Innovative action is at the top of the global talent agenda. For years, companies have talked about incorporating innovative practices, now they’re implementing. Why now? Two letters: A. I. With the onset of technology that will quickly diminish industries, companies need to brace themselves on all fronts, including talent. Artificial intelligence is already doing the work of entry-level lawyers and financial analysts. Since white-collar jobs are set to disappear, companies are moving into action to attract and retain top talent. 93% percent are doubling down on commitment to safeguard their companies by changing their organization design. 52% of executives believe in flattening hierarchy, understanding the shift towards self-driven teams.
According to Mercer’s 2018 Global Talent Trends Study, companies are shifting into real change to prepare for the changing talent landscape. President of Mercer’s Career product, Ilya Bonic, “(Business leaders) recognize that it’s the combination of human skills plus advanced digital technology that will drive business forward”.
1. Change @ Speed
A growing gap in skills means companies need to anticipate how to train today’s workforce for tomorrow’s market demands. How quickly organizations can create a culture of continuous learning will prove a competitive advantage. Part of this culture shift includes flatter hiearchies, where 25% of organizations are moving towards holacratic work teams.
2. Working With Purpose
The dawn of automation and AI will highlight whether the company has a strong mission that resonates with employees. It becomes significantly more important that employees identify with company values and feel they contribute to their manifestation. 75% of employees say their company holds the same values as they personally do. How can managers contribute in ensuring employees feel purpose? Act as a “talent advocate” in facilitating movement. Hold “career conversations” where employees’ personal career goals are discussed. Executives must also be aware of a new value proposition: financial and health stability. Well-being projects that employees are interested in include financial health, as workers spend 10 hours per week stressing over their finances.
3. Permanent Flexibility
Being flexible is not longer about where one is working from. The era of flexible work poses a greater demand: “rethinking what work is done, how it is done, and by whom”. Employers are vying for greater control of their professional life. 71% of employers are responding with flexible work arrangements as part of their offering—a huge jump from last year’s 49%. There is some disconnect though as 42% of employees believe working remotely will impact potential promotions; 2 in 5 worry that working remotely will damage their career trajectory. Executives must work to ensure that flexible working arrangements do not mean stagnation. Executives also should consider that flexible work options allows them to work with a greater pool of talent for niche specialities. This provides greater access and organization agility.
4. Platform for Talent
The essence of the “On-Demand” economy means an ensuing shift in HR models. It’s no longer about hierarchies or being “owned” by a specific team; it’s about matching the talent of the employee with a company need. Employees that felt their employer matched their skills correctly, were four time as likely to say they thrive at work. The study encourages employers to “think broader” in terms of employee tasks and jobs: “crowdsource” as a way to pool abilities and “transcend company boundaries”.
5. Digital In/Out
58% of company executives say that state-of-the-art digital tools are vital to their success. However less than half actually possess the necessary tools. Technology has the capability to leverage talent and maximize company impact. It can help build diverse workforces and infuse teams with higher aptitudes for success. Only 15% of companies survey said they would consider themselves a “digital organization”. Companies know they should—and can—do better. They can encourage the use of data analytics and monitoring to not only to their core products, but to their teams. Getting ahead of the digital curve now means HR will be able to gain the upside of the momentum AI promises.