This paper discusses the factors that influence the evolution of HR practices. There have been profound shifts in the marketplace that has led to a change in the way organizations perceive business strategies and processes. Major factors that have influenced future evolution of HR practices are the advancement in technology, customer needs, demographic factors and globalization leading to more competition .
Factors affecting evolution of HR practices
Below are three major factors that can have a major influence on future evolution of HR practices:
Technology plays a vital role in affecting future of HR practices. With the increasing use of technology in today’s era in HR practices such as planning and delivery, organizations will change their perceptions towards HR in the future. The influence of technology has not been uniform. It varies by industry and occupation. Technology has both positive and negative impact leading to evolution of HR practices. Technology increases demand for manufacturing jobs but, decreases demand for clerical jobs. With technological advancements, some firms may choose customization as basic strategy to compete while other firms may choose to stick to traditional practices. Customization increases demand for skilled workers and attains higher productivity through the adoption of technology. Firms that choose traditional work practices produce products that are less customized and therefore, require less skilled talent. Such firms do not experience large gains as they have not been responsive to technological advancements .
Changing demographic trends, such as, decrease in population growth and worker retirement, are leading towards labor shortage for organizations. In future, there might be difficulty in recruiting, sustaining and engaging talent in an organization .
Economies have now been integrated with the passage of time. Globalization has given opportunities for businesses to expand in different markets and countries. Diversity in workforce and customer base has increased. Due to the globalization factor, there have been numerous changes in HR practices .
In context with service industry
The industry that I would like to be hired in future is service industry. While analyzing the impact of the above-mentioned factors on the service industry, the positive influence that a firm can have in service industry are numerous. More creativity and innovation can be brought in service industry through technological advancements and globalization. Customization can be brought to the service industry which can bring a competitive edge over the competitors in the industry. However, the negative impact from the above three factors is that there would be more competition, uncertainty and complexity in the business environment .
How to cope with challenges
There are certain measures that HR can take in order to evolve with the environmental pressures successfully. Firstly, HR should have an acute future orientation. It should realize and understand the problems that might be occurring in the future. HR should respond to the changes immediately that are occurring within the environment. In order to bring responsiveness, HR needs to be flexible and creative. With the advancement in technology and shifts in globalization, there would be a need for organizations and HR leaders to excel in new locations, with new customers and with new workforce. Moreover, HR needs to deliver value to its employees. Delivering value was once associated with customers only. But, now it has been associated with employees as well.
Moreover, HR professionals need to remain competitive in the marketplace. In order to do so, they must possess the following skills which would help them compete with the challenges :
With the advancements in technology, HR needs to welcome new changes. Social media is now developing which requires digital skills. On-premise systems are now being replaced by remote systems .
Interpersonal and communication skills
There will be a dire need for creativity and brainstorming skills in future HR practices. A command-and-control type of organization would make a shift towards a collaborative style. Focus will be on teamwork and relationship building skills .
Risk leveraging skill
The future business environment brings uncertainty and complexity. HR should have the skills of agile thinking and the ability to prepare for different situations. HR should possess the skill to leverage risks so that it would not hurt the company dealing with complexity .
Global operating skills
Global operating skill is considered important in order to cope with future challenges that HR would face. Firms would have to penetrate in new market segments across different countries. Understanding international business has been identified as a key to challenges posed by globalization .
HR function is the best management function when it comes to understanding and dealing with the dynamic situations of business environment. The fast-changing environment has put forward new HR challenges. If HR leaders wish to become effective leaders of their organizations, they need to restructure about their traditional roles. HR managers and leaders must understand the factors affecting HR and try to be as responsive as they can to the changes occurring in the environment .
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