Top 10 HR Trends in 2019 You Shouldn’t Miss

The Top 10+1 HR Trends to Follow in 2019

Jeremy Francis

February 14th, 2019 HR Process  

The HR landscape is changing, and fast. Savvy HR professionals understand the importance of keeping up to date with the hottest HR trends in the industry, or risk falling behind the competition. Here are our top picks of the HR trends coming your way this year.

1. Big Data Lends a Hand

Given that HR has gained an important role in crucial business strategies, it’s easy to see why big data would play a role. You’ll see this HR trend emerging more and more this year.

Bernard Marr, the author of the book Data-Driven HR, says HR employees are sitting on a data gold mine: recruitment data, career progression data, training data, absenteeism figures, productivity data, personal development reviews, competency profiles, and staff satisfaction data.

An Outmatch survey has discovered that 63% of organizations surveyed were tapping into big data and analytics technology to improve employee selection and retention. Other things the same survey found?

  • 95% of HR execs believed that predicting on-the-job success and performance would be a major help.
  • 91% said that their organizations considered the HR departments crucial to keeping things profitable and successful.

2. Technology in HR Programs

As the physical and digital worlds merge into one hybrid version, one key HR trend is the embracing of all kinds of tech advances: bots, AI (Artificial Intelligence), blockchain, and immersive experiences through Augmented Reality (AR).

Gartner has reported on this tech invasion into businesses, predicting that every app, tool, or service will involve some form of artificial intelligence.

Given that platforms like KiSSFLOW offer API integration with a host of 3rd party software solutions, you can see how easily this can be done. The trend of tech in HR has been around for a while—even for us at KiSSFLOW. Our leave requests app is one of the top client requests.

3. Flexible Work Schedules, and a More Accommodating Workplace

Not every employee is built using the same building blocks, and the HR industry knows it better than anyone. Even in 2018, people analytics was quite the hot topic in the HR space and this HR trend continues to gather pace.

Studying employees around the world, HR thought leaders are re-shaping the modern workplace into one that focuses on the employee experience. And flexible work timings are a core part of this shift—even India’s $51 billion Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) has embraced this idea.

4. The Workforce Moves Out of the Office!

It’s not only those ‘cool creative types’ wielding their shiny Macs and thick-rimmed hipster glasses who get to work out of cafés! Things like VPN technology—that let employees work from outside of the physical office without any data security threat—have made this possible.

In fact, 37% of employees in the US are already working at least partially through telecommunication.

What this means for HR—higher employee satisfaction rates, the ability to recruit candidates without geographical limitations, and better employee retention rates as people are better equipped to decide their work-life balance.

5. One of the Most Important HR Trends? More Effective Collaboration

Gone are the days when the HR function was viewed as an administrative necessity—a department that carries out tasks to keep employees paid and fix problems. The smartest organizations are on board with the latest HR trend that the HR strategy needs to be perfectly aligned to their broader business objectives. To do this, all departments, including the senior leadership team, must work in collaboration with HR. This means working together in a true partnership, where the insights and experience of the HR team are valued and integrated into the business strategy.

6. Getting to Grips with Intelligent Analytics

The more forward-thinking businesses out there have been using HR statistics for decades now—turnover, absence rates, and primary metrics that give data about the company’s performance in certain areas. But data is meaningless unless it is expertly broken down and analyzed and, crucially, acted upon. One of the biggest HR trends of late has been the appetite of business leaders to take HR metrics and use them as a springboard to work out what is the real situation behind the figures, as they often paint a picture of the actual health of their business. Watch out for the spread of more intelligent analytics in the future that can positively contribute towards the success of the business.

7. Defining Your Company Culture (to Set the Basis for Catching HR Trends)

There’s no denying that using the unique feel and culture of an organization as a selling point is a hot HR trend—and it is particularly important in recruitment and retaining top talent. Individuals are increasingly looking to work for an organization that they can identify with on a moral or psychological level, replacing traditional draws such as good salaries or good pension plans. Employers need to harness this HR trend to make sure that they can clearly define and promote their particular company culture to their employees, both existing and potential, and make sure that the people working for them “fit” their company culture in the right way.

8. The Power of the Employer Brand

Linked to the notion of company culture, it’s no longer enough for a company that wants to succeed in terms of recruiting staff and subsequently engaging and motivating them, to fade into the background. Employees want to know what the company they work for stands for, what their core beliefs are, and what their unique selling point is. Organizations recognize the need to be crystal clear about this to their customers, so why not for those who work for them? Remember that a company’s employees are also their potential brand ambassadors, so it’s a wasted opportunity not to engage with them from the outset.

9. Switching to Proactive Recruiting

One top HR trend to watch out for relates to the concept of building a “talent pool”—or a list of potential recruits to fill key future vacancies. This type of proactive recruitment is going to replace the traditional method of creating a job spec and reactively recruiting for a vacancy as it arises more and more in 2019. The benefits are clear to see—recruitment lead time can be drastically reduced, along with the benefits of a higher caliber of candidates, who have been screened and shortlisted in advance to make sure that they fit the organization’s culture and ways of working perfectly. What’s more, this method can massively reduce recruitment costs too!

10. Localized HR for Worldwide Recruitment

A couple of decades ago, “standardization” was the buzzword for multinationals looking to expand their reach across different countries. The expectation was that candidates from other countries should follow the same process in terms of recruitment, as in the home country. However, an emerging HR trend is to be much more sympathetic towards the individual circumstances of other countries, rather than trying to enforce rigid, standardized rules upon them. This applies particularly to recruitment – it’s vital to recognize local differences in the selection process, interview format, and even skills/experience required to recruit the best that the particular country has to offer.

11. Nurturing Your Talent Pool

One hot HR trend that isn’t going away is the continued and increased expectation that employers should engage with potential candidates to their business in a personal way, with the goal of creating a meaningful and lasting working relationship with them. There is an increasing recognition that recruitment is a two-way process – that it’s as important for the candidate to identify with the organization and want to work for them as it is for the business to “choose” their preferred candidate. The war for talent for the best employees on the market makes this even more crucial. Candidate engagement could mean anything from keeping in regular touch with individuals in a company’s potential future talent pool, to asking them to visit the organization’s offices so that they can benefit from getting a realistic feel for what it would be like to work there.

All in all, it’s great to see tech contributing to HR trends, but it’s also important to stay on top of all these (not only technical) advancements in 2019. Given how much they’re changing the very face of HR, this is a get-on-or-get-out-of-the-way situation!