HR can't forget: People are central to the 'future of work'
- As organizations prepare for the Future of Work, they must not forget about the "human operating system," a new Mercer report concludes. The 2018 Global Talent Trends Study – Unlocking Growth in the Human Age shows that HR is pivotal in leading organizations' adoption of new technologies through what Mercer calls "unlocking the growth of the Human Age."
- The report also concludes that organizations must be able to adopt quickly to change, instill a higher "sense of purpose" into the employee value proposition (EVP), rethink how work is done and by whom, match skill supply with demand to maximize human ambition and creativity and use digital technologies to elevate the employee experience.
- Other highlights from the report show that most U.S. companies (91%) include innovation on their agendas, and 95% are considering organizational design changes. And in good timing: more than half of employees are asking for work flexibility to gain more control over their personal and work lives, and employees want clearer direction from their leaders on their role in the digital transformation.
Employers that properly manage their workers' skills and needs will be more successful in making the digital transformation, many studies conclude. But to get there, employers will need to reconsider numerous aspects of their organization, including how they communicate their brand and what the work will look like in the future.
Alight Solutions’ Workforce Mindset study shows that 83% of employees think a clear EVP is important, but don't know how to articulate that to their employers. While some of this may be due to a lack of knowledge about business terms, employers can do more to make clear their employment brand is understood through improved benefits education programs and better feedback channels.
Part of the employment brand or EVP is the way workers exercise control over their own work. For this reason, flexible work may soon become the default workplace schedule according to some workplace experts. Countless studies show that workers increasingly want flexible work options, and employer that accommodate them will be better positioned to compete for and retain talent, especially in a tight labor market.
To truly become flexible, however, employers must begin their digital transformation now or struggle to compete in the coming decades. The transformation will require organizations to put up the resources to back it and HR leaders willing to provide workers with the training and knowledge to carry it through.