The drastic changes in the workplace mean HR managers are under tremendous pressure to prepare their organizations for the changing demands of today’s workforce. From responding to the bright light shining on diversity issues to how organizational strength and resiliency is built with workplace technology, human resources teams are facing challenges not seen before.
Experienced managers know that change in the workplace is constant and that recognizing trends and making adjustments is the best way to avoid damage to a company’s reputation, increased operating costs, or impaired productivity. According to Forbes, spotting HR sparks before they build into flames adds real value to the organization.
Diversity in the Workplace
The foundational elements of workplace diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts are now a vital part of every business. Fairness and equality are not new issues for HR departments or for the C-suite. What has changed is the certainty with which DEI issues should be incorporated into the company culture.
Strength Through Technology
With significant portions of staff and contractors whose job description includes WFH (work from home), a technology that facilitates collaboration without getting in the way, enhances connectivity, and simplifies training is more important than ever.
Technology that provides solid, scalable platforms for seamless remote and in-office interactions, that promotes productivity and payroll solutions can more effectively support the new workplace. Successful implementation of IT systems allows HR managers to recognize productivity and engagement.
Taking Sides on Social Issues
Employees expect the organizations they are a part of to take a distinct, visible position on the important issues facing society. From DEI initiatives to company culture, HR will lead the way in fostering two-way discussions and town hall sessions that enhance the workplace experience.
Improving Sponsored Health Plans
In a report from Health Payer Intelligence, nine of ten employees at large to mid-size companies have access to employer-sponsored healthcare benefits, while at small companies, defined as those with 100 employees or less, 55 percent of employees are offered medical benefits. For government workers, including those at state and local offices, 89 percent have access to healthcare insurance.
As businesses develop new strategies for managing health insurance benefits, many are considering how costs and the value of these benefits can be shared. Insurance plan designs will focus more on personalization, menu choices, and cost customization.
Hiring With Caution
As most companies have learned, economic turmoil can have a significant impact on operational policies. Sudden slowdowns forced many businesses to close their doors while others faced a cash flow crisis that threatened their continued viability. Under such circumstances, staffing levels receive intense scrutiny.
Being forced by budgetary realities to layoff employees creates difficult and morale-busting choices. One way to avoid future staff reductions is by avoiding non-essential hiring today. HR managers forecast most companies will exercise caution when hiring while economic conditions remain uncertain.
Working from home is now a reality for many employees and many companies are shifting away from on-site work plans. HR programs must expand their attention to employee mental and emotional health to support continued productivity.
By recognizing the new workplace realities and social expectations of employees, businesses can support favorable outcomes down the road.