Trends in HR

Ever vigilant, your blogger is discerning various strands in the ever-evolving role of HR.

Corporate purpose is now apparently top priority, with ethical considerations driving that change in the pecking order, making sure that making money for shareholders and maximising profits is no longer dominant. Organisations are being urged care about the ‘how’ as much as the ‘what’ aspect of how they conduct business.

If one were being cynical, you could say that even in that switch of priorities there is the underlying push for profits, in that an ethical approach is also being rationalised because it will encourage your customers to do business with you and attract and motivate employees.

A recent revision to corporate purpose by bosses of America’s biggest companies, stated that, parallel to the profit purpose, there should be equal focus on; improving society by providing value to customers; investing in employees; dealing ethically with suppliers; supporting local communities; and protecting the environment. Well, we’ll see if signatories like Jeff Bezos of Amazon live up to all of that. Other trends include:
  • tackling name bias (the discrimination against ethnic names in job offers and promotions);
  • moving toward recognising that behaviours to adapt to change are as, if not more, important as skills in the rapidly changing world of work;
  • HR leaders needing to think like marketers (selling the values of a business internally and externally);
  • looking after employees through planning and mapping their ‘journeys’;
  • fighting ageism as demographics change;
  • grasping the business case for neuro-diversity (as well as inclusivity); and
  • boosting HR directors skills in people analytics and digital HR.

Phew, that’s a lot of stuff to get to grips with, but it’s all grist to HR’s mill isn’t it? After all, it all goes to underscore the crucial importance of the HR role.

One other trend to mention is the increasing using of ‘the C-suite’ (ghastly expression, worse than ‘the Boardroom’ or ‘director’s suite’ or ‘executive floor’ etc) to refer to that cache of ‘C’ jobs that rule the roost – CEO, CFO, COO, CMO, CIO – to which, of course, must be added the use of CHRO (which, I suppose, is something to crow about, pun intended!!).

Published on Nov 08, 2019 by Neil Thomas