Though it’s counterintuitive, technological advances have changed the way HR is working with people. While the fact remains that “technology changes; people don’t,” the innovations of recent years are reshaping the HR industry.
While many areas of the business world will spend 2021 getting back to basics, HR is starting to look much different than in the past. Here are ten disruptions to watch for in 2021.
HR has typically been a fluid department to be able to keep up with changing employee reactions and needs. In 2021, however, HR will be adding standardization methods that will make the work easier without detracting from the people. As accounting might use different invoice templates to streamline processes, so too will HR, in the form of standardized job posts, interview protocols, etc.
While technology has certainly made standardization simpler to implement, automation is the big buzzword in the business world that’s turning heads in HR. Automation efforts create opportunities for HR professionals to get out of the weeds and focus on bigger picture projects. This can include everything from candidate screening to policy drafting. You can learn more about HR Systems here and decide in what ways this can be beneficial for your business.
3. Employee Onboarding
Many of those who have started a new job knows the drill: the first day is dedicated to paperwork. There are often numerous policies to read and sign, as well as information about the building in which you work, company protocols and values, and submission of documents (such as a criminal record check). This can be a work-heavy process for HR professionals who assemble the paperwork, answer questions during the signing process, and ensure everything is submitted where it needs to be.
Employee onboarding in 2021 will be a more laissez-faire approach, with the use of integrative platforms and interactive onboarding software.
4. Remote Work
Remote working capabilities bring great opportunity and accessibility to those from all walks of life, from the woman who wants to see the world while garnering an income to a man who juggles work and responsibilities at home. This also adds a new and interesting challenge for HR, which is tasked with keeping employees happy and engaged. On the one hand, those who live a digital nomadic lifestyle tend to be happier. On the other, HR has less interaction with employees this way, which can be extremely disruptive.
5. Employee Engagement
Like with remote work, employee engagement gets both more challenging and easier every year. Where does the contradiction lie? Employees are facing more distractions than ever– social media, for example– which can have a direct impact on engagement. Alternatively, technological advances have created new and exciting ways for HR to re-engage employees and keep them motivated. There are apps that send positive notes of appreciation for an employee’s work efforts and apps that foster a wellness challenge with interactive tracking throughout an organization.
6. Eliminating Biases
Bias and neutral hiring are of the utmost importance in the modern world, where equality is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Through the use of various technological tools, HR can source candidates, assess their resume, and administer skills tests without knowing factors such as their name.
Names often provide insight into someone’s ethnicity, background or gender and can create an unconscious bias based on stereotypes. These are referred to as unconscious biases because those who experience them are largely unaware of the cause of their negative reaction to someone.
Recruitment has been evolving non-stop over recent years, with various ways to find new people for an organization. The increase in remote work has also directly impacted recruiting, as businesses are no longer relegated to pulling from a specific geographic location. Leveraging tools, such as social media promotions and word-of-mouth marketing, companies can find valuable candidates without posting a job on a traditional job board.
Additionally, machine learning has made it easier to target people with personalization when posting various opportunities and can help both in the candidate screening and selection process.
8. Compliance Efforts
The ever-increasing compliance requirements are affecting all areas of a business, from supply chain management to accounting. HR is no exception and is facing more scrutiny because it is so closely tied to personal information. Changing laws and regulations translate to a lot of paperwork and the need for advanced storage solutions to keep everything organized should an inspection occur. Cybersecurity efforts and technological advancements in cloud storage systems will make these continuous changes more manageable over the next few years.
9. Behavioral Analytics
It’s hard to imagine that numbers could overshadow the human side of HR, but it appears to be happening. Analytics regarding behavior and performance are providing valuable insights that can change professional development efforts and long-term employee retention strategies for the better. Analytics create quantitative, useful information that’s easier to process than what was once predominantly qualitative and subjective.
10. Bigger Picture Focus
The changing HR landscape will have HR professionals moving away from the minutiae and playing a larger role in strategic business efforts. Technology is taking away much of the time-consuming paperwork and allowing HR professionals to broaden their scope.
In summation, the more advanced technology becomes, the better businesses will be able to manage and engage with their most valuable asset: their people.