Ready or not, the workforce of the future is coming. In fact, in many ways, it’s already here. Our workforce is changing, arguably for the better. Diversity, flexibility in job roles and a yearning to learn and develop modern skills are just some of the attributes of today’s growing workforce. All of these things have been shown to have a positive impact on innovation, productivity, and efficiency. Businesses should be excited about this sunny forecast, but be aware that only the ones who will benefit from this new workforce will be the ones that start preparing for it today.
The good news is that even if you haven’t thought about your future workforce, plenty of HR software providers already have. Today’s HRCM software can provide all the tools you need to meet the changing landscape, providing what your future workforce needs and aligning with their new values. This changing landscape isn’t just shaping tomorrow’s workforce, it’s shaping today’s HR. To help you prepare, we’ve explored the intersection of what today’s HR can do to meet the needs of the future ready workforce. Here are some of the future workforce trends:
It should be common knowledge by now that the up and coming workforce will be predominantly made up of technology natives. While it would be wrong to say that this is the only or even the most important aspect of tomorrow’s workforce, it also can’t be ignored. Many businesses today make the mistake of overestimating the importance of technology to the growing Millennial and Gen Z (iGen or Centennials depending on your preference) workforce. Rather than simply offering the latest IT equipment and communication technology, companies should invest more time into considering how this technology can be used to improve the overall employee experience.
Offering the latest conference call technology is great, but that probably isn’t going to make your future workforce happy. Utilising company-wide social networks and internal communication, on the other hand, can be used to encourage collaboration both formally and informally between individuals and teams from across the organisation. For a generation that values work-life balance, social communication can be vital, while encouraging workplace collaboration can improve innovation and efficiency to give companies a competitive edge.
Looking for an HRMS that can be used across multiple devices is also key. Not only can it improve communication, but it also allows managers and employees to interact over feedback, projects and much more. t must also fit with the way the future workforce already spends their time. Research has shown that Gen Z works across an average of five different screens, an increase on the three that Millenials reportedly use.
With the majority of Millennials and Gen Z agreeing that science and technology can solve the world’s biggest problems, businesses need to take advantage of today’s HRMS technology but look beyond basic capabilities and utilise it to improve the employee experience.
In the era of the gig economy, the job role itself is evolving. With a growing number of freelance and gig workers as well as the increasingly remote workforce, the way HR manages employees will need to change with these evolving roles. Millennial and Gen Z employees are looking for increasing flexibility and variety in their work, but businesses shouldn’t shy away from this change. Freelancers and remote workers have the benefit of variety for businesses too, allowing them to utilise the best talent from the widest possible talent pool: The world.
With the right HRMS that can handle employees on a global scale with ease, businesses can source, recruit and connect with workers from all over the world, allowing them to secure the best worker for the job while employees can work from the location and at the time that is most productive for them.
A leading HRMS like SuccessFactors, for example, can provide a single place to store and track employees from all over the world. SuccessFactors Recruitment utilises over 4,000 recruitment sources from over 80 countries, while Performance & Goals enables mobile performance tracking and feedback with handy reminders to managers and employees that ensure communication stays open even across continents.
With so much flexibility and increasing globalisation, it should come as no surprise that tomorrow’s workforce will be more diverse than ever. Changing world values and economies also means there’s now more to diversity than just demographics. As well as ethnicity, gender, and age, the workforce of the future will be made up of employees from different backgrounds and with different opinions. Businesses should embrace this diversity. Not only does it also reflect the changing diversity of customers, but diversity has been shown to improve innovation and efficiency.
Cultivating a culture of inclusivity doesn’t happen overnight, but with the right software, companies can work towards eliminating bias by relying on data and analytics as well as utilising diversity-specific tools to look at gender balance and other demographics in their candidate pools and across their business. Using a panel of interviewers instead of just one to try and avoid individual bias and looking at trends between diversity and other important metrics such as turnover are just some of the ways that businesses can prepare for the diverse workforce of the future.
The benefits packages of the past simply won’t cut it with tomorrow’s workforce. Partly as a result of the changing diversity and flexibility of today’s workforce, a wider range of benefits packages are growing in popularity. While some of these benefits today are an added bonus, in the future they can quickly become a must-have, especially for top talent that can afford to be picky. Caregiver leave, expanded fertility benefits, wellness programs and much more are all becoming the norm in many of today’s top businesses.
As a business, you need to think about your own company values and create a benefits package that encompasses this to attract the right talent for your future plans while also meeting the growing needs of the evolving workforce. A superior HRMS can help manage both performance and compensation to help you create a true pay-for-performance culture that can not only attract the best talent but also improve retention and get the most out of your employees.
Reward employees with unique bonuses such as gym membership or activity vouchers as and when they reach certain targets or perform well by carefully tracking performance and giving managers the autonomy to assign rewards all within a company-designated budget. Ensure your benefits packages remain profitable for the business by easily forecasting different scenarios and allocating budget across teams, departments and the company as a whole by opting for an HRMS that uses intuitive all-in-one dashboards.
While it may seem like the workforce of tomorrow has high expectations, they’re also hard working with a desire to “skill-up” and take on as many learning opportunities as possible. Previously seen as “soft”, skills in collaboration, leadership and more are becoming highly desirable to both businesses and employees. The majority of Gen Z professionals, 76% in fact, feel that the skills needed today are different from the ones needed in the past. With the right planning, companies can ensure they are training employees in the areas and skills they need to be successful in the future while also giving employees what they want. In fact, learning opportunities are one of the most important things to Millenials and Gen Z’s, resulting in higher retention rates and overall employee happiness.
An LMS that can provide a comprehensive learning platform that builds the skills of the future workforce is vital. Advanced software like SuccessFactors learning provides the type of self-service learning the up and coming workforce desires with 43% of Gen Z learners preferring a fully self-directed and independent approach to learning. HR teams can create and upload courses that utilise a whole range of media and learning techniques, from short quizzes to videos and more. From there, they can track adoption rates and progress to see which courses work and which don’t. Combined with social communication, the learning experience can even become a collaborative one with employees uploading their own notes and materials for others to learn faster and better than ever before.
A B2C led experience is slowly but surely taking over. First, it was the B2B experience that got a consumer-led makeover, and now it’s time for the work experience. Advances in retail technology have redesigned the consumer experience, providing incredible automation and personalisation for streamlined service. This type of speed and personalisation is now desirable everywhere, not just for shopping. Some of the worlds biggest companies such as Google and Facebook have only exacerbated this fact by providing unparalleled employee experiences that focus on work-life balance and wellness. To compete for the workforce of the future and get the most out of tomorrow’s employees, businesses need to focus their efforts on the employee experience.
Today’s HR technology has already predicted this trend and provides the tools to automate workflows and look at the employee experience from start to finish at a granular level. Intuitive automation that reduces time-consuming paperwork and streamlines the communication between managers, employees and other stakeholders is just one way to improve this experience. Tools like DocuSign means important documents can now be signed off and moved along by the relevant parties from any place and at any time. Provide a single employee portal to connect them to mentors, line managers and all the relevant information they would need to work as efficiently and productively as possible.
Ready to start preparing for the future workforce? Then you’ll need a future HR technology today. SuccessFactors is one of the world’s leading HRMS solutions and continues to innovate to meet the changing needs of your employees and your business. Looking at key trends they predict what your future workforce will need and want, and provide you with the tools to provide it. Contact us to find out more or book your demo.