5 HR trends to look out for in 2020

During the last decade, the scope of HR has expanded and evolved alongside advances in technology, changes in the way organisations function, how teams are managed and how employees set their expectation regarding work.

As human resources embark on a new decade, HR must focus more on the human element of human resources and people management to continue providing engaging work experiences for employees. Here are some of the HR trends that are expected to transform both the workplace and workforce in 2020.

1.  Employee Experience

Concentrating on creating a great employee experience is expected to be a key priority this year. After all, well-looked after employees have a huge impact on an organisation as a whole from fewer sick days and increased employee retention to a more dedicated workforce and much easier recruitment drives. The employee experience is the journey that the employee will take within your organisation. This starts with attracting and hiring talent to onboarding and engaging new employees. It then moves on to support and development and ends with offboarding. While employee engagement is the end goal, employee experience is the means to achieve that end.

2.  Virtual Reality in Recruitment

Virtual Reality (VR) will become more of a feature this year as HRs harness the technology to pinpoint the most skilled candidates as part of the pre-interview screening process. At the interview stage, VR allows candidates to demonstrate their practical skills. This technology could be a great investment for those positions that require extensive on the job training. The British Army has already been using virtual reality (VR) as part of its recruitment drive for a few years. It puts potential recruits into the midst of actual live fire army training exercises to give them a good insight into what life is like in the army. After testing it at various events and posting on YouTube as part of their recruitment strategy, the British Army saw a 66% increase in recruitment applications in just the first month.

3.  Outsourcing HR

The demand for customised and flexible outsourced HR solutions has risen sharply within the last few years. This will only continue this year as new technologies and increased employee participation in HR processes will likely result in a shift to smaller HR departments. Employees will be increasingly given the task to input their own data into self-service systems. HR responsibilities such as transaction-heavy tasks, benefits administration, recruitment, contracts and other related services will be entirely outsourced to HR specialists. This will become particularly apparent as regulations surrounding employment and benefits become more complex, more businesses will turn to HR experts to help navigate through this complex landscape.

4.  HR Analytics

The use of HR analytics may not be anything new, but this year more businesses will begin to better harness their data through analytics tools. This data-driven approach will enable businesses to make more informed and objective decisions. Companies will be able to learn valuable insights on employee performance and satisfaction and discover what influences their motivation and productivity. Recruitment data, employee statistics and performance KPIs will enable companies to apply this valuable data to make smarter business decisions such as less biased hiring decisions to understanding how to better support their existing employees.

5.  Permanent flexibility

Flexible working has rapidly become the new norm across many industries and not just in the UK. Around the world, working remotely has risen 159% since 2005. Flexible working is creating happier and more productive employees. Businesses are using flexible working as a valuable incentive to attract new talent as many of today’s job seeks are looking for a greater work/life balance and more flexibility in the way they work. The gig economy will also see a large part of the workforce move away from traditional full-time jobs. An increasing number are predicted to become ‘free agent’ types of employees and contracted on a per-project basis.

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