As 2015 kicked off we were advised, via multiple sources, which HR trends to pay attention to during the year. So what’s on the horizon you ask? What have the pundits and prognosticators highlighted as HR trends? If you’ve had the time over the past month perhaps you’ve read a number of these predictions. If, however, you’re looking for a quick recap from what’s on the web and in the HR blogosphere, here are three main trends that have been discussed in multiple corners.
1. Talent Acquisition
If you haven’t paid much attention to updating your talent attraction and recruiting practices lately, the jig may soon be up. Recruiting has changed dramatically due to a number of factors including enhanced technology, the demand on sourcers and/or recruiters to identify and assess critical talent, and the shift to using both external and internal networks to increase referrals and hire more effectively.
In 2015 organizations that have been sitting on the sidelines may finally take the necessary steps to explore recruitment marketing, dive into employer branding, and ensure their recruitment platforms are mobile-friendly.
2. Employee Retention
Recruiting critical talent is hard work so one of the trends for HR will be a return to focusing on improving retention and devising appropriate strategies to do just that.
Employees are overworked, ticked off, and the economy has picked up. This could be the perfect storm for a mass exodus unless HR teams focus on getting some things back on track. I even talked about Internal Recruiting as a ‘thing to do”—one way to look at solving the ‘quit’ issue.
Steve Boese suggests approaching retention with a marketing mindset. Boese writes, “Marketers always remind us that it is much less expensive to keep, renew, and occasionally upsell existing customers than it is to try and find brand new customers.”
He says the same principle applies to HR. “It is easier, cheaper, and probably a better long-term play to keep working, investing, developing, and yes marketing to the existing employees than to always be on the hunt for external talent.”
Tim Sacket takes the focus on employees a step further. He predicts a shift from the focus on “supporting the business” to “people operations.” He goes on to ask, “What if our job, our goal in life, was to actually support our employees!? Actually make them better.”
Laurie Ruettimann wrapped it up nicely in her look into 2015, “Why don’t you do some good old-fashioned HR for a change?”
I think that’s a grand idea.
HR technology will also focus on employees in the form of employee experience. An article in Forbes went so far as to say, "The days of selecting an HR vendor based on features and checklists are coming to an end... buyers will start looking at HR technology as a total employee experience.”
3. HR Technology
The evolution of HR Technology continues whether that is in core HRMS platforms or via other offerings that bring feedback, assessment, or informal learning and collaboration technologies. The employee-as-consumer mindset continues. People are accustomed to self-learning, self-solving and self-tracking with wearable and mobile devices and HR technology vendors are focusing on solutions that allow for stronger user adoption, engagement, and usage.
Those are three mammoth areas. Developing plans to tackle each can be quite an undertaking for any HR practitioner. But nothing exists in isolation so let’s take a holistic view:
1. The acquisition of talent remains a critically identified need for organizations and organizations may need to adjust from ‘traditional’ models of post-and-pray.
2. With many companies growing as the economy picks up steam, retaining your best employees in 2015 is a top HR priority.
3. HR technology will continue to evolve to support the needs of HR and employees. Analysts point out that ease-of-use and ease of adoption will be key to selecting the highest-value HR technology platforms.
All these trends are interconnected and, quite frankly, what HR has always been about—enabling and supporting employees for the attainment of organizational goals.