Workplace transformation is happening for real. The employee group today is highly diverse and digitally-savvy, while the organization is all for productivity and cost optimization. Balancing these two demands the use of emerging technologies, many of which are finding mainstream application in people management.
The HR technology market grew a significant 10 percent in the past year.
Technology is fast becoming the face of Talent Management- the average large company now has 9.1 core talent applications (up from 7 percent in 2018) and is spending $310 per employee per year i.e. a 29 percent increase over last year. Clearly, an HR technology transformation is just a matter of time.
The basis for the shift to talent technologies
The technological dominance in HR has resulted from technology arriving at the fingertips of people. The data, mobile devices, cloud, and internet connectivity, coupled with the rise of social values such as openness and transparency is leading to a tech-revolution in the work ethos. The digital-native generation is used to a certain “technological convenience,” and expect the same at their workplace. Organizations, therefore, are compelled to integrate the hi-tech experience into the flow of work. Today’s millennials want to apply for a challenging project or select their next learning course, as easily as they can book an Uber or select their next favorite outfit on a shopping portal. Employees are a mere extension of this digital-savvy consumer group. Companies must tap into the data-advantage to provide a similar digital work-experience if they want to create a truly engaging employee experience.
What to look out for: Key Technologies
Emerging technologies, when interwoven into the talent management tools are bringing about a 360-degree makeover in the “employee experience.” Yet, the future will attach more importance to the “human experience”, deriving from a strong foundation of values such as social, collaboration, fairness, transparency, efficiency, and agility. Here’s how:
Cloud Computing will spur open and collaborative networks: Cloud computing is opening up talent management practices to go truly global. HRIS are becoming more innovative, cost-efficient, faster, flexible, and better controlled by the user (the end employee). Integration with mobile solutions are allowing anytime-anywhere access to data, propelling HR to take talent decisions where they impact the most. Cloud HRIS make way for better collaborative cultures, by allowing seamless sharing of information and conversations. It will encourage the adoption of new constructs like remote working, gig working, etc. , and allow HR to tap into a niche talent pool of experts in the gig economy. Performance management systems will be more interactive and continuous, with flexible goal setting and ongoing feedback mechanisms to align with the business dynamism.
AI-based all-encompassing talent solutions: Workforce data and analytics will help HR efficiently and effectively “find” employees on a needs basis. For example, skill-search, (internal and external) will be aptly streamlined to match the right skills to the available role, through Natural Language Processing. Analytics will help analyze social data of employees, help predict grievances and recommend personalized solutions on various job-related fronts. AI will obviously change the way recruiters screen, select talent profiles, making way for more intelligent and accurate talent matches. Much of this data will talk to each other, for example, a candidate profile will allow HR to design a great onboarding experience, while rewards-platforms will help employees select from a basket of rewards.
Social sharing shall revamp talent processes: Right from social rewards and recognition, to knowledge sharing, employee networks and applications will become more open and social. Employee referrals too will go the social way, by inviting referrals profiles not only from employees but from their extended networks such as friends, families, partners, vendors, etc. Publicly available social data may be useful to carry out a behavioral assessment of candidates, to ensure the right cultural fit!
Personalization shall encourage continuous learning: Learning experience systems which are interconnected learning platforms and mobile apps shall pave the way to build a learning organization. Mobile-learning, push-learning, need-based learning, micro-learning, gamification, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, MOOCs, content libraries will offer compelling learning experiences, with the employee as the “learning driver”. AI will empower them with insights to learn for themselves and create their own personalized learning journeys. For example, throw learning recommendations to hit the next leadership level. Or suggest potential mentors and coaches who have had similar career paths to help them navigate careers.
Recruitment technologies for efficiency: Talent acquisition will change to be more value-adding to recruiters, with operational tasks being taken over by AI chatbots and Robotic Process Automation. Screening and selecting CVs will be made faster and precise by Natural Language Processing tools. Recruitment marketing will overshadow mere job postings through AI-led tools which shall allow intelligent job postings to attract the right talent-fit. Video interviews, social employee referrals, chatbot-candidate conversations, etc. shall act as the new talent magnets.
Wellbeing: Technologies such as health monitors, step counters, AR and VR simulations will help create a wellness agenda complete with games, competitions, wellness coaching, and communication. The various facets of wellness- physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, financial will be addressed holistically through online wellness platforms for wellbeing, education, and training. Data analytics related to health check-ups will help propose personalized interventions.
Trust in evidence
All in all, data will rule the roost, and HR technology transformation will bring people to believe in the power of data. Evidence-based decision making will ensure more accurate outcomes in an ever-changing world.
All of this will tie into one outcome- superior human experience and high productivity. HR leaders will need to spearhead innovation and tech mindset, for themselves and for their people to adopt this new necessity.