Pop culture is full of references regarding the employee’s fight against the employer. Whether it’s “working for the man” or classic Dilbert comics, society has always carried with it a theme of the worker against the company. A new report released this year by Mercer seems to indicate that there is the possibility that we are at the start of new theme. A theme where the company puts the employee first.
Yes. It may be a pie in the sky dream, but there now seems to be opportunities in the market for employees to find employers that are very people-centric. The 2018 Mercer Global Talent Trends study helps add to that feeling of opportunity.
From their annual report, Mercer has decided to highlight the following things they appear to be trending in the workplace.
- CHANGE@SPEED: The C-suite believes we are entering a state of permanent transformation – of structures, cultures and people that have regeneration in their DNA. The ability to change, and change at speed, is emerging as a core competency itself. Change agility requires a quickened pace of learning and giving more power to individuals. The challenge is balancing empowerment and governance, and efficiency versus reskilling for tomorrow. Half of executives predict at least one in five roles in their organization will cease to exist by 2022, but HR reports mixed confidence in being able to identify jobs that will be displaced and how to effectively and proactively reskill employees.
- WORKING WITH PURPOSE: Employees crave meaningful work: 75% of thriving employees – those who are fulfilled personally and professionally – say that they work for a company with a strong sense of purpose (almost double those who don’t feel like they are thriving). Yet firms are out of sync, with only 13% of organizations differentiating their EVP with a purpose-driven mission today.
- PERMANENT FLEXIBILITY: The quest for flexibility is even more pronounced in 2018: most employees want their organization to offer more flexible work options than they do today. The good news is over 80% of executives view it as a core part of their organization’s value proposition (up significantly from 49% last year). The bad news is that organizations are still grappling with how to apply flexible working fairly, with just 3% reporting that they are industry leaders in this area.
- PLATFORM FOR TALENT: It appears that lots of HR professionals are feeling the pressure to build the workforce for the future at the speed that matches executives’ appetite for growth. The answer comes in moving away from traditional HR models and embracing a platform approach that matches skill supply with work demand through enhanced data and analytics. With two in five organizations planning to “borrow” more talent in the next 12 months this moves HR in the right direction. And this mandate is coming from the top with executives anticipating the greatest ROI this year from talent investment will be speeding up the movement of jobs to people and people to jobs.
- DIGITAL FROM THE INSIDE OUT: Organizations continue to lag on delivering a consumer-grade experience for employees. Only 15% of C-suite executives describe their organization as a digital employer. Those that are digital report a stronger ability to change and more involvement from HR in managing talent. This year enhancements to performance management and learning systems are in focus, but greater value might be unlocked by doubling efforts around analytics and how to enable remote working and virtual collaboration.
The study collected input from 800 business executives and 1,800 HR leaders, as well as 5,000+ employees across 21 industries and 44 countries around the world. Mercer gathered these voices to analyze how both employers and employees are reimagining the future of work. The study identified top talent trends, which can be useful for companies who are trying to stay ahead of the game when it comes to employee satisfaction. You can download the complete report here. Their infographic can be found here.