While previously only a third of company executives thought that work needs fundamental transformation, now the majority of them believe so. According to a 2021 key accounting company’s study about Human Resources trends, the most ambitious organizations performed the best since the beginning of the pandemic.
The research has revealed some key lessons from 2020, which involved the time of the first and second waves of COVID-19. Among the main findings were, the reevaluation of emergency situations as well as of employee health and safety, and it is no exaggeration to say that two years of organizational digital transformation took place in about two months.
Managers believe that scenario-based thinking is a competitive advantage as it has helped them adapt quickly. Employee health has gained importance: in most large organizations, serious measures have taken place without questions or limits to protect the health of colleagues as much as possible.
The trend of strengthening human focus has gained new momentum following such strictness. In the meantime, companies and organizations have managed to implement transformations in such a short period of time, which seemed entirely unrealistic earlier, and were originally planned to implement them in years.
According to the survey, organizations that were characterized by ambitious thinking could successfully respond to the sudden changes and challenges. They were more effective than those who switched to survival mode as a result of the pandemic. We are expected to face similar situations in the future, and if we stay assertive, we could perhaps cope better with them.
The two organizational attitudes
As the survey shows, two basic organizational attitudes can be distinguished, the survivor approach and the ambitious approach. The survivor approach believes in short-term thinking, focusing on the present, and thinks of change and new impacts as a distraction. The organizations that apply this method, strive to get over the situation as quickly as possible and get their operations back to normal.
While this approach may be successful, the survey found that organizations with an ambitious attitude were more successful in the current economic environment caused by COVID-19. They see change as a catalyst, consciously striving to shape their future themselves and make the most of the opportunities.
Where is scenario-focused thinking heading
Scenario-focused thinking is also gaining significance among business leaders. The survey found a significant increase in the number of people who started thinking about possible scenarios; the 23 % pre-COVID ratio rose to 47 % after. At the same time, the viewpoint that work needs to be radically rethought is growing.
According to a senior HR consulting manager who is responsible for future forecasts, While last year was seen as a demo of the future, 2021 is about a sustainable reinterpretation and conscious shaping of the world of work. It will not be enough to simply prepare to return to the usual work rhythm and locations a little differently, we need to basically rethink what the workplace means, and how to create real value.
And this rather means a fundamental redesign rather than optimization or process transformation. The results of the research also support this: while 30 % of the interviewees were thinking similarly before the pandemic, by the end of 2020, more than 60 % of business leaders switched to this opinion.
The 5 Future-Shaping Trends
Based on the results of the research, the experts outlined five trends, some of which realistically may seem distant to some countries, but experience shows that global organizational trends typically appear in average domestic practices over a three-five year period, so it is worth paying attention to them now.
1. Integrated well-being design
Instead of balancing work and private life, we need to move towards reconciling them. This also requires workplaces to set directions and take action at the level of the organization, team, and individual, but the role of the team is greatly enhanced. It is important to note that the integrated approach is based on performance, the goal is that the employees can bring out the best of themselves.
Heterogeneous teams of people from different backgrounds and with versatile minds deliver outstanding performance in crisis management, problem-solving, and developing new solutions. It is important to mention that superteams today not only consist of people, but technology solutions also play a crucial role as full-fledged team members. There are already examples of technology and man working in a team together, supporting each other, that allows films to utilize the key strengths of both workforces.
3. Training development with a potential focus
This topic has been at the centre of organizations for years, and the new approach is now shifting attention to the development of internal labour markets. This provides more scope for internal workflow based on free choice and individual motivation, which helps to strengthen the ability to respond much more flexibly to organizational needs. Learning from the operating mechanisms of the gig economy, where temporary positions and hiring independent workers short-term are more common, also plays a major role in the advancement of the trend.
4. Predictive workforce planning
Data-driven operations have also identified new directions for the use of workforce-related analyzes. Predictive analytics is playing an increasingly important role. The analyzes aim to provide a more detailed understanding of the workforce potential and a more comprehensive mapping of the workforce ecosystem. This way it enables the more conscious monitoring of the company culture and values, the company brand, the diversity and level of employee involvement, its characteristics, perceptions, and risks.
5. The changing role of Human Resources
Human resources management has an unquestionable and forward-looking role in transformation. In addition to human resources, technological resources are also emerging in this department as well, which is taking HR to a new level, shifting focus, and opening up space for new HR functions with a significantly stronger human focus.