Rather than rendering HR obsolete, the rapid changes have highlighted the need to embrace agility and equip them with the right tools to support their organisations effectively
In recent years, the field of HR and talent management has undergone significant transformations driven by global events. As organisations adapted their talent acquisition strategies and made lasting changes in response to the COVID-19 crisis, HR professionals have faced the challenge of keeping pace with these rapid shifts. However, rather than rendering HR obsolete, these changes have highlighted the need for HR teams to embrace agility and equip themselves with the right tools to support their organisations effectively. Let us explore the evolving role of HR professionals in the face of accelerated change and emphasises the importance of leveraging technology to stay ahead.
Adapting to Change: The HR Professional’s Mandate
The pace of change, coupled with uncertainties in global markets, has made the HR professional’s job more complex. Nevertheless, HR professionals possess the necessary tools and capabilities to address the current challenges and those on the horizon. However, the focus must shift towards ensuring that the HR team has the right tools to support the organisation’s agility. In this context, obsolescence refers to the ability of HR technology to keep up with evolving market conditions. By adopting a mindset that perceives technology as an enabler capable of flexing to accommodate changing business needs, HR teams can overcome concerns of becoming obsolete.
Aligning Business Goals with Talent Strategy
In the current economic climate, organisations are increasingly measured on profitability rather than growth, necessitating smarter ways of working. This shift directly impacts talent retention and recruitment strategies. The demand for IT and digital skills extends beyond technology companies, with organisations across various sectors seeking to digitise their operations. To address this demand, HR leaders must proactively engage with employees, providing flexibility and upskilling opportunities. By focusing on talent engagement and retention, HR teams not only fend off competition but also contribute to overall business strategy and growth while weathering the macroeconomic environment.
Avoiding Skill Obsolescence: Mapping Skills for Future Success
Another critical concern for HR professionals is preventing organisations from being filled with obsolete skills that hinder adaptability. To address this, HR teams must possess a comprehensive understanding of the organisation’s current and future skill requirements. Unfortunately, research indicates that only a fraction of organisations have a formal skills framework in place. Without this framework, identifying skill gaps and individuals who require upskilling becomes challenging. Therefore, the most essential technological tool for HR is a robust employee data management system. Accurate, integrated data provides a holistic view of employee information, enabling talent mapping and agile responses to organisational needs.
Leveraging Technology for Strategic HR
HR professionals must leverage technology to enhance their strategic contributions to the organisation. Talent mapping tools, driven by comprehensive employee data, enable efficient project staffing and internal talent mobility. By aligning skill sets with project requirements, HR can avoid unnecessary external recruitment while providing employees with new career opportunities. Furthermore, utilising skills gap analysis for succession planning and talent mobility extends the strategic value of HR within the organisation.
Employee Engagement and Performance Management
Employee engagement and performance management tools play a crucial role in understanding employee sentiments and providing learning opportunities and recognition. These tools should not solely rely on performance metrics but also ensure equity with peers and market standards. Compensation management, when approached with a personalised and holistic perspective, contributes to effective talent management and career development.
Upskilling for Long-term Success
Looking ahead, HR teams must embrace the challenge of upskilling existing employees to equip them with a broader range of skills and experiences. In a changing landscape, employees with versatile skill sets will be highly sought after. HR leaders must guide organisations in understanding that employee departures should be seen as opportunities rather than disloyalty. Tools that facilitate ongoing communication with alumni can help organisations tap into their valuable skills and potentially foster future partnerships as customers.