Human Resource Management in 2018: A Look Ahead

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Now that the dust kicked up by the last economic crisis has settled, the businesses that survived these tough times – and new businesses entering the market – are experiencing a new human resources environment. Dealing with this change has been a key driving factor behind the latest human resource management trends. These expect to become increasingly important to managers in 2018 and beyond.

Easy PEO looks at the new face of human resource management. Today, we look at ways in which businesses can gain a competitive advantage through smart HR strategies.

7 Emerging Trends in Human Resource Management

1. Competing for Talent

With lower unemployment rates, businesses are competing with one another to attract the best talent. For today’s top candidates, it’s not a question of whether they will get a job – but which job they will choose. Naturally, a strong economy is good for businesses. However, attracting and retaining top talent will become all the more difficult as time goes on.

Compensation and benefits are part of the package that attracts talent. Because of this, retaining top employees will also mean that businesses must strive for employee engagement and a positive employee experience.


Employee Resume

2. Outsourcing

Outsourcing is not be new. However, with the cost of employing people rising steadily, companies are approaching things differently. They’ve figured out that they are able to realize better profits by focusing on their core strengths. This means outsourcing support functions such as accounting and human resource management. They are also looking at options for outsourcing value-chain elements that historically remained in-house.

3. Telecommuting – A Human Resource Management Challenge

Telecommuting is a Human Resource Management Challenge

Technology continues to advance, and allowing employees to work from home all or most of the time provides a strong incentive to employees. Telecommuting has certain advantages and certain challenges associated with it. Apart from saving on the costs associated with providing office-space, many businesses are finding that the flexible hours available to telecommuters are boosting productivity. However, telecommuting also makes human resource management more complicated. Effectively managing staff remotely will become increasingly important in the coming years.

4. Dealing With The Generation X vs Generation Y Gap

The new generation of employees has different wants and needs when compared to the previous generation. Nevertheless, both are still active in the workplace. What motivates Generation X may not work for Generation Y and vice-versa. Human resource management challenges will not only include addressing the needs and expectations of two very different sets of people, it will also have to look at tailoring its approach to the individual.

Generation Gap

5. Data-Driven Human Resource Management Practices

Data Driven Analysis - becoming a larger part of Human Resource Management

With technology allowing for detailed analysis of complex data sets, the expectation on HR managers will be to produce more and more regular analysis. Previously considered too complex to be feasible, HR analysis is becoming commonplace. In 2018 and beyond, the HR manager will be tech-savvy and able to leverage technology to measure results and justify expenditures.

6. Mentoring and Coaching Replace Traditional Performance Management Approaches

Traditional performance management approaches meant human resource management would analyze performance and key performance indicators. The employee was then given a set of goals against which his or her performance would be measured after a set period. However, the system was not popular with many employees, even when they received positive feedback.

Although results-based human resource management still has its place, increased developmental interventions will be the order of the day. Mentoring and coaching will be the norm. This will put pressure on HR professionals as they strive to individualize performance management approaches.

7. Providing Meaning for Job Satisfaction

Not long ago, we all thought that perks were the answer to motivating employees. While a pleasant workplace will always be important, today’s workforce wants more than a nice cafeteria and access to recreational facilities. Researchers are finding that employees want to know that their work has meaning. The implication is that human resource management must effectively communicate the company’s culture, its benefits to society, and the role that each employee has in fulfilling its overarching goals. This need is particularly prevalent with Millennials.

Much Human Resource Management to be Done; Who Will Do It?

All organizations achieve their goals by deploying human resources to the best advantage. However, achieving this is extremely labor-intensive and will become more so if current trends persist. Dealing with all this complexity requires dedicated human resource management personnel focused on unifying company goals with the goals of the individual.

For many businesses, just finding the time needed to implement the trends currently developing is impossible. They pay the price in lost productivity, high staff turnover, and employee stagnation. If you’re wondering just how you’ll ever fit in all the interventions required to keep your staff on top of their game, you may want to look at the second trend we identified: outsourcing.

A good PEO will work with business owners and their employees, providing a full suite of human resource management services. There is also plenty of professional advice on tap and cost saving opportunities to explore.

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