As workforce expectations change, so must yours
Freeing up workers to focus on more knowledge intensive tasks, the rise of new automated processes has distinctly changed the way that talent acquisition, pre-employment screening, employee engagement and workforce management is done. Not only helping Human Resource Teams to work more efficiently, evolving technology has also had effect on the expectations of the workforce, which is challenging and changing the traditional working day model. Thanks to technology that can monitor and manage dispersed workforces, people are no longer restrained to the traditional 9am-5pm, 5 day a week pattern. As a result, people now expect to be able to choose from a more agile, more flexible work schedule . Zero-hour contracts (for hourly paid or event paid workers) are not universally disliked and indeed are preferred by many. Agile working is a lifestyle that increases in popularity and even the salaried workplace is responding with flexible working options, so they can remain competitive and deliver the preference of their workforce.
According to a report conducted by Randstad, 61% of workers interviewed now expect to choose agile working by 2019. Its pretty safe to say that thanks to the technology now employed by successful organisations, this expectation will be easily matched. The opportunity to tailor working hours – to mix and match to suit personal circumstances – will remain key to attracting, retaining and ensuring engagement with staff.
Finding the right staff and retaining them through good care and management is important when aiming to build a strong team. Today’s HR technology is helping this to happen. As we approach 2019, what can we expect in terms of technological advancement and the possible impact it will have for business, employees, and the workplace at large?
Although many fear the rise of the robots and the dissolving of traditional roles to technology, there is no avoiding the fact that in 2019 Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Intelligent Automation (IA) will continue to advance. Already a staple in many organisations, intelligent automation and artificial intelligence are playing their part in workflow and operational efficiency
It’s important to remember that any new technology of this type enables scalable processes, a more competitive experience and/or the opportunity to engage the brains, not the fingers of the workforce. When an experienced-judgement call is required, the task will fall squarely on the human manager or HR officer. Don’t fight the machines, leverage them.
The evolution of talent analytics will continue. Collecting and collating data that stretches far beyond staff retention and engagement rates, software solutions will enable management teams to make strategic decisions based on 100% accurate data. Workforce planning will become more sophisticated and process will become leaner due to a better understanding of resource performance. Technology-led intelligence will help businesses to compare benchmarks and understand where they stand. If you are not currently making data-driven decisions, you need to. They are ready made tools you can plug in to your needs with very little effort or cost. The market place for candidates has changed and will continue to evolve. If you want win the talent war, at least be able to analyse the data – don’t stand on the battle field, gun in hand but with your eyes closed.
Workforce autonomy and increased flexibility will continue to be a feature in the workplaces of 2019. Understanding that productivity for each employee may be maximised by the tweaking of different factors – hours worked, locations of the workplace, days of the week that they work etc – many organisations are already looking into how flexible they can be to generate the best performance from each person on their team. Technology designed to support lone workers, track performance, generate live data and enable fluid and flexible schedule changes are already creating a new workforce experience. We can only expect more of this as we move into next year.
Modern, millennial workers no longer wish for flexibility – they have come to expect it. This is the new normal. Investing in an infrastructure that caters to their needs, part of your return investment will be in the form of increased collaboration, better productivity and as a result, sticker customers. Giving businesses the ability to flourish as the ability to work with or manage people based anywhere in the world, and working on very different work schedules, the sky will be the limit for organisations looking to simply grow doing what they do now, and for those who want to expand into new markets, regions or time zones.
Technology is the unstoppable force enabling the change. It will continue to have an impact on business and people. In times where people’s expectations are rapidly changing, knowing how to attract the right people for your team is business critical. Business leaders have little choice but to adapt and evolve as they remain the link between talent and corporate profitability.
Sara Pollark: www.humanresourcestoday.com Revolutionary HR Technology what you can expect in 2019