Five HR Trends that Will Define 2019

In this competitive talent landscape, it’s vital to stay current on—or ahead of—the latest HR trends. In looking ahead to 2019, what can HR professionals expect to see?

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The Growth of People Analytics

The Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report found that 84% of executives consider people analytics to be a high priority for their organizations. However, in the past, usability was an issue—many companies weren’t sure how to gain actionable insights that would actually drive performance. Consider that only 24% and 32% of companies in 2015 and 2016, respectively, felt ready or somewhat ready for analytics.  

Analytics and AI have the ability to touch every aspect of HR, from recruiting to performance management to employee engagement. As analytics technology continues to improve, and more companies adopt these tools, it will only become easier to measure, track, understand, and predict employee behaviors and trends. For that reason, many companies will likely look back on 2019 as the year that people analytics efforts finally came to fruition.

84% of executives consider people analytics to be a high priority for their organizations. Click To Tweet

Intelligent Recruiting Technology

Recruiting technology goes hand-in-hand with people analytics. As HR pros develop a clearer picture of skills gap within their organizations, as well as traits shared by their highest-performing employees, they can make data-driven decisions on resource allocation and recruitment efforts.

AI and automated recruiting technology can handle much of the administrative work, saving recruiters time and allowing them to focus on high-level tasks, such as relationship-building. 2019 will see more HR departments relying on recruiting technology for optimization and targeting: Optimizing the entire hiring and onboarding process while targeting candidates that offer the best culture and skills fit.

Creative Employer Branding

2019 will continue the trend of companies leveraging branding as a culture-building and recruiting tool. This requires a shift from being reactive to proactive. Rather than reacting to how their organization is perceived online—in reviews and ratings, for example—companies can exercise more control over the narrative. They can build creative marketing and social media campaigns that focus on company values. By doing so, organizations attract talent that matches their culture through self-selection—prospective applicants’ interactions with a brand help them determine whether they’re a good fit for the company, and vice versa.

The important thing is for the company’s internal, day-to-day culture to match the brand that they’re sharing with the world. Because if there’s a disconnect, new hires will quickly realize, word will get out, and turnover rates could spike.

The Growth of the Remote Workforce

Technology makes it easier than ever for employees to work from home, a café, a shared office space, or another country. A 2018 study found that 70% of global office professionals work remotely at least once per week.

And it’s not just full-time employees that are telecommuting. There are currently 53 million freelancers in America. By 2020, half of the U.S. workforce will be doing freelance work in some capacity. The rise of the Gig Economy is real.

Human resources departments can leverage the remote workforce to their advantage. Contract work allows freelancers greater flexibility in their career, and it provides the same benefit to companies looking for talent. Rather than hiring employees full-time, organizations can tap into a global network of talented freelancers and independent contractors, building relationships on a short-term, project-by-project basis.

Just as employees are thinking outside the “9 to 5”, HR departments should do the same.

70% of global office professionals work remotely at least once per week. Click To Tweet

An Emphasis on Soft Skills

Executives “anticipate a growing requirement” for social skills in the workforce, according to the Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report. Instead of shifting away from interpersonal communication, technology may actually be increasing the number of peer-to-peer interactions.

Consider that 70% of executives surveyed believe that employees will spend more time on collaboration platforms in 2019 and beyond, and nearly half of organizations consider the “productivity of the hyperconnected workforce” to be a very important issue. While younger employees tend to be more tech-savvy than their seasoned colleagues, they’re also more likely to lack important soft skills. So, these types of interpersonal skills should be a priority in recruiting and training/development efforts for many organizations in the year ahead.

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