Future-Proofing Your Organization: Leadership, Employee Development, HR Systems, and Analytics
In Part 3 of our series on Future-Proofing Your Organization, we are focusing on Leadership, Employee Development, HR Systems, and Analytics. If you missed part 1 or part 2, we recommend reading those as well. At Carnrite we think about Human Capital across eight elements, and this installment dives into some of the key considerations for your Human Capital Strategy.
Leadership and Employee Development
Digitalization, hybrid work models, and workforce diversity are causing rapid changes in the skills needed in the future. These skills are not industry-specific, rather they span across industries such that companies are facing new competitors in the talent acquisition war (e.g., an upstream oil and gas company is losing technical resources with strong data analytic capability to AWS and Microsoft).
Resilient companies look to learning and development for reskilling their current workforce and filling some of their capability gaps. Often formal leadership, analytical, and other skills development are targeted towards high-potential employees, who typically represent 6-15% of the workforce using a traditional 9-box performance model. The remaining workforce is either managed out due to underperformance or directed towards more of a self-development approach. A recent HBR article stated that more than 60% of a company’s future roles can be filled by current employees, assuming adequate programs are in place. Reskilling is also cheaper than the “acquire and retire” model of workforce planning.
A major challenge for leadership in this ever-changing environment is engaging with both current and new employees to drive continuous improvement once the learning, development, and retooling process is complete. Different workforce models will impact leadership’s ability to effectively engage, communicate, develop, foster, and manage the most important company assets – its’ human capital. Learning and development programs must be multi-faceted offering opportunities to develop skills through traditional classroom or virtual learning, immersive learning experiences, such as company-sponsored schools and classes, apprenticeships, on-the-job training, and comprehensive rotational opportunities. This not only supports skills development but also helps to improve employee retention by offering an experience to the employee so they feel valued. Employees also feel reassured, knowing that they are growing in their career rather than simply performing tasks for a job.
HR Systems and Analytics
Companies that are prepared to address the future must also transform the role of HR and their Human Resource Management Systems (HRMS) to optimize Human Capital processes and elevate the employee experience. In resilient companies, HR plays a pivotal role in supporting the company’s transition to being able to meet strategic challenges by being more flexible and operationally efficient. This includes embedding a digital roadmap as part of the Human Capital Strategy.
The Human Capital digital roadmap should outline the strategies and milestones necessary to transition from providing what has been thought of as basic HR infrastructure (e.g., payroll and benefits administration), to becoming a function that enables the business. Data and artificial intelligence (AI) are increasingly being used to allow more sophisticated HR analytics by identifying critical new skills, measuring employee satisfaction, predicting attrition, and supporting talent acquisition and management. These analytics help HR to enable the organization through better employee and manager experiences such as improved onboarding, relationship management, learning and development, performance management, rewards systems, and benefits. Integrating experience and analytics via the digital roadmap allows the HR function to be forward-looking and to capture insights to define how it will contribute to the organization.
Likewise, it is important that workforce-facing HR systems and tools should be selected and designed with an eye toward improving the user experience. Delivering an improved user experience for employees includes appropriate use of digital tools, mobile capabilities, and quick, round-the-clock access to information. This is even more important as companies wrestle with how to support their employees in hybrid or flexible work models while competing for talent. Companies that are working toward future-proofing their organizations think of their employees as they do their customers. They take proactive steps towards understanding employee preferences to create technology strategies that best meet the needs of a multi-dimensional workforce and produce more sustainable and connected relationships between employees and employers.