Amid digital expansion, every workplace is going through the phase of transformation. In the year 2020, when we head towards the new decade, organizations need to be prepared for the global context of change. Some interesting trends for the future workplaces will be –
1. Remote Working
Six months ago, Remote working used to be discussed as a thing of ‘future.’ People believed remote would remain restricted to specific segments. No one predicted that remote working would dominate every industry and function. The location of an employee is not relevant now; what matters is their knowledge and experience. While most of us are not voluntarily participating in this experiment, it is still on. And we feel that remote working will keep undergoing improvements through rapid changes in collaboration tools, work processes (including a focus on documentation), and HR strategies.
2. A Blended Workforce of Humans + Bots
Humans and bots will be working together to ensure reduced operating costs and eliminate human error.
A research conducted by Oracle and Future Workplace, with over 8000 global HR leaders, hiring managers, and employees, found that half (50%) of workers already use some form of AI at work, up from 32% in 2018. Gartner’s research suggests that by 2021, 25% of workers will use a virtual employee assistant (VEA) daily, a remarkable increase from less than 2% in 2019. This includes Amazon Alexa for Business and many other conversational bots used in HR processes.
It will be interesting to see a new skill set of knowing how to orient, develop, engage, and work side-by-side with a bot.
3. Focus on Building Ethical AI
HR applications empowered by AI can analyze, predict, diagnose, and become more powerful and capable resources. Another trend organizations will be observing is how they will be using AI ethically and responsibly.
HR leaders must be prepared for issues related to employee data privacy and data security breaches. To build ethical AI, organizations need to –
- Provide a privacy notice to employees explaining why their data needs to be used for AI solution
- Ensure that the chatbot solutions don’t store any Personal Identifiable Information (PII) or confidential information
- Communicate PII and confidential information via a secure internet or intranet protocol
- Secure training data for machine-learning purposes and ensure there is no PII or confidential information
- Release authorized information to employees only during conversational AI transactions
- Ensure usage of right algorithms for the HR data to provide better decision making
4. More Transparency
HR departments are “cleaning their windows” and being increasingly transparent in their management. Transparency in the workplaces can be promoted by –
- Keeping the employees in the loop about matters regarding the company
- Improving communication and collaboration and making employees feel respected, valued, and trusted
- Practising discretion
- Inviting employees to share feedback and ideas about the company
- Avoiding micromanagement
For e.g., This transparency will be reflected in regular HR activities like employee performance appraisal. More transparency and the use of digital landscapes will allow real-time performance evaluations, allowing smart decision-making.
5. Soft Skills, the New Power Skills
One of the hottest topics in business today is upskilling, reskilling, and redefining jobs for the future of work. Managers are expected to hone their soft skills and learn all the complexities of leadership, critical thinking, management, supervision, and alignment. Skills that make you more relevant to the future of the workplace are –
- Being a better coach
- Communicating and listening well
- Critical thinking
- Empathy towards colleagues
- Social awareness
6. More Personalized Talent Management
For most companies, the definition of talent refers to employees with growth potential. That is why talent management will be even more personalized. Therefore, less standardization and more customization will be crucial to people’s development.
In this regard, we think that the performance review process will undergo a massive change. Those fond of annual reviews will realise that check-ins and feedback will become more frequent. Some of the key areas to implement more personalized talent management include –
- Compensation & benefits
- Internal communications
- Learning & development
- Performance management
- Management & leadership
- Organizational design
Gamification has been talked about a lot but very few industries have been able to use it well. Going forward, we expect gamification to be crucial in contributing to the hiring and training processes. For software engineers and data scientists, platforms like HackerRank and Kaggle use gamification to grab the attention of professionals and keep them engaged. Moreover, a multitude of companies will implement gaming techniques to reinforce their training efforts.
8. Greater Importance of the “Digital Employer Branding”
If developing a “brand as employers” was necessary in recent years, now forming a digital employer brand strategy is vital. Digital employer branding is becoming strategically more important to CXOs and HR leaders. With the help of a strong “Digital Employer Branding”, you can attract quality applicants, reduce costs per recruitment, and differentiate yourself from competitors.
For example, while searching for jobs, candidates also research companies, just as employers research the online presence of their candidates in their selection processes. This implies the significance of “Digital Employer Branding.”
9. People Analytics – the Effective Use of Big Data
It is not a secret that macro data analysis is a global trend of great internal potential. It will be necessary to have a People Analytics System in HR processes to track employee performance and aspects that influence their productivity and motivation.
People Analytics System can largely contribute towards –
- Recruiting the best talent
- Prioritizing recruitment channels
- Detecting employee health and injuries
- Enhancing employee motivation and engagement
- Increasing employee retention
10. Towards the Organization of the Future
The way organizations operate today is radically different from how they did ten years ago. Breaking the hierarchical structures and moving towards models focused on teamwork, each with resources and decision-making capabilities, is necessary to compete and win in today’s business environment.
Which is why we think that resources that operate without supervision and structures that promote self-management will be the foundation of a futuristic organisation. Another key aspect in this regard is passing-on the purpose of the organisation down to the last mile.
This new model of team management requires leaders –
- With skills such as negotiation, resilience and systematic thinking
- With knowledge of expertise of each individual to manage work efficiently
- Who know how to define clear and measurable objectives for the teams
To sum up, the future of the workforce looks interesting. AI and cognitive technologies will rule every aspect of HR management, which will play a crucial role in helping organizations achieve business goals. The sooner organizations adapt to these transformations, the quicker they become a part of the future workforce.
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