HR in 2019

By Aditya Mishra | December 16, 2018

Time passes by : we bid farewell to the past and welcome a new year. This is the time when organizations review their results, assess effectiveness of their programmes and look out for external benchmarks. There may not be a new strategy or new programme just to coincide with the start of a new year, however all senior leaders are going to zoom out of their day to day engagements and look at the external environment.

HR Tech at play

We have been seeing development in technology such as big data analytics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, internet of things, bots, augmented reality and similar such digitization possibilities. Has HR been able to use any of these tools while attracting talent, assessing their potential and evaluating their fitment? Have we started predicting retention of the key staff, developing insights from the talent market and fine-tuning talent attraction strategy based on these insights?
Scores of administrative tasks are getting automated. Shouldn’t an organization use HR Tech to schedule interviews with candidates, hold video interactions for screening, enable them to transact and communicate with the organization? Similarly for learning, development and other talent management practices, there is a score of possibilities for the HR team to spend their energies in carrying out strategic tasks and automate administrative or operational tasks.
Traditional Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is passé now because it largely focuses on keeping records of the past events. Our world of mobility and apps has made all of us – candidates as well as the folks working in the organization take actions when prompted to do so. We have to make our systems keep up with the current time and appealing to all stakeholders of the business.
We can strengthen employer branding by leveraging social media and various professional networks. The way we communicate with passive candidates and build a talent pipeline can be transformed using technology. 2019 offers many possibilities of HR Tech and organizations would take advantages of new technology.

Focus on Commitment

Globally, senior leaders have been paying attention to rewards and recognition, learning and development, employee benefits, health and wellness. In spite of huge investment of time, money and efforts, employee engagement scores are moderate at the best.
Organizations have been wondering how they can win the commitment of their employees and occupy a prominent place in their hearts. Leaders know, the feeling in the employee’s heart towards the organization determines the productivity and retention.
Given the economic scenario that we face today, the social norms around us and the rise of millennials in the workforce, leaders have to actively participate in building the culture of agility, genuineness, transparency and collaboration at their workplace. The life-experiences of the leaders and the younger people are hugely different. Hence, the senior people need to understand, the things valued by their younger colleagues are different from what they valued in their youth. They will need to learn to appreciate the current situation and free themselves from the baggage of their experience.
Soft power needs to be the main agenda of leadership development in the year. Right from the first-line supervisors to the senior team, winning the team’s commitment is going to be the key focus in 2019.

Redefining HR

Like operations, HR in many organizations has predominantly become a bunch of activities. Through the lifecycle of an employee, there is a need to engage, develop and leverage the human capability. Practically speaking, most of these are to be carried out by the line managers. They need to play fair in the team, identify and recognize the talent of the team members, build and nurture a relationship with each team member. All of these are the most important HR functions!
HR has to enable the line managers in engaging and developing the team members. They have to help managers define performance goals, recognize superior performances and develop capability of their team members. They have to build employer brand and strengthen it further.
Most HR teams today spend a lot of their time in administrative tasks of recruitment, attendance and leave management, salary hikes, employee query handling, salaries and incentives. They have to outsource these low value-adding tasks to competent third-party experts who will not only carry out these tasks efficiently but also bring their insights to the system and improve them further.
The New Year creates an opportunity for leaders to force a new thinking among employees in the organization, redefine the remit of HR, enable managers to drive up employee commitment and leverage HR-Tech.