As the middle of 2018 draws near, we can now get a better grasp on the HR trends that are on the rise and weed out the predictions that didn’t take hold. With older generations moving on, younger generations moving in, artificial intelligence taking over and the need to cultivate a more diverse work environment, a lot has changed over the course of a year! Is your company prepared?

1. Add Value by Focusing on Work-Life Balance

An effective way to add value to the company is to focus efforts on employee retention. It’s important for HR to not only take care of management but also the company’s employees.

Strive to incorporate a healthy work-life balance plan into your employee retention strategy. Small and midsize business owners must retain their top-performing employees in order to thrive. By taking advantage of this approach, you can save company money, build employee loyalty and job satisfaction, and promote a happier work environment.

2. Extra Efforts Devoted to Diversity and Inclusion

Going forward, be committed to developing a diverse mix of top talent with no favorable regard to gender, ethnicity or culture. The more a company reflects and mirrors the consumers they serve everyday, the better equipped they’ll be.

Your diversity and inclusion philosophy should aim to provide equal opportunities to everyone everywhere, and ensure that all employees feel valued and safe in order to contribute their best.

3. Learning Online

Online learning is emerging as a way to help employees gain knowledge in their field. There is tremendous potential to use this approach, especially among Millennials.

In the coming years, you will see a rise in this area with more organizations catching on. In fact, with technology becoming more affordable, the online learning industry is expected to top $240 billion by the year 2023.

4. HR Chatbots Utilized on Websites and Social Media Pages

Chatbots are already being used on a regular basis, especially for customer support. This is a great opportunity for HR to jump on in the coming years.

Employees will always need assistance and employers will always be looking for ways to free up the time of their HR team from tactical work. Chatbots could be the right answer for your organization to manage both of these things in a balanced and efficient way.

5. Community Focus

Whether environmental issues, education issues, governance issues or social justice issues, organizations are ramping up their community focus. As we work toward making the world more sustainable, HR as the people function has a big opportunity to explore.

HR’s job is to ensure that this could fit into processes such as assessment, employee deployment on projects and competency frameworks. If it’s right for your organization, it can ensure that employees are not only responsible citizens, but also have the potential to become leaders if they choose.

6. Artificial Intelligence (AI) in HR

Artificial intelligence has not been fully explored in the HR field as it’s a fairly new concept. As it continues to evolve, it could be the best approach to engage and retain workers by using it in conjunction with human elements.

The link between AI and people data that we collect from various sources is well defined. The most effective way to utilize this is for decision making. Hiring, training, engaging, or any kind of people-related decisions, can be made in a more data-driven, credible manner with AI.

7. Continuous Performance Management

Performance management will no longer occur annually. Continuous measurement is necessary to ensure that any corrections are made in a timely manner.

Top employees will need guidance on how to take on more responsibility. Those who have potential, but are lagging, might need more training and support. Those who do not have the potential to be excellent employees might be asked to leave.

8. Encouraging Leadership

If you believe leaders must be outgoing, success-driven and currently in a management position, it’s time to reconsider.

Today’s leaders often keep to themselves, are encouraged by their inevitable failures and have roles all over the organizational chart. While they are powerful, their strength and influence come from the inside out—not the other way around.

To encourage leadership, make sure that failures are accepted, questions are asked, initiative is taken and that those who want to be leaders are accepting of who they are.

9. Flexible Work Arrangements

Flexible work arrangements can come in many forms, including remote work, compressed workweeks and flexible scheduling that allows employees to work during any time of day.

Improvements in technology have made flexible work arrangements more accessible, but they have yet to achieve acceptance in many organizations’ company cultures.

According to Gallup, employees said the number one perk they’d leave a job over is the ability to work remotely full-time (35%), yet only 12% said their employer allows it.

10. Talent Acquisition

  • We’re now welcoming Generation Z into the workforce. This generation started graduating college in 2017.
  • Texting candidates will become the norm. Although still not widely used in the hiring process, we know that response rates of text messages are astronomically higher than the response rates of emails. As the younger generation moves into the workforce, adapting is necessary.
  • Employee referral automation is on the rise. Employee referrals are imperative to your business. Not only are they generally top-quality, but they’re also one of your top three sources of hire. The easiest and most economical way to get more employee referrals is by using employee referral automation.

2018 is a year of change for businesses. Any of the goals that organizations have set to reach in the future are being rooted now. Will you be ready to evolve with the trends?