Why 2021 is the Year of the HR

It has been more than a year of remote work now. While the year 2020 was about adjusting to a new way of working, not to mention a new way of living life altogether, 2021 has been more about going beyond the challenges in order to make a difference. The long period of remote work has transformed the workplace as we knew it, and while many earlier practices are no longer relevant, the needs of employees has also evolved since. We know that evolving employee needs call for a change in HR processes and so the year 2021 presents a huge opportunity for the HR teams to redefine policies and introduce something new that makes a difference in the lives of the remote workforce.

The pandemic has led to a major overhaul in the way we approach work, and that too in the shortest period of time. Interestingly enough, many HR teams across the globe are taking an all new approach to cater to the evolving needs of the employees. So, what are the things that the HR team can implement to emerge as the hero during these times of crisis? Let us have a look.

1] Incorporating the Use of Advanced Technology
A study by Future Workplace and Mursion showcases that 72% HR team are planning to use virtual reality simulations for training by 2022 to improve the learning experience for the employees.

Earlier, many HR teams across the globe were stuck with the manual paper-based HR management system, but the pandemic has forced them to consider an automated HR software. In a way, the remote work mandate has fueled a sort of HR technology revolution for many HR teams and it seems this is just the beginning. Today, the HR teams are seriously considering the scope of incorporating the use of the latest technology like AI, Machine Learning, NLP, Virtual Reality and even Augmented Reality. The move towards virtual mediums might have been a necessity and less of a choice for the HR, but they are happy to see this as the beginning of a future defined by advanced HR technology.

2] Understanding the Significance of HR Analytics
The current times of remote work have been a challenge for the employees, as many of them are fighting the monotonous feeling of working in isolation. In times of crisis like this, it is important to understand what the employees are going through and if they need something that can help. But the question is, how does the HR figure this out?

The solution comes in the form of HR Analytics, or People Analytics as it is otherwise known as. The new age HR software platform offers advanced HR analytics capabilities, which can help the HR team. What’s more, the survey management platform offered by many of the new age HR technology platform also enables the HR team to connect with the employees and understand their concerns. There are many enterprises that have used the survey management platform of an HR software to successfully conduct a Covid-19 vaccination drive for all the employees. Now, that’s what we call a smart use of an exiting tool, don’t you think so?

3] Understanding the Significance of Employee Wellbeing
Before we knew anything about the pandemic, if you would ask any employee about the list of benefits they expected, they would most likely mention things like office gyms, club memberships, paid vacations, and the likes. However, the pandemic has forced us to stop and think about the uncertainty that life brings, and today people’s priorities are changing. The fancy benefits are no longer a priority for people as they worry about job security and the well-being of themselves and their loved ones. So, the HR teams are organizing counselling sessions, virtual healthcare sessions by medical experts, and also vaccination drives for employees and their families.

4] Taking Steps to Boost Employee Morale
Last but not the least, these are the times of crisis and stress, when the uncertainty has made employees lose their confidence and worry about job security. In such a scenario, there are many ways the HR can boost employee morale. To begin with, the HR can conduct motivational sessions for the all the employees, help them find answers to their health-related queries through medical sessions, and plan to rewards them for their accomplishments. The HR professionals say that workplace recognition is more important at this time than it was ever before. Internal job postings are also another great way to motivate the employees and make them feel valued and appreciated. 

5] Planning Training Sessions for the Future
As HR experts say, remote work is here to stay. Most leading enterprises in the world today are looking at a largely remote workforce even after the effects of the pandemic subside, while others are most likely to opt for a hybrid workforce. So, HR teams are planning relevant training sessions to help their employees develop skills like conducting virtual trainings, virtual negotiations with clients, providing effective demos online, and more. It’s all about ensuring that the employees do not face any issues while interacting with others over a virtual medium.

So, we see that there are many ways in which the HR department can make a difference in the loves of the employees and also make the company future-ready. No wonder 2021 is a promising year for the HR professionals, with multiple opportunities to make things better. What else do you think the HR can do for the betterment of the organization and the employees during these times of crisis? Share your thoughts with us in the Comments box below. 

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