Top Employers Institute highlights steps to reinvent the role of HR
HR professionals should go beyond ‘functional excellence’ and add value to their organisations.
As the COVID-19 pandemic put into spotlight companies’ people practices, the well-being of employees became an essential part for many, if not all businesses. They also had to adapt quickly and roll out programmes of such nature digitally amidst the shift to remote work.
Moreover, global social movements, such as Black Lives Matter and #MeToo, impacted businesses as well as human resource (HR) teams invest more in diversity and inclusion programmes.
The Top Employers responded and adapted to these imperatives with such speed that they proved their ability to blend people and technology in the most dynamic of ways. Their latest Top Employers Institute HR Best Practices Survey, presents the latest trends in HR strategies and people practices emerging from leading organisations across the world, as well as addressing themes that have arised.
According to the survey, 89% of Top Employers want to reflect employees desire to do good in the world and 86% align their talent acquisition policies and processes with their EVP to ensure a consistent employee experience.
People and businesses are now compelled to navigate the new world of work in an uncertain future, after being side-swept by the global health crisis.
Top Employers will have to rely on all their strengths to keep their teams happy, healthy, and hungry to perform better.
“HR leaders have the opportunity to build on the sharp lessons learned in order to redesign the new world of work in a way that brings closer alignment between business goals and healthy people practices,” according to the report.
However, as many organisations are now adopting work from home practices, employees need to have access to the right tools and support to boost retention and engagement in roles that traditionally showed high levels of turnover.
As with any type of relationship, however, the bond between employers and employees relies on mutual respect, trust, professionalism, and open communication.
Organisations also face a period of extreme volatility, and people will have to adapt and learn to deal with constant disruptions. Top Employers tackles the twin challenges of responding to the rapidly evolving business environment whilst ensuring their teams are ready to work together effectively.
Based on the report, the Top Employers training their employees on ‘how to live’ company values rose to 93%, a 4% increase from 89% in 2020 whilst 88% evaluate performance against organisational values as part of performance review, an uptick of 4% from last year.
Top Employers ranks change management as one of their highest strategic priorities for the year ahead, knowing that the pace of change looks set to be relentless.
“Rapid and unanticipated disruptions can shake the foundations of an organisation. Thus, HR leaders need to communicate proactively with their people, explaining the future skills needs envisaged for employees to prepare for the future,” the report stated.
Given the rapidly evolving business environment, many organisations are letting employees be more flexible with their performance objectives. Their report stated that 89% of top employers now allow flexible time-horizons when setting objectives.
Meanwhile, Top Employers Institute is professionalising the management of employee social groups, and implementing standards to ensure a stronger sense of purpose, good governance, and policies to make networks become more inclusive. Around 9 out of ten (86%) Top Employers in 2021 also said that benchmarking data has helped them improve their HR policies to grow as an employer of choice.
HR professionals need to go beyond “functional excellence” and find new ways to add value to their organisations as the roles of HR are being reinvented amidst a rapidly changing business environment.
Luckily, Top Employers Institute presents opportunities for HR in areas of change management, talent acquisition, career management, communication, and HR IT strategy.
“The goal should be to drive excellent business outcomes by solving the talent issues that are putting a brake on performance—whilst simultaneously playing the role of a moral guardian safeguarding people’s welfare and well-being,” the report stated.
Top Employers Institute noted that employees may be expected to take the initiative in their own development, but they should not be required to do it all themselves. At least 35% of top employers now offer dedicated career counsellors to their people.
“Providing sufficient human support, together with tools for managing career and development plans, is the optimal way for your employees to grow their careers in line with individual aspirations and business requirements,” Top Employers Institute said.
A 1970s Oil Crisis replayed in modern days
Workplace 3.0: Transforming work environments to support innovation and meaningful work
The race to gender equity for Asia’s startups
How Many Apps Does It Take to Change a Workplace?
In an era of zero-sum thinking, business leaders must unlock a mutually beneficial future