Digital HR in the age of transparency
Remember when companies used to ban employees from using social media? It didn’t keep the lid on bad publicity then – and it certainly wouldn’t now.
With over 2.51 billion people worldwide using social networks, forward looking companieshaven’t just dropped their gagging policies. They’ve embraced Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn andall the rest, along with the transparency these networks bring. More than that, companies nowrecognise that from mobile devices to cognitive computing, analytics to the cloud, digitaltechnologies are everywhere. And these technologies have fundamentally disrupted theworkplace–especially the way businesses recruit, manage and support their people.
All this is happening at a time when demographics are also rapidly changing. The top talentneeded to drive business growth is not only getting harder to find–fuelling a new round of talentwars. It’s also increasingly mobile and diverse, with the multi–cultural, multi–generationalworkplace, and all the challenges that it brings, are fast becoming the norm.
In this brave new world companies are looking for new methods of engaging the people theyneed to attract and hold on to and enhancing the employee experience. That’s a task that falls largely on HR, which is responding by taking on the role of steward and designer of new peopleprocesses, according to the latest human capital trends report from Deloitte2. “The mission ofthe HR leader is evolving from that of ‘chief talent executive’ to ‘chief employee experience officer’,” say the report’s authors.
“HR is being asked to simplify its processes, help employees manage the flood of information at work, and build a culture of collaboration, empowerment, and innovation. This means that HR is redesigning almost everything it does–from recruiting to performance management toonboarding to rewards systems.”
Blurring the functional boundaries
To create an employee experience that matches the best customer experience, HR leaders intheir new role as chief employee experience officers need to form partnerships with theircounterparts in marketing and IT.
Some commentators go further, predicting that digitalisation will end up blurring the boundariesbetween HR and other functions. “Eventually, HR and talent processes and the technology thatenables them will no longer constitute their own domain or even be primarily performed by a central HR function,” says blogger Borja Burguillos.3 “Rather, many aspects of HR and talent management will become fully embedded in how work gets done throughout an organization,thereby becoming an everyday part of doing business.”
Reaching for the prize
For now, HR leaders need to understand how consumer–focused technologies can be leveragedinside a company. That can mean making social networking available internally to encourage collective problem solving or even using crowd mechanics to boost employee engagement.
A tall order? Maybe. But as Tonya McKinney and William Quinn of Tata Consultancy Servicesargue in a recent article4, there’s a big prize for any HR team that manages to leap into thedigital future. “HR has explosive potential to bring digital capabilities in house and drivebusiness improvements — far beyond using LinkedIn for recruiting,” they say.
“If HR applies and masters game and crowd mechanics for enterprise performance, HR, notmarketing, will become the enterprise’s new digital innovators.”
1 Source: Statista: Number of social network users worldwide 2010 to 2020
2 Deloitte: Human Capital Trends 2016
3 “Why Digital is changing HR?” https://borjaburguillos.com/why-digital-is-changing-hr/
4 Human Resources: Key to the Organization’s Digital Success, sites.tcs.com
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