Human Resources are constantly changing along with the functionalities and norms of the workforce. With that being said, HR has no doubt gone through significant changes throughout this year. If there’s anything we should have learned from the past year, it is to expect the unexpected. The COVID-19 Pandemic has done plenty to change the way work functions are carried out, and the opinions of many surrounding these. While we still live through the pandemic, we eventually have to prepare for the post-covid world. In light of this, we have compiled a list of some of the up-and-coming HR trends which have, and will continue, to shape the workforce as we know it.
Home as the New Office: If a year ago I told you that you’d be working from home for a good majority of the year, you would probably have laughed at the very idea. Working from home has undoubtedly been one of the most drastic chanlges employees have had to deal with. Nonetheless, it has put into perspective the importance of having a good work-life balance and how productivity is not always directly proportional to hours spent in the office. Many predict that rotating between working from home and at the office will become a common practice for many workplaces in the future, and it is one welcomed by many. Even large corporations such as Microsoft have announced that a hybrid workforce would be put into place, which allows employees a greater amount of work flexibility. While not every workplace will be able to make the switch, we still believe that a more flexible workforce is here to stay.
Reliance on Data-Driven Insights: As technology advances and more employees are working remotely, companies are beginning to invest in analytics tools which help them assess workforce productivity, performance and engagement. Gone are the days where traditional surveys are carried out to measure these factors. Instead, tools that allow real-time, detailed feedback and statistics are being implemented. In turn, this data can be used to make well-informed decisions to maintain the company’s growth. In 2021, data-driven insights will continue to determine the actions of both HR Professionals and workforces as a whole.
Employee Wellbeing Takes Precedence: The COVID-19 Pandemic has badly affected the mental health of many. Besides that, it has called many of the past workplace norms into question. Such as going to work despite being sick, or foregoing work-life balance. The role of HR includes advocating for and looking after the wellbeing of employees and as such, many workplaces are rolling out more initiatives that look after employee wellbeing. In the coming year, HR Professionals will need to focus on long-term strategies to care for the mental and physical wellbeing of their employees. In turn, these strategies will become key attractive points to prospective employees.
A More Fluid Workforce: The changes of this year have caused many companies to have to rethink their hiring and workforce management practices. Contract and freelance workers give employers more flexibility in terms of hiring and managing their workforce. As such, many HR Departments will need to take a look at hiring practices that will attract freelancers and contract workers as well.
2020 was a trying year for all, and has definitely redefined the workforce in plenty of ways that will continue well into the future. As such, it is important for HR Professionals to pick up on and prepare for any new trends that will have a significant impact on the workforce.