Updated: Aug 18
Human Resources has been around a long time – many say the function dates back to the early 20th century. HR practices have evolved over the years to adapt to changes in the economy, technological advances, and to adapt to a new generation of workers with very different ideas of what employment should look like. In the early days of HR (when it was called “Personnel”), the function was largely driven by administrative paperwork, compliance and risk mitigation (think employee handbooks, policies, and procedures that ensured the company’s interests were prioritized and protected).
Modern HR is more focused on providing strategic value to drive outcomes and enhance culture and the employee experience. The focus is less on control and rigidity, and more on understanding and aligning the “people” strategy to business goals, and then supporting and empowering the employees to do their best work.
This modern approach to HR has allowed our team at AlchemyHR to serve clients in a relevant way that makes sense with today’s employment landscape.
A modern approach to HR is here to stay – and will continue to evolve. Here are 5 interesting trends we’re seeing:
“Old school” HR no longer works! HR is no longer just about enforcing rules. Blend the traditional practices that still make sense with modern practices that meet expectations for both employees and employers with trust, accountability and company culture in mind.
Meet people where they are. Make sure that your company’s employee value proposition aligns with the skills and experience they bring to the table. No one employee is alike, so it’s important to treat people like the individuals that they are. We’re not suggesting that you abandon consistency and accountability. Rather, in order to get the very best out of people, identify their strengths and play to those in order to maximize capabilities.
Hire differently. To maximize long-term success and growth, hire for characteristics like curiosity, potential, and capabilities – and less about work history and experience.
Embrace multi-generational workforces. Help employees acclimate and understand the value that can come from learning from those of all ages. While we tend to focus our diversity efforts on race, culture, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and religion, age plays just as important of a role in creating inclusive environments for individuals and therefore strengthening your teams with valuable insight and knowledge.
Utilize available technology. Technological advances continue to come - and at a more rapid rate than ever before. Use available technology to streamline processes and administration. Case in point, we find that employers typically only utilize a portion of the capabilities of their payroll/HRIS systems. They’re paying for 100%, and leveraging closer to 60-70%.