The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted businesses and economies worldwide, and Human Resources (HR) has been in the midst of it all. HR has transformed into an enhanced function within organisations, and the role of HR professionals has moved beyond hiring and recruitment, appraisals and payroll administration.
In the reconceptualised workplace, leadership and HR must collaborate to manage organisational operations seamlessly, even in the face of upheavals. The pandemic has demonstrated the need for resilience and adaptability in the workforce, and HR has an important role in the post-COVID digital economy.
HR leaders are taking innovative measures to keep the remote/hybrid workforce productive, engaged and adaptable. They’re putting the “human” back into Human Resources, and the emphasis is on understanding employees’ challenges inside and outside work.
An MBA In Human Resource Management will enable you to be a part of this exciting shift in the world of HR, where a human-centric culture, diversity, and health and safety are the focus areas.
HR Trends In The Workplace Of The Future
The future of work will look radically different from what it is today. Here’s a sneak peek into the emerging trends in HR:
1. Hybrid work model
A Colliers India survey in May-June 2022 among business organisations across sectors revealed that 63% of employees prefer a hybrid working style. Around one-third of the respondents said their productivity had increased by 5%-10% due to the hybrid work model.
2. Gig workforce
A NITI Aayog report revealed that India’s gig workforce is predicted to increase to 2.35 crore by 2029-30 from the current 77 lakhs (2020-2021). People are taking up gigs on various digital platforms to earn a side income. The trend took root during the COVID-19 pandemic and has been growing. Thus, HR professionals must formulate new policies or redesign existing ones to reflect the altered practices and create a more inclusive work culture.
3. HR Tech
The HR tech market in India is expected to grow from $23.32 billion in 2021 to $38.36 billion in 2030, per Verified Market Research’s report.
It is estimated that within the next 10 years, up to 55% of companies will employ HR tech platforms driven by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) that will provide workforce insights and daily suggestions. This, in turn, will help HR professionals take action and deliver the employee experience that the workforce wants, leading to increased employee engagement and decreased turnover.
4. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI)
DEI initiatives address harassment, bias, discrimination, unfair wages and other deep-rooted issues. Due to evolving work models like the hybrid model, the need for DEI has increased because hybrid work may worsen inequity between in-office and remote workers. Hybrid work may also lead to unequal access to leadership, with in-office workers having greater face time with decision-makers. Proximity bias may also come into play, with employees in influential positions favouring those who are physically closest to them.
In India, DEI strategies have promoted LGBTQ+ rights in companies like Godrej, Accenture, Tata Steel and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS). One of the initiatives by TCS is offering to cover up to 50% of the costs of gender reassignment surgery (maximum cap of 2 lakhs).
The financial markets regulator SEBI has made it mandatory to have at least one female Director on the Board of all listed companies. Addressing gender parity in the boardroom and leadership has beneficial effects on the bottom line:
- A Harvard School of Public Health study found that companies with the highest number of women directors on their boards achieved a 42% greater return on sales.
- The CFA Institute found that companies with strong female leadership had a 10.1% return on equity per year compared to a 7.4% return per year for companies without strong female leadership.
HR professionals also work with Employee Resource Groups (ERG) to tackle DEI issues.
Reimagined Job Profiles
Beyond the regular profiles of HR Manager, Learning & Development Manager and Compliance Officer, companies are envisioning some unique, empathy-driven roles like Wellness Officer, Chief Happiness Officer and Chief People Officer.
Anirban Das, Chief People Officer at Lakshmikumaran and Sridharan, says, “HR professionals now contribute to a higher level of thinking and advice—especially in the critical areas of Talent, Performance and Change Management.”
Harvard Business Review surveyed nearly 100 HR leaders to understand how they envisioned the role of HR over the next decade. The result was a list of 21 innovative HR jobs that reflect the changing trends in business, technology, society and culture and politics and their impact on HR roles. Some roles are Director of Well-Being, Head of Business Behaviour, Employee Enablement Coach, Chief Purpose Planner, Human-Machine Teaming Manager and Distraction Prevention Coach.
With an MBA In Human Resource Management, you can drive innovation, ethics and inclusivity at your workplace.
As HR trends continue to shift and transform, HR professionals are expected to focus on employee engagement, upskilling, flexible and transparent work policies and an emphasis on DEI to attract talent. You can also be a part of this exciting journey without putting your career on hold. Consider pursuing an MBA In Human Resource Management from NMIMS Global in the ODL mode. A deeper understanding of the field will prepare you to perform more strategic roles at your organisation.