As we count down to 2020, it’s time for HR departments across industries to plan how they will approach the coming year. There are plenty of challenges ahead: between technological disruption, ongoing macroeconomic uncertainty, changing employer and employee expectations, and the emergence of entirely new work paradigms, the entire HR function may well be headed for upheavals of its own.
How can HR leaders and their teams successfully navigate these rough patches? The key is to modernize: in skills, in knowledge, and in approach. So, here are 10 resolutions for the new year which may help HR professionals boost their performance in 2020.
Gain competence with more digital tools
Even as more organizations move towards digital transformation and Industry 4.0, HR frequently lags behind. KPMG’s Future of HR 2020 report describes HR, out of all the business functions, as “probably the furthest from being digitally dexterous”. It’s time to catch up.
Invest in analytics capabilities
Data analytics have worked their way into every part of doing business, and the HR function is no exception. With the right analytics skills and resources, HR professionals can gain a better evidence-based understanding of issues such as performance, attrition, productivity, and even workforce sentiment.
Help employees find meaning in their work
The latest global human capital trends study by Deloitte found that only 53 percent of employees felt their organizations are effective at creating meaningful work. This is a potential problem, considering how meaningful work is increasingly being considered a part of total rewards.
Work on aligning employee goals with organizational goals
People need to see the link between their daily efforts and the bigger picture if they are to do well at their jobs. But there is still a gap between individual goals and organizational strategy: a 2019 global performance management survey by Mercer found that although 83 percent of companies globally set individual goals, only 56 percent have business unit goals, meaning that a great many individual goals are being set in a vacuum--which need not be the case.
Offer more flexibility in working arrangements and rewards
Globalization has brought a plethora of different cultures, generations, and expectations to the workplace, and the one-size-fits-all approach is no longer enough to meet all employees’ needs, let alone have them working at their optimum attitude and productivity.
Focus on providing employees with training they find useful
A Cognizant Center for the Future of Work survey found that the top reason why employees ignore or disengage from learning and development opportunities is because they find the opportunities irrelevant to them. HR professionals who are serious about providing employees with training need to make sure that training is something they find useful, or their efforts go to waste.
Help employees develop skills that are in demand
PWC’s 2019 annual global CEO survey found that the availability of key skills was actually one of the top three greatest threats to organizations, with CEOs saying that it was affecting their growth prospects and causing their people costs to rise unexpectedly. HR needs to help employees develop skills that will take both themselves and the organization further.
Encourage better communication between managers and employees
Research by The Conference Board has found that in companies where communication is more frequent and effective, individual performance improves by 34 percent. And when that communication includes fair, accurate, and job-relevant feedback, the improvement is 39 percent.
Involve employees in change management
In today’s increasingly diverse workplaces, with dozens of different perspectives and approaches at one’s fingertips to draw upon, it makes sense to involve employees in co-creating change strategy. And the numbers support it: a 2020 Future of HR survey by Gartner found that an open-source approach to change management not only increases the chances of success by 22 percent, it decreases implementation time by up to 33 percent.
Find new ways of developing leaders
The Gartner survey also found that 45 percent of HR functions struggle to develop mid-level leaders, 37 percent struggle to develop senior leaders, and 32 percent of companies complain that their succession management processes don’t produce the right leaders at the right time. There’s plenty of room for HR to consider alternative approaches for grooming the next generation of leadership.