HR is changing faster than ever. The digital age has created a host of new opportunities for HR departments, enabling them to streamline internal processes and drive value back through the entire company.
As a result, we’re seeing an increasing number of innovative new HR initiatives that are designed to improve operational performance and service delivery.
However, with so many new HR trends coming to market at such a rapid pace, choosing which ones are the right fit for your business can be tricky. Read on to discover the top five emerging HR trends that will guarantee success in 2023—and beyond!
Improving the Employee Experience (EX)
With so many organizations struggling with employee retention, it is no longer enough to hire the best and the brightest. You must build a company culture that delivers a complete employee experience that ensures your employees are happy to come to work each day.
HR departments are increasingly being tasked with impacting employees’ day-to-day experience with the business, from their initial recruitment through to their end-of-career transition.
“In a world where money is no longer the primary motivating factor for employees, focusing on the employee experience is the most promising competitive advantage that organizations can create.” says Jacob Morgan, author of The Employee Experience Advantage.
Enhancing the employee experience is one of the biggest HR trends, and it is not just about hiring the right people; EX encompasses the complete employee lifecycle from recruitment, to onboarding, to talent development, and retention to is a holistic shift from traditional employee engagement.
By taking a strategic approach to employee communications, onboarding, and training, HR can improve traditional HR metrics like turnover and absentee as well as positively impact the customer experience and overall profitability.
The reality is employee expectation are rapidly changing and the battle for top talent has never been more competitive. As today’s workforce comes to expect more and more out of the experience they get from their employers, those that let their standards slip are likely to lose out on top talent.
The Rise of Remote Working
The next big HR trend for 2023 is the continued rise of remote working.
The truth is that the idea of remote work is nothing new, however due to the recent pandemic, the remote work HR trend has gone to the next level being embraced by many mainstream industries and organizations.
As we continue to move beyond the COVID-19 pandemic, the expectations of how we continue work now and in the future has been forever changed. And while there is some question about the future of remote work, one thing is clear–employees overwhelmingly don't want to return to the office full time.
According to a recent Gallop poll, "Approximately 56% of full-time employees in the U.S. -- more than 70 million workers -- say their job can be done working remotely from home."
There’s been a growing trend for businesses to take their teams offsite for some time now, but the rise of remote working is set to take things to the next level.
Over the next five years, we’ll see more organizations putting employees on a remote working footing, and even those that work on-site will be increasingly open to the idea of remote work.
Remote working has been slow to catch on in some industries, but momentum is growing across the board.
In healthcare, remote working is taking off as a natural way to tackle the challenge of staffing shortages. While in industries like technology and professional services, remote working is increasingly viewed as a viable alternative to hiring in hard-to-find skills.
This continued rise of remote working will present significant challenges for HR, but it will also offer an array of benefits, from improved productivity and reduced absenteeism to improved employee engagement and retention.
Taking a Larger Role in Digital Transformation
While in the past the role of HR was seen primarily as a support function, delivering employee-based services to the organization, a new HR tend for 2023 has human resources taking on a much larger role when it comes to leading an organization’s digital transformation.
That's right... when it comes to promoting both a digital workforce and a digital workplace this new HR trend places much more emphasis on human resources leading the way.
This trend includes everything from implementing new digitally based talent development solutions to establishing digital systems to promote communication, engagement, and wellness.
According to a recent Deloitte survey, "Thirty-three percent of surveyed HR teams are using some form of artificial intelligence (AI) technology to deliver HR solutions, and 41 percent are actively building mobile apps to deliver HR services."
And while it's not just about hiring and onboarding, when it comes to the front-line hiring, there’s been much progress on automating the complete process in recent years.
While we’re still a long way from the full extent being realized, recent advances in AI technology are making fully digitized systems that can sift through applicants and identify top talent with unerring accuracy a tangible reality in the not-too-distant future.
Embracing a Culture of Coaching
Another big HR trend for 2023 is a shifting focus among HR departments from compliance and standards to culture and coaching.
With organizations now beginning to see the value of coaching, a shift in focus for HR departments away from rules and regulations and toward coaching and development is inevitable. With this in mind, HR leaders will need to transition their priorities to creating an environment that supports coaching and development.
That means hiring people who excel at coaching, and creating cultures that support coaching initiatives. This might mean taking a more strategic approach to standard operating procedures and regularizing coaching methods.
If a company wants to move from compliance to culture, it can begin by hiring people who are trained in coaching and have experience in creating a coaching environment.
Another way to transition from compliance to culture is to write regular coaching activities into standard operating procedures.
Facing the Diversity Challenge
The final HR trend for 2023 is to address the diversity challenge currently facing our workplace. With increasing numbers of organizations vowing to address the challenge of diversity, we’ll see HR departments continue rethink the way they operate in the coming year.
Diversity is about more than just hiring the right people for the job; it’s about creating an environment in which everyone feels valued and empowered to do their best work.
When asked the question, "why not just focus on hiring the best candidate for the job?" global diversity, equity, and inclusion thought leader Raven Solomon says:
"The truth is, most of our hiring culture is fraught with biases and isms (racism, sexism, ableism, gayism, classism, etc.). Even when we think we’re hiring the “best candidate,” unless we’ve done individual and organizational work to educate and manage biased decisions and eradicate isms through behavioral change and accountability, we are likely not hiring the best candidate."
Therefore, HR leaders can play a big role in solving the diversity challenge, but they’ll have to approach things from a different angle. Instead of hiring diverse candidates and then trying to fit them into the organization, they’ll have to work harder to ensure that their hiring practices are creating diverse candidates in the first place.
That may mean creating more inclusive job descriptions and adjusting hiring practices to make them more accessible to underrepresented groups.
It may also mean rethinking employee onboarding programs to help new hires integrate more quickly.
Our workplace is undergoing massive disruption and rapid change. From shifting employee expectations, advances in technology, the rise in remote work, and changing customer demands – HR must adapt to keep up.
One of the biggest HR trends for 2023 is the the rise of the employee experience and the focus on culture change how we think about HR.
In the past, HR was focused on hiring the right people, but now it’s about creating the right culture for those employees to thrive. There are many benefits to these changes, like reduced absenteeism and better employee engagement.
However, HR departments will also have to adjust to these changes, like hiring more coaches and focusing on diversity.
The future is bright for HR, and these changes will benefit businesses and employees.