lips. Since it came into force half a year ago, a right to information has been in effect in Germany in order to ensure more gender equality in salaries among employees. Kienbaum asked employers in Germany again about the current state of affairs after our December 2017 study "Are you ready for the Remuneration Transparency Act?" had a good resonance.

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Study of Chief Digital Officers 2017/2018

Study from 28. February 2018

Kienbaum, together with bitkom's managing director and digital bosses and IT managers from various industries, interviewed them and summarized their experiences in the CDO study. Find out how the role of the CDO is currently defined in companies, which competencies and responsibilities are associated with it and how this new function is lived in practice.

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Talent Management Study 2018

Study from 22. January 2018

Kienbaum first surveyed both personnel decision-makers and employees separately and, in the 2018 Talent Management Study, painted a clear picture of the current situation in the talent management field and the personnel development area that supports it. In addition, find out which factors play a truly important role for successful talent management and what action recommendations for HR managers emerge from the findings of the study.

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IT Agility

Study from 12. December 2017

The All-Agile IT study surveyed more than 250 IT decision-makers and provides valuable information on how IT organizations can maximize the added value of agile methods and structures and use them profitably for the company.

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HR Strategy and Organization 2017

Study from 19. October 2017

At the beginning of 2017, the personnel and management consultancy Kienbaum and the "Deutsche Gesellschaft für Personalführung e. V. "(DGFP e. V. ) conducted a study on the status and perspective of the HR function in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

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Performance Management in Transformation

Study from 26. September 2017

Performance management is changing and performance management processes are on the agenda of the vast majority of companies. This is confirmed by the participants in our study. The importance in companies will continue to grow and many plan short-term changes.

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The right Organization for Digital Transformation

Study from 29. August 2017

Digital transformation puts pressure on companies across all sectors to scrutinize their own business divisions and forms of organization, and adapt their business models to the new challenges. Jointly with Kienbaum, the Bavarian Employer Associations for the Metalworking and Electrical Industry (bayme vbm) has circulated a questionnaire on the topic of digitization to its member companies and has compiled the results in a research study.

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Corporate Governance 4.0

Study from 6. June 2017

This year, we have placed our study under the topic "Corporate Governance 4. 0 - Supervisory Board work between legal requirements, added value and digitalization". Not only legislation and regulation, but also digitalization are changing the requirements for fulfilling these tasks.

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Organization chart of German companies 1/2

Study from 27. April 2017

The study of the online job platform StepStone and the management consultancy Kienbaum shows in which structures skilled workers work today, how they imagine work in the context of digitalization and what companies can do to attract and retain the best talents.

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People over Pixels

Whitepaper from 11. April 2017

With leading employees, it is not a question of either/or between digital and analog, but of both/and - in short: a question of digilogue leadership. Everything becomes digital - everything? On the contrary: Humaneness is gaining in importance in digital change, explains Fabian Kienbaum in the White Paper.

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Future Management Development Study 2017

Study from 22. February 2017

What will executive development look like in the future? Which contents and formats are offered to managers for the further development of their management and leadership competencies? Where are there differences between the present and the future of management development? This study explores these questions and more.

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University Strategy and Governance

Study from 9. January 2017

Where should the management and decision-making structures of higher education institutions develop? What about their strategic capability? The Stifterverband and Kienbaum asked the presidents and rectors of German universities for their opinions on these questions, and 103 university heads responded.

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Generation Y – Is it all just a cliché?

Whitepaper from 21. December 2016

A new generation of employees is on the advance and places new demands on managers. A survey presented in this white paper showed which prejudices are actually true about the young generation of employees.

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The disruptive supervisory board

Whitepaper from 28. November 2016

How do supervisory boards steel themselves to confront digital transformation? A digital mind set, skill set and tool set and the courage to admit new members to one’s own ranks are all important requirements in order for the controlling body to embrace disruptive changes and provide agile support to the board of directors.

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The Same Salaries for Women and Men

Whitepaper from 21. November 2016

The gap in salary between women and men will soon be a thing of the past: The Family Ministry has presented a draft law to ensure equal salaries for equal activities. Kienbaum has looked at the nearly 100-page draft law and they have worked out what companies need to be prepared for in the White Paper.

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Women in Leadership Positions: Perspectives from Practice

Study from 22. September 2016

One year after the keenly debated law on “gender quotas” and one year before the end of the first reporting period, BDI and Kienbaum have conducted research on how companies are faring with the statutory gender proportions.

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Connected Car Study

Study from 7. April 2016

The networked automobile is the future, process and know-how problems the present. The Connected Car study shows where it flaws on the way to digitalized mobility among people and organization of car manufacturers.

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Women – Power – Government – State 2015

Study from 9. September 2015

What about the proportion of women in leadership positions in state governments? Kienbaum took a closer look at the compositions in Berlin, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saxony.

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Earnings Differences between Men and Women Performing Comparable Jobs

Study from 19. March 2015

The equal pay of men and women is hotly debated in public and politics. This study examines the differences in comparable activities.

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Sales Excellence 2.0

Study from 16. March 2015

Medium-sized companies depend on long-lasting and trusting customer relationships in order to survive in international competition. Sales as a bridge to the customer is the decisive factor here - Kienbaum has analyzed the situation in this study.

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What Generations Y, X and Baby Boomers Expect from Their Employers

Study from 1. March 2015

Executives and personnel managers manage three to four generations of employees at the same time. It's good to know what each generation expects from the job and what skills they have.

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