Top 10 HR Trends in 2019

By 2025, the human resource management (HRM) sector is projected to reach $30 billion globally, as the business of creating HR solutions grows each year.

Since 2019 began, common trends have spread across HR executives and teams globally, and today TVG will take a look at some of these by identifying the top 10 HR trends in 2019 thus far.

1. The rise of flexible working

Technology has made it easier than ever for employees to work from home, a café or even another country.

2019 has seen a substantial rise in employees working outside of the office, with staff these days accessing all of their work via the cloud. A 2018 study from Switzerland-based serviced office provider IWG, showed that 70% of global professionals work remotely at least once a week - a figure likely to increase throughout the next few years.

For employers, there are many benefits of allowing employees to be flexible in this way, as remote working is proven to lead to happier and more productive employees!

2. Generation Z’s impact

This year, more people born between the years of 1995 and 2015 have entered the workforce, bringing along different values and attributes than anyone that came before them.

Transparency and an organisation’s contributions to sustainability have become more prominent, along with continual technology and learning upgrades.

Employers who can provide opportunities in line with this will be the first to attract this new highly-educated and tech-savvy generation.

3. Diversity

More companies in 2019 are beginning to recognise the importance of having a diverse workforce, in creating a positive workplace-culture and improving overall business performance.

In order for a business to relate to a diverse market of target customers, they ought to have a diverse team of people. Hence, we have seen an increase in respect and appreciation of what makes people different, in terms of age, gender, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, education, and national origin.

Companies that fail to prioritise diversity in their workforce are at risk of being viewed negatively, leading to a bad reputation for the company among employees as well as potential consumers.


4. Mental health focus

Results from the World Health Organization's Mental Health Atlas, show that still today there are not enough human and financial resources to support employees struggling with their mental health. Yet, 2019 has seen some great first steps in bringing mental health issues in the workplace to the forefront.

So far this year, companies such as Unilever have introduced wellness programs and related benefits, including exploring the link between physical and mental health by bringing in company exercise programs.

While there is still a lot more employers could be doing to deal with mental health in the workplace, 2019 marks a great move in the right direction!

Business costs of mental ill health at work - per billion (£)

Mental health problems in the workforce cost U.K economy £34.9 billion last year (U.K Centre for Mental health)

5. HR Software

The HR software market has grown substantially in 2019, with platforms focusing on talent relationship management, employer branding and applicant tracking.

Softwares such Wintrgarden enable you to easily build and nurture your talent pipeline. Through communicating and engaging on the platform, you can stay on top of your talent pipeline, ultimately cutting time and cost per hire.

Other HR softwares focus more on the employee. GreatPeople is an employee referral platform that sends high quality referrals for companies open positions in a fun and intuitive way. The platform is 50% engagement tool that communicates to and engages with your employees in all the natural channels and 50% referral platform that ensures you get the best possible referrals.

6. Trust-building

According to the American Management Association (AMA), 33% of business leaders directly link profitability to employee loyalty, and 76% of the same group believe distrust will damage that relationship, ultimately harming the organisation’s overall performance.

After issues with employee monitoring and surveillance at the workplace broke across various organisations last year, many employers in 2019 have taken steps to try and rebuild that trust by giving employees greater control over how and where they work.

Companies such as Google pride their success on the trustworthy relationship with employees.

Google is still viewed as an employer of choice. It’s an aspirational, ‘do no evil’ kind of company
— Setephen Hahn-Griffiths, chief reputation officer of the Reputation Institute

Yet, even Google experienced trust issues with regards to data and usage in the Google Plus data breach last year.

7. Employee Autonomy

Encouraging autonomy and self-direction in employees has been a trend within startups for a few years now, and in 2019 we’ve seen this spread further, to larger corporate companies.

Employees across various industries have been given more freedom over how, where and when they do their work. In order for self-managing teams to work effectively, HR directors will need to focus more on communicating a clear direction and vision to employees.

It’s also important that HR is easily accessible and all employees have a strong, open connection with the HR team.


8. The role of ‘culture’ in employer branding

Applicants in 2019 look beyond the brand communications and advertising campaigns of an employer, instead putting more focus on overall business culture.

Younger generations entering the workforce no longer want to work for a large, cold, corporate brand that lacks personality. Instead, they want to work for a company that uses its voice and acts as a real representation of who they are and what they stand for.

In 2019, companies have been working to create a warm and open culture in the workplace. This includes emphasising team-building through after-office activities as well as bringing in adequate learning and development programs, to ensure all employees feel comfortable in carrying out their role.

9. Smartphone business

Each year, smartphones become more powerful and sophisticated, leading us to rely on them more and more for work purposes.

The ability to now connect easily from anywhere at any time all from a small, compact device has meant that smartphones have become an even more important part of the working world in 2019.

With an app for almost every program/tool you use on your work computer, smartphones allow you to keep track of all of your work - this is particularly useful if you have to travel overseas for a business meeting!

10.  Automation & AI

The role of technology has become more prominent in 2019 across various sectors, and with this has come increasing levels of automation and a greater role for artificial intelligence (AI).

For example, in recruitment processes, AI has been implemented in processes such as scanning resumes, performing background checks and producing short-lists.

This has allowed business leaders to use in-depth workforce data in redefining employee experience.

While still a fairly new concept in the world of HR, AI is expected to completely transform the HR world over the next ten years.


So….what’s next?

From increased diversity to new slick advanced technologies, HR solutions are rising faster than ever, benefiting both employers and employees.

Companies are beginning to understand that in order to attract and retain a strong, diverse and motivated workforce, they will need to keep up by continuing to invest in the newest HR strategies.

What trends do you expect to see impact the HR world over the next few years?

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