THE BLOG

10 HR Trends You'll See In 2016

12/29/2015 02:56 pm ET
  • Kosta Petrov PR expert on Emerging Markets, Bestselling Business Author and CEO at P World

The rise of technology and social media have completely redefined the role of Human Resources around the world.

To understand what the future holds for HR professionals around the world, at P World, we spent the last month talking with over 60 international HR experts, discussing their ideas and predictions for the year ahead.

The conclusion- 2016 is going to be one of the most complex years in the global HR world.

1. Data driven recruiting.

Data-driven recruiting will definitely be a trend that will gain more traction in 2016. Access to data is getting easier and cheaper with new technology and professional network platforms. Talent acquisition leaders can arm themselves with data and become very strategic in their decisions. For instance, build talent pools using data helps recruiters enhanced their understanding of the market and be more efficient. (Maud Durand, Strategic EMEA Sourcer, Facebook)

2. Relationships not programs.

HR continues to be about relationships rather than programs and a deep understanding of the business. The key skill set for future HR people will be how to effectively understand and manage the impact of mergers, demergers and globalization. These changes have profound impact in the workplace. (Jenny Arwas MBE, Formerly Director, BT Group Functions HRBT)

3. Keeping the skills of your workforce up to date.

In 2016, keeping the skills of your workforce up to date in this fast-changing world will be more important than ever. Many companies immediately turn to an external training firm but it is worth thinking about the expertise and experience already in your company and how you can tap into this for the benefit of the rest of your staff. Your younger employees, for example, probably have knowledge of social media which an older generation might struggle with, reversing the traditional hierarchy of skills. Harnessing this peer to peer learning can be an efficient and cost effective way of increasing skills, and the knowledge transferred is likely to be relevant because it is delivered by people who understand your organisation's culture. (Anne Morrison, Chair, British Academy of Film and Television Arts)

4. Employee engagement and culture as top priority.

The new era of change is expected. Current economic climate demands smarter operational methods of business. The challenge to stay ahead of global demographical shift and growing competition seems to lean towards one common theme, Employee Engagement interconnected to Culture. The fact that Employee Engagement may have not been the center piece historically has a distinctive strategic place in business today. Executives must place Employee Engagement and Culture as their top most priority in 2016. This growing necessity has benefits and those that embrace will be victorious. Secondary to this theme is Leadership, having the right people that know how to lead teams, inspiring them on a journey to success and on the way creating an exemplary brand. Further, learning and development which forms the foundations of the brand has an equal foothold in this highly commercialized world. This triangulated theme is NEW revised HR Trend in 2016. Be in it to win it!" (Ravi Singh, Founder of Bluefin Consultancy [Bridging Knowledge and Performance])

5. Improving the employee experience.

I believe that HR is starting in new journey in terms of focusing. We have been dealing with HR transformation for the last 10 years, implementing new technology to streamline our processes. The time has come to focus on improving the Employee Experience.

Marketing and sales departments have to improve & develop the customer experience in order to increase market share and revenue. Our employees at every level have seen this improvement and are now looking forward to seeing this improvement not only focus on external customer but also internally to improve their journey.

Every function has implemented new processes without looking at the big picture in terms of employee journey and it has become a painful process between financial / HR / IT / Procurement / Benefits processes. All those departments are using different technology / workflow and documentation to perform the task that they have transferred in the last decade. Improving the Employee Experience in a challenging environment will drive engagement and retention. (David Lamy, Lecturer Human Resources, Paris-Sorbonne University)

6. Focus on well being and resilience.

Wellbeing and resilience continues to be a big area of focus for us. For us this means physical, emotional, mental and purposeful wellbeing. We even provide free counseling with an external expert provider for employees and their dependents.

As Europe becomes even more volatile and uncertain in terms of socio economic indicators, the pressure on individuals becomes even more challenging. Individuals are pushed to deliver ambitious growth targets at work and at home there can be struggles with unemployment (partner or child), financial pressures like the mortgage, loans etc." (Julie Hudtohan, Global HR for HR Director, Unilever)

7. Developing the human side of the business.

Most organisations with the ability to thrive in today's dynamic business environment are struggling because they don't empower people or tap into their full potential. While success in the 20th century was driven by process, structure and encouraging people to function more like machines, success in the future requires us to make more of the human side of business. Humans have evolved to deal with uncertainty through collaboration, cooperation and using conflict in a constructive manner. Businesses need to encourage their people to develop mindsets geared towards connection, conversation and experimentation. Curiosity is crucial: we need to continually question whether we are doing things simply because that's how they've always been done and seek new perspectives to identify potentially better solutions. While different departments and reporting lines provide clarity of role and accountability, they also create artificial barriers that block progress. Organising people into silos of similar skills and functions reinforces the patterns required to solve simple and even complex problems, but discourages them from working with other departments or people outside of the business. It does nothing to encourage the kind of conversations required to solve the major problems we face today. Businesses also need to redefine how they view fear and failure. Most of us allow fear to control of our lives. The key to eliminating it is to take back that control and look behind the self-imposed curtains our fears create. ( Annemie Ress, Former Global HR Director, eBay and Skype))

8. Big data analysis.

The biggest HR Trend 2016 will be predictive data analysis. We've talked about big data for some time and now it's time to start to act on that data and put it to use. (Johannes Sundlo, HR Controller, Spotify)

9. Consolidation of businesses.

As for the HR Trend for next year I believe that Consolidation of Businesses will continue and the envrionment will stay challenging for most of the industries. As such HR effectiveness and effectivity paired with analytics on the one hand and on the other hand I believe we are going to have more and more challenges with Generation Y and how to become the most attractive employer for the future workforce. ( Kerstin Knapp, HR Director, Richemont)

10. Reinventing performance reviews.

I think the hottest topic now is reinventing performance reviews, including dropping performance ratings. A number of companies like Accenture, Deloitte and others have already done it. GE is piloting. Another one is abolishing individual bonus. GSK have also done some very interesting things. (Bjarte Bogsnes, Vice President Performance Management Development, Statoil)

To download our full Global HR Trends Report, visit the following link: http://www.thepworld.com/ghtr2016

CONVERSATIONS