Brian Riddell, Head of Human Capital Management and Emma Morris, Human Capital Management Specialist, delaware
Digital transformation in business is accelerating dramatically, with the adoption of emerging technologies such as automation, AI, big data and the internet of things. The successful enterprises of the future will be those that can integrate both the human and digital dimensions, and redefine how people, processes and technology can work together to deliver the best business outcomes.
The balance between people, skills and adaptability is more crucial than ever. Embracing new technologies, such as robotic process automation (RPA) for example, can accelerate repetitive HR processes and allow HR departments to spend more time on collaboration, relationship building, qualitative decision-making and creativity. The role of technology as enabler is vital, then – but putting the human connection at the centre of business strategy will ultimately be the enduring factor.
As businesses become increasingly digitalised, HR departments will need to spend more time anticipating and predicting what new skills and roles will be in demand. Adaptability and agility are fundamental to future-proof success. In research conducted by the World Economic Forum, more than 70 per cent of CEOs recognise that a skills shortage will be one of the key issues facing businesses within the next 10 years. These in-demand skills are not technology-led, but human skills such as creative thinking, problem solving and high emotional intelligence. Organisations don’t recruit for these skills: they develop them within the lifecycle of each employee.
Mindset realignment is also essential to maintaining a successful digital workplace. Organisations must understand their employees’ needs, and therefore feedback, wider collaboration and decentralised decision-making are all key attributes to success. Businesses that embrace digital technology will create an open, collegiate work culture that channels support and personal development.
Cloud-based software such as SAP SuccessFactors, a highly integrated people-management system, can track interaction and trends with employees in real time to highlight issues such an attrition and disengagement. It can also support processes such as talent management, performance and goal-setting, learning, recruiting and compensation. Clearer insights combined with intelligent, faster decision-making processes enable companies to create an engaged workforce which is in tune with business goals, and allows businesses to channel more investment into factors such as human well-being. Happy employees mean happy customers.
Companies must apply the digital mindset to HR and workplace processes to support productivity, growth and competitiveness – or risk becoming obsolete.
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