2023 has been an interesting year for tech. With ChatGPT and generative AI taking the industry by storm, all industries were impacted and the HR industry isn’t an exception. In the aftermath of COVID and “forced remoteness” a thing of the past, companies are now consolidating their position on remote work.
All this amidst a tough global economic climate that companies have had to navigate has had unique implications on the HR industry. So, let’s take a step back to visualise some of the trends and possible outcomes we are likely to see in 2024.
Consolidation of remote work
From remote work being a feared concept pre-COVID to a forced adoption during COVID, companies & candidates have finally experienced and formed strong but informed opinions on what work culture works for them.
We saw both modern companies such as Facebook & Shopify and traditional companies such as JPMorgan supporting remote working policies. The impact on improved employee satisfaction & retention along with the access to a global talent pool has been established.
All signs point to a hybrid workspace becoming more of a norm, rather than a mere reaction to the pandemic, with companies using it as a strategic lever to attract talent that they could otherwise not access.
Adoption of AI in hiring
Talent hiring will also be forced to imbibe the advances seen in AI in 2023. In fact, 52% of HR leaders suggested that they are exploring opportunities to use generative AI.
However, unlike most other industries, since hiring involves humans interacting with humans, the infusion of AI has to be gradual. The use cases are numerous though. It has begun by automating the repetitive & monotonous tasks of candidate outreach and scheduling of interviews.
Very soon we will see this evolve to auto-screening of resumes, usage in asynchronous assessments and also chatbots developed to assist recruiters in technical aspects of candidate assessments.
Using economic downturn as an advantage to hire top talent
During economic downturns, many organisations, particularly those with robust financial foundations, find unique opportunities to attract top talent. In fact, the biggest advantage of the downturn we have seen in the past 12-15 months is that salaries are more rational and top candidates are more widely available in the market.
We will see companies in good financial positions leverage the situation and build strong teams. This was seen during the 2008 financial crisis when top tech companies successfully hired top talent who were laid off from other sectors, which helped them in the years following the crisis.
Increased importance of employer branding
With the regular news around layoffs by companies, candidates will be very wary of joining brands they don’t know. Hence, employer branding will not be an optional exercise but will become highly important to build trust with candidates, as it will have a high impact on hiring efficiency.
We saw that even successful companies like Shopify didn’t rely just on their financial success, but pitched itself as a remote-first company with a strong emphasis on work-life balance. This indicates that employer branding goes beyond just attracting talent - it's about creating a narrative that resonates with the aspirations and values of potential employees.
This is achieved through transparent communication of a company’s vision, culture and the impact one can have by joining them.
Bundling of sourcing, evaluation & matching into a single platform
Traditionally, hiring broadly has three parts: sourcing candidates, evaluating them and finally finding the right match. In today’s fast-paced and tough business environment, each company faces enough of a battle in its core offering. They therefore cannot and also should not spend significant bandwidth in hiring.
As a result, we will see companies avoiding a complex tool stack for their hiring needs. Instead, platforms that have a focused offering on only one part of the hiring process will have to integrate and offer a holistic solution that solves a company’s end-to-end hiring needs.
In conclusion, 2024 is poised to be a transformative year for the HR industry, shaped by the lessons learned from recent global challenges and technological advancements. The trends we've discussed, ranging from the consolidation of remote work to the integration of AI in hiring practices, reflect a broader shift towards more flexible, efficient, and strategic HR operations.
These changes are not just responses to the past but proactive steps towards a future where technology and human-centric policies work in tandem to create more dynamic and inclusive workplaces. Companies that embrace these trends will find themselves at the forefront of the industry, equipped to attract top talent and navigate the evolving business landscape with agility and foresight.