HR leaders and talent professionals across Asia stand at a critical junction where old ways of working, strategizing, and executing talent initiatives stand in the face of fast-evolving business and workforce conditions.
A recent Linkedin live webinar hosted by People Matters had Steven Yudiyantho, SVP, Human Capital Strategy, PT Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk. and Vikrant Khanna, Global Head - Value Management, Advisory & Solutions, Darwinbox, explore and discuss the forces that will lead HR evolution across Asian markets.
"The future of work is not in the future. It's here now,' said Vikrant, framing the work and skills landscape that HR leaders face across Asia. As companies in the region enter the new financial year, it is essential to take a closer look at HR evolution perspectives and how critical talent considerations like agility and employee experience will take shape.
A more strategic role in 2023
The rise of digitalization and transformation across companies in India and Southeast Asia today should reflect the change in the HR function's role towards supporting business success.
Steven called for more strategic workforce programs in 2023, adding that while companies digitalize, the HR function needs to leverage technology meaningfully to be more strategic in driving business results. Creating workforce programs that help companies address skills gaps and improve engagement and retention are valuable for driving business performance and profitability.
Moving ahead, it will be equally essential to relook at past practices and examine how they can be applied in the future. Often to chart the future, it's crucial to be able to trace the steps that led you to the present.
"The present," noted Vikrant Khanna, "is where change happens. And that is what we have to prepare for."
Today the HR function has reached a state where it can orchestrate and write programs. The only thing perhaps holding us back is the love for the past ways of working and the notion that the future of work will arrive someday." he added.
Skills and capabilities also remain important in this shift to a more strategic role. Taking a more strategic role involves looking closely at how employees can contribute to business success. This means assessing skill and competency changes that today are fast becoming important for HR leaders. "All of a sudden, there is talk of programs like strategic workforce planning, assessing future competencies, skills ontology etc.," added Vikrant.
Changing workforce priorities
The impact of the pandemic on workforce priorities has been long-lasting. Today, companies hoping to attract, engage and retain talent need to make space for flexible work conditions and address employee well-being.
"Work from home and flexible work get you productivity as much as working from the office. That, along with a growing concern about health and well being are becoming increasingly important factors," added Steven.
For Vikrant, flexible work conditions were vital for companies in India and other parts of Southeast Asia. "Who do you need in the office? How frequently do you need them in office, and what alternate ways of working can we offer them?" he said were among the essential questions that companies would have to balance in the coming year.
Vikrant added that it would be necessary for HR leaders to create newer talent models to deliver success. "People are not collaborating in-person. People are collaborating virtually. People are distant from the physical setup of an office and HR leaders have to keep them empowered and engaged. How can your processes achieve that? How can your HR service delivery model evolve to make them feel that you care for their development? These will be important areas for companies to address."
HR Evolution Perspectives
To help companies navigate the challenges ahead and enable successful workforce programs that contribute to business success, HR needs to play a more strategic role in the year ahead.
But that is easier said than done. The People Matters and Darwinbox research study HR Evolution Perspectives 2023: Empower & Evolve presents a unique opportunity that allows companies to participate and shape the evolving perspectives of 2023. Keeping in mind the changes in store, the detailed research report will help companies chart the progress of talent management practices with actionable insights that help enhance their effectiveness.
As an HR leader or practitioner, it is your place to share your vision of change in 2023 and help build the right perspectives for this year and beyond. Be a part of the change that you want to see in the world. Participate now to help shape HR evolution perspectives for 2023.