Last Year in HR Seems Like 10 Years Ago
Friday, May 26th 2023
In the dynamic realm of human resources and company management, challenges and priorities constantly evolve to adapt to changing circumstances. How much do things change in a short period of time? This blog explores the top issues faced by companies and HR teams in 2021, delves into their subsequent changes in 2023, and emphasizes the significance of continuously understanding the ever-changing voice of the employee. Last year was only last year but it sure seems like forever ago!
Work from Home:
In 2021, remote work emerged as a vital response to the pandemic, transforming the way businesses operated. HR teams grappled with establishing effective communication channels, maintaining employee engagement, and addressing potential burnout issues associated with remote work. Company leaders navigated uncharted territories to adapt their policies and technologies accordingly.
By 2023, work from home has evolved into the hybrid work model and workers are now experts at the technologies of virtual collaboration and distance communication that were so foreign a short time ago. Companies have realized the benefits of flexible work arrangements and have incorporated them into their long-term strategies. HR teams are focused on creating a supportive infrastructure that combines in-person and remote work, ensuring productivity, collaboration, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
Return to the Office:
In 2021, the question of when and how to return to the office safely was a paramount concern for companies. HR teams faced the challenge of implementing health and safety protocols, redesigning office spaces, and addressing employees' concerns about their physical well-being.
In 2023, as many organizations have gradually resumed office operations, the focus has shifted to employee comfort and creating a sense of belonging. HR teams prioritize initiatives that enhance the employee experience, redesigning office layouts to foster collaboration and creativity, and implementing flexible schedules to accommodate individual needs.
In 2021, the ongoing pandemic deeply impacted businesses worldwide. HR teams had to manage the emotional and mental well-being of employees, provide resources for remote work, and ensure a safe working environment. The pandemic accentuated the need for resilience, adaptability, and empathy within company cultures.
By 2023, while the pandemic still has some lingering effects, organizations have adapted to the "new normal." HR teams continue to prioritize employee health and safety, monitor vaccine policies, and implement effective crisis response plans. Company cultures have become more empathetic and flexible, recognizing the importance of work-life balance and employee well-being.
The Great Resignation:
In 2021, the Great Resignation emerged as a significant issue, with many employees reevaluating their career choices due to the pandemic's impact. HR teams were challenged to understand and address the underlying causes of employee dissatisfaction and implement retention strategies to counteract the talent drain.
In 2023, the Great Resignation has spurred organizations to place a stronger emphasis on employee engagement and satisfaction. HR teams actively listen to the voice of the employee, conduct regular surveys, and create feedback mechanisms to proactively address concerns. Companies strive to cultivate a positive employee experience, build a supportive company culture, and provide growth opportunities to retain top talent.
Employee Retention and Layoffs:
In 2021, the economic uncertainty resulting from the pandemic led to difficult decisions regarding employee retention and layoffs. Many HR teams were struggling with retention and hiring the workers they desperately needed to continue being productive. HR teams had to balance the financial stability of the organization with the well-being of employees, ensuring transparent communication and providing support during challenging times.
By 2023, employee retention remains a priority for organizations. HR teams recognize the value of investing in professional development, career advancement opportunities, and recognizing employee contributions. However, with the effects of inflation, interest rate increases, global instability and economic slow downs, some organizations may still face the need for layoffs.
Staying On Top of Change
There is no doubt that the last few years have been significantly tumultuous for HR teams and company leaders. One of the greatest challenges was trying to understand a workforce that was larger, more diverse, and geographically dispersed than ever before. It is clear that old technologies and processes like “the yearly survey” cannot keep up with the pace of change in the modern workforce. Next generation AI-based People Analytics software like Scanta’s TruPulse are needed for an automatic, continuous and real-time understanding of employees to maximize employee engagement and improve the employee experience. See how companies are embracing AI to solve their biggest HR challenges.