- HR function undergoes identity shift as technologies and innovations reshape the workforce
- Essentially human aspects of work are becoming more important than ever
IN MALAYSIA, employee experience, organisation of the future, and careers and learning have emerged as the top three human capital trends for 2017.
This is according to Deloitte’s annual Human Capital Trends report, titled “Rewriting the rules of the digital age”.
With more than 10,000 HR and business leaders in 140 countries weighing in, this is Deloitte’s largest and most extensive Global Human Capital Trends survey to date.
Employee Experience is top-of mind for employers in Malaysia with 94% of those surveyed giving it a “Very Important/Important” rating.
Deloitte Malaysia country managing partner Tan Theng Hooi (pic) says, “The emphasis on employee experience reflects to a certain extent employers’ recognition of the growing influence of Millennials, and their expectation for a complete work experience that encompasses a positive organizational culture and work environment, employee engagement and work-life balance in addition to career advancement.”
He adds, “In building an ‘organisation of the future’, it is imperative for companies to rethink their talent strategy in an end-to-end manner – addressing an integrated set of priorities ranging from management practices and employee benefits to work culture in a digital marketplace – in order to achieve this holistic employee experience that the new generation of workers increasingly demand.”
Careers and learning is a core aspect of the integrated approach to building the employee experience – globally, its significance rose to second place on HRs’ and business leaders’ priority lists, with 83% of those surveyed ranking it as “important” or “very important.”
Deloitte finds that as organisations shed legacy systems and dismantle yesterday’s hierarchies, it is essential to place a higher premium on implementing immersive learning experiences to develop leaders who can thrive in today’s digital world and appeal to diverse workforce needs.
This year’s report also posits that HR and talent management professionals need to embrace digital and reinvent their strategies to be in tandem with the speed in which the 21st century workforce is changing and evolving.
Says Tan, “As businesses come to terms with the challenges of closing the gaps between business performance and technology change, the HR function’s role in creating effective human capital strategies to help employers develop, manage, and organise their people at work in the midst of the digital revolution can only increase in significance.”
The study – in its fifth year – reveals that the HR function is in the middle of a wide-ranging identity shift. To position themselves effectively as a key business advisor to the organisation, it is important for HR to focus on service delivery efficiency and excellence in talent programmes, as well as the entire design of work using a digital lens.
“HR and other business leaders tell us that they are being asked to create a digital workplace in order to become an ‘organisation of the future,’” said Erica Volini, principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP, and national managing director of the US human capital practice.
“To rewrite the rules on a broad scale, HR should play a leading role in helping the company redesign the organisation by bringing digital technologies to both the workforce and to the HR organisation itself.”
Organisations should better understand their employees and how their jobs are being reinvented
Further, the global trends in this year’s report show signs of reinvention on all fronts, including jobs themselves.
Organisations should approach external talent, robotics, cognitive tools, and AI systems as the “new, augmented workforce.”
Deloitte Global global human capital leader Brett Walsh says, “As technology, artificial intelligence, and robotics transform business models and work, companies should start to rethink their management practices and organizational models.
“The future of work is driving the development of a set of ‘new rules’ that organisations should follow if they want to remain competitive.”
This year, 41% of respondents reported having fully implemented or having made significant progress in adopting cognitive and AI technologies within their workforce. But, only 17% of global executives report they are ready to manage a workforce with people, robots, and AI working side by side — the lowest readiness level for a trend in the five years of the Global Human Capital Trends survey.
While many jobs are being reinvented through technology and some tasks are being automated, Deloitte’s research shows that the essentially human aspects of work – such as empathy, communication, and problem solving – are becoming more important than ever.
This shift is not only driving an increased focus on reskilling, but also on the importance of people analytics to help organisations gain even greater insights into the capabilities of their workforce on a global scale.
However, organisations continue to fall short in this area, with only 8% reporting they have usable data, and only 9% believing they have a good understanding of the talent factors that drive performance in this new world of work.
“This represents one of the biggest opportunities for the HR organisation,” says Volini. “To be able to rewrite the rules, HR needs to prove it has the insights and capabilities to successfully play outside the lines.”
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