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The end of 2017 is fast approaching, and HR experts are doing a lot of soul-searching about new trends for the coming year. It seems that 2018 is all about technology, no matter whether you’re an HR specialist looking for better ways to keep and engage with employees or a recruiter trying to find, attract and connect with the best candidate for a position. Like every industry, HR is being impacted by macro trends: technology, generational shifts and a focus on personal empowerment. Here’s a quick outline of some of the industry’s tech-related trends, many of which are being driven the by the human resources industry itself.
The issue of hiring bias (conscious or unconscious) could be a thing of the past with the advent of new screening software that strips away key parts of a candidate’s background while leaving their achievements, abilities and information that enables a role to be chosen on merit.
These days, it’s easier to headhunt, narrow a talent pool and engage with passive candidates by utilizing hashtags, sub-forums and other methods of online communication. Skilled job recruitment is also being revolutionized by open sourcing and tracking tools.
Another technique that may be utilized as a candidate screener in the near future is gamification. It sounds complicated, but it can be as straightforward as creating a smartphone app that tracks critical skillsets and cognitive abilities while engaging the candidate in a game that is designed to be fun. The technology already exists.
Improving the Recruitment Cycle
Research by Software Advice has shown that managing the hiring process – including how candidates perceive they are being treating – is critical to a company’s ability to successfully attract and recruit top candidates. Software can help, by providing automatic instant replies that speed up and provide important information about the process and keeping candidate resumes within the system. High volume recruitment is being automated by chatbots and highly skilled job recruitment by these recruitment management systems and open sourcing tools.
These are just a few of the ways that recruitment is becoming more predictive and candidate-friendly.
Research shows that less than 50% of companies have automated and integrated all of their basic processes, although there are many vendors on the market. Cloud-based HR has also grown significantly. However, the newest focus by tech savvy companies is increasing productivity and engagement within teams.
I know, we’ve all heard about this for years, but statistics indicate that 37% of employees are working virtually, some of them across the globe. With job satisfaction a critical factor in retention, this trend will continue to grow.
Continuous learning is another retention factor, particularly for millennials, and it’s another hot trend. Learning management software is also helpful as a tool to boost collaboration, with teams contributing to programs as necessary. Equally importantly, it allows for HR to measure employee learning and productivity through measurable data. The methods are getting smarter and will include AI-based systems and virtual reality.
Continuous Performance Management
There will be new methods for addressing the performance not only of individuals, but of teams, and they will not be once a year, and ratings-based, but involve real-time processes for goals, evaluation, feedback, coaching and incentives. A recent Deloitte study found that “continuous management performance practices are being deployed on a wide scale.”
People Analytics and Engagement
Another new trend noted by experts is the rise of organizational network analysis tools. Today’s organizations have to be designed for speed, adaptability and agility and tools are being developed to assist. Feedback tools that allow employees to provide comments and feedback on their workplace are also growing in popularity. Surveys that check systems, sentiment and even wellness are being embraced as part of a culture of engagement, but they can also measure valuable analytics. Today, the market provides managers with dashboard solutions to help them and their teams increase productivity.
These are all fascinating developments, but the elephant in the room is that technology may replace many of the very jobs that it is currently designed to help us with. Artificial intelligence will soon replace repetitive, task-based work and some professions and managers will be traded for predictive analytics. We need to begin identifying the positions that may be lost, so we can better help the employees of the future to pivot into new roles tomorrow.