- More U.S. executives predict significant organizational disruptions in the next three years, according to Mercer's 2019 Global Talent Trends study. Sixty-five percent of executives in the U.S. expect "significant disruption" in the next three years, compared with just 35% in 2018. But only 37% of the 7,300 HR leaders, senior business executives and employees polled think their organizations are "future-fit" for handling these disruptions, making human capital risks a higher priority.
- To overcome disruption, Mercer noted that employers are using technology to align work with people to create greater value; building a brand that resonates with employees and job seekers; empowering workers and providing them with the tools to perform their jobs efficiently; and ensuring that HR is involved in planning and executing change projects.
- "Over the last few years, organizations have moved from anticipation to action in preparing for the future of work. But they risk bewildering people with too much change, ignoring the values individuals admire, and inundating them with endless process," Ilya Bonic, president of Mercer's Career business, said in a statement.
The talent shortage is now the top risk for 2019 in organizations across the globe, cited by 63% of respondents as their organizations' greatest concern, according to a recent report by Gartner. The risk impacts a broad range of industries and workforces, including industrial and manufacturing, retail and hospitality, financial services, consumer services, and the government and nonprofit sectors.
A recent XpertHR survey cited finding top-quality talent as a major challenge for HR professionals in 2019. And a Conference Board report identified company heads' biggest worries in 2019 as the talent shortage and a possible recession. Handling the talent crisis will likely need to include training, upskilling and reskilling workers and acting proactively to reinforce the company's talent acquisition plan. Employers may want to shore up their compensation package, including benefits like paid leave, and ensure workers feel a meaningful connection to their work. Flexible work options have also emerged as a relatively low-effort way to keep talent engaged and productive.
Organizations that don't prepare for the digital disruption will be less capable of overcoming the talent shortage. HR leaders will need to create a digital culture — not just provide digital tools — to empower workers and keep their organizations competitive.