How DHS is improving lagging employee morale

A 2019 report shows that the Department of Homeland Security ranked last among large government agencies regarding workforce engagement, but DHS Chief Human Capital Officer Angela Bailey says the agency is working diligently to improve morale. Bailey discusses strategies the agency has implemented, including the Employee Family Readiness Council, which offers training and resources for mental health, financial wellness and child care, among others.

Women's suffrage history taught with escape room

Teacher Brandy Gearhart recently used a voting exercise and an escape room-type game to teach students about the women's suffrage movement. The Indiana middle-school teacher's students worked in small groups to use clues to solve the game and participated in a voting exercise to learn about women and the right to vote.

Goldman Sachs tries to reinvent itself

Goldman Sachs' revenue and profit centers have eroded, in part because of regulation and electronic trading, and the task of restructuring and rejuvenating the company falls to CEO David Solomon. He's implementing the company's first multiyear strategic plan and emphasizing financial and bureaucratic efficiency, while Goldman has also relaxed its office culture, starting with the dress code.

Kroger teams with Ky. university to bolster innovation

The Kroger Technology & Digital Innovation Lab, a partnership between the retailer and Northern Kentucky University, will officially open today, store officials said. The lab, which is designed to drive digital innovation and also includes scholarships for students, is the latest in a series of Kroger's initiatives with colleges in and around its hometown, Cincinnati, aimed at boosting the store's digital and technological capabilities.

Website aims to help people with cancer understand survival odds

GoodRx co-founder Stephen Buck worked with technology expert Omar Mehmood and oncologists to develop the Cancer Survival Rates website to make it easier for people with cancer and their families to find information about cancer prognoses. "We want this to be a conversation starter, for someone to take this information and ask their physician, 'What do you think about my prognosis?' " Buck said.

Social media trends to maximize in 2020

Ann Smarty outlines three social media trends that will present opportunities brands in the new year, including a focus on the stories formats on Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. "Interruptive experiences" are losing their appeal and can be replaced with more personalized efforts thanks to advanced tools, and augmented reality "enables brands to create one-of-a-kind, immersive experiences, which facilitates even more connection and brand-building opportunities," she writes.

NRF: Holiday retail sales rose 4.1%

Retail sales grew 4.1% to $730.2 billion during the November and December holiday season, according to NRF, coming close to the top end of the group's holiday forecast that projected growth of between 3.8% and 4.2%. "This is a strong finish to the holiday season, and we think it's a positive indicator of what's ahead," NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said.

Gamers can finally score Xbox One on the go

Xbox One's Console Streaming is out of beta and available globally for players with Android devices. Users must be in an Update Preview ring and have a Bluetooth Xbox One controller, among other requirements.

Restructuring of FDA's OND to be delayed by about a week

The reorganization of the FDA's Office of New Drugs will be postponed by about a week, according to OND Director Peter Stein. "We initially anticipated launching Phase III on January 13, 2020, which would formally stand up the Office of Nonprescription Drugs, and the Office of Specialty Medicine, as well as the Regulatory Operations Divisions associated with these therapeutic areas," according to an email from Stein, who noted the launch is now scheduled for Jan. 21.

Greenblatt offers vision for HBO Max

HBO Max will complement sister service HBO when the streaming service launches, WarnerMedia's Robert Greenblatt explains in an interview where he expounds on the company's strategy for HBO Max for its May debut. "We're trying really hard to assign the same quality level and curated feeling that HBO has. It'll never be 50,000 hours of programming," he says.

House expected to pass $3.4B Puerto Rico aid bill

Temblors continue in Puerto Rico after a 6.4 magnitude quake that struck Jan. 7, but the House is expected to pass this month a $3.4 billion aid package that includes $1.25 billion for highways and $2 billion for community development. In the interim, some residents are taking up shelter in public schools that were built before the island enacted seismic building codes.

Very thin substances could be the future of manufacturing

Extremely thin two-dimensional materials such as molybdenum disulfide and graphene hold promise for the manufacturing of phones, headphones, solar cells and more. They can also be combined into three-dimensional blocks and deposited on silicon wafers for experiments.

Alaska Airlines named official sponsor of NHL Seattle

Alaska Airlines has been named as founding partner and the official airline of NHL Seattle. The airline also will sponsor the "Alaska Airlines Atrium" at the team's hockey arena, creating a gathering place featuring stories and images of the Pacific Northwest. "'Meet me in the Alaska Airlines Atrium' is the vernacular that we're hoping to create within the community," marketing executive Natalie Bowman.

Threat analysis for travel, hospitality, retail now under one umbrella

The Information Sharing and Analysis Center for travel and hospitality is merging with the ISAC for retail and hospitality to improve collaboration and communication on the evolving landscape of threats, vulnerabilities and remediation. The umbrella group will tackle the travel industry as well as casinos, retailers, restaurants, hotels, consumer products groups and more.