As trends and developments appear to zip by with each passing year, transformations in society, government, culture, technology, communications and even the legal landscape can all determine the ways in which employers handle their workplaces.
With a growing emphasis on paid leave and new laws as well as the latest tech and employee behavioural traits, it appears that HR managers have their hands full as well and that there are just as many challenges as there are good trends coming up this year.
Here are some things your Human Resource Management personnel should be paying attention to in 2019.
Falling into the diversity trap
You could call creating more diverse workforces part of a trend and yet, it seems that many employers still don’t understand that diversity goes beyond gender, race and religion.
There are many other factors that can contribute to a well-rounded team such as work experience, educational status, socioeconomic status, life experience, background and values.
Diversity can, in fact, come with challenges as companies try to make sure they are building a culture that’s inclusive, tolerant and respectful.
By immersing yourself in data, creating relationships that are holistic and even introducing new spectrums of partners, you may also be able to rise above the generic diversity issue.
Dealing with workplace violence
A workplace that’s free of hazards of any kind should be a priority and yet, workplace violence can still remain a rather tricky/difficult issue to resolve.
Shoving, hitting, slapping and grabbing all constitute forms of physical abuse, however, threats of violence and indecent acts like stalking all fall within the broad category of workplace hazards.
Conduct assessments to help ensure that proper policies, practices and procedures are put in place. Increase awareness and initiate swift action if any cases occur.
Bad hiring decisions
Don’t forget about the hiring process. Hiring the wrong people can be detrimental to your organisation’s productivity. Remove bad apples quickly before too much damage is done.
Growing pressure to mend turnover rates and an expectation to develop or foster better employees (instead of firing them) can lead to your employees having to work with troublesome coworkers. This can get pretty toxic pretty fast. Even if letting people go at the right time feels difficult, don’t be afraid to act quickly if you have to.
Keeping your workplace cyber-safe
With all the technology in the workplace, cyber safety should be at the forefront of your HR practices.
The potential for catastrophic breaches can increase as tech gets more advanced.
Security tools such as firewalls, two-step or biometric authentication methods as well as encrypted data in the cloud should all be components of how you think about protecting private and confidential information within your organisation.
Your third-party vendors should also prioritise security.
Finetuning communication and culture
Corporate communication and company culture (which can be seen as closely tied together) may still slip through the fingers of many employers.
When it comes to communication skills and systems, effectiveness can be a challenge. Whether you realise it or not, the failure to communicate may be causing issues within your organisation.
Potential communication issues can get out of hand if your organisation is a large one.
Investing in training, workshops and other initiatives that develop verbal and written skills, listening skills and other soft skills can help you manage/resolve this.
Optimising time management
HR professionals may complain that they are expected to do it all, find the right people, train new hires and reinforce the organisation’s core values, all with a smile on their faces.
This can, of course, cause seemingly insurmountable time constraints. Systemise processes and turn them into segments of work that your team members can realistically accomplish.
Focus can be a big part of tackling this challenge. You should also develop your own skills and get adept at sorting tasks and organising initiatives.
A lack of investment
While much may be expected of HR managers, you could find that there isn’t much that can be done if upper management isn’t willing to invest.
Competitive salaries, workplace benefits, game rooms, staff outings and free food all cost money, right?
While the reduction of manual HR processes and the power of automation can bring many opportunities, it shouldn’t change the fact that leaders have to cooperate as well.
Investment may be costly but losing employees can cost much more in the long run.
The employee drug use conundrum
You may have come across tales of opioid addiction in the workplace and a growing appeal for marijuana use for medical/recreational purposes in many countries.
This can make it quite difficult to help your workforce operate in a safe, productive and (yes, drugfree) environment.
To address this issue, employers should consider introducing new drugfree policies that prohibit or at least limit the use of drugs on the premises or during working hours.
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