In the past year and a half, things have changed at a faster pace than we could have ever anticipated. With the pandemic, the social landscape shifted, but technological advancements did not stop. Now, the advancements in technology and the shifting workforce dynamics are turning the world upside down. Amidst these changes, HR managers are constantly dealing with the riding economic currents and cultural changes. Most of their efforts are directed towards retaining the workforce and recruiting new talent.
Therefore, as we move into 2022, there are some key challenges that the Human Resources department faces. Whether these challenges emerge due to external factors or internal, they serve as significant impediments to corporate success. Let’s discuss how businesses can overcome them.
1. Reskilling and upskilling
Reskilling or upskilling is the procedure of encouraging employees to develop abilities to take up new work roles within the company. It’s a feasible alternative to terminating employees and hiring someone new with different skills for a job. This trend has increased drastically since the pandemic. As each industry continues to evolve, companies are faced with newer challenges every day as the markets become fiercely competitive. During these times, when recruitment takes up massive resources that the company can’t afford, reskilling or upskilling an employee serves as a feasible solution.
For this purpose, HR will have to review the budget and possibilities of reskilling their employees. Moreover, they also have to consider the available opportunities and means to execute this strategy. A thorough analysis of the company budget and resources will help them know if it’s a feasible solution or not.
In today’s technology-driven era, organizations can benefit from eLearning programs to upskill and reskill their employee base. Whether they seek to upskill the marketing, supply chain, or human resource workforce, online learning will prove manageable and affordable for them. What’s more, online business graduate degrees allow HR professionals to update their skillset and remain abreast of changing HR practices.
2. Employee engagement
Employee engagement was an issue even before the pandemic. However, with the online shift of businesses, companies are struggling more than ever to keep their employees active and motivated. The reason is that engaged employees are the driving force of a business that leads to its advancement. Their positive attitudes, high productivity ratio, and innovative thought processes help organizations grow and thrive. In contrast, disengaged employees with negative attitudes only drag the company down. Hence, as employee engagement decreases, so does overall work effectiveness and efficiency. Eventually, companies lose their competitive advantage in the market. In these times, companies turn towards HR to figure out a solution.
The HR begins by determining the reason behind the lack of satisfaction among the employees and what causes disengagement. Perhaps they’re not happy with their current paycheck, or the responsibilities are stressful to handle. There are also mental and safety issues that can raise concerns. In these cases, finding common ground helps HR raise morale and manage responsibilities better.
3. Continuation of remote work
Remote or hybrid working started as a necessity during the pandemic. However, as the days pass, it has become a new normal as companies realize that remote working is just as efficient and costs less. According to Gartner, 31% of all the workers around the world will be working remotely or in hybrid mode in 2022. While many employers wish workers would come back and work in person, they also realize that remote and hybrid working is feasible. Hence, employers must balance between the requirements of their employees and the needs of the organization and develop strategies accordingly.
The responsibility of HR, in this case, would be to develop a stage where the company can conduct remote work successfully. They must offer proper tools for working and productivity and implement expectations through a viable communication platform.
4. Hiring challenges
The paradigm shift during the pandemic where people got to scale back on work created more time for their families, hobbies, and other activities. People began to realize that their time is worth more than what is offered, and the purpose of their life isn’t just to spend 9 hours a day working on the computer. As a result, many companies still rigid in the old ways of working face hiring challenges. They have plenty of vacancies available, but no one willing to work in their organization. Therefore, companies now have to adapt to the new demands of workers, overcome recruiting challenges, and create policies that result in happy employees.
Therefore, as we march into 2022, HR must leverage technology and innovative strategies to combat this issue and create a new working model for the company. They must recognize the potential of the employees they need and offer wages and benefits accordingly.
The pandemic has brought up new, unforeseen challenges for businesses worldwide. It has pushed everyone into unchartered territory, the likes of which were never seen before. In addition to that, businesses are forced to upgrade and adapt quickly, creating uncertainty in industries. However, no hurdle is difficult enough if people truly come together to create a solution. For this reason, HR must resume leadership positions and put their experience, creativity, and innovative ideas to work to overcome these new challenges.