As 2019 draws to a close, Randstad US today released their annual expert predictions about what 2020 will bring to the workplace. Randstad executives and leaders from the human resources services industry share insights and advice for employers facing complex challenges, from establishing a meaningful diversity and inclusion (D&I) strategy to the growing importance of investing in their workforce through upskilling and other training programs.
“In 2020, we see a host of emerging trends stemming from the evolving expectations and preferences of today’s workforce pertaining to areas, like diversity and inclusion management as a strategic business decision, the responsible use of advanced technologies and data, upskilling as a critical investment and the power of technology on employer branding and reputation,” said Karen Fichuk, CEO, Randstad North America. “None of these are new trends — rather, they’re concepts that are finally reaching maturity. Organizations that understand the importance of incorporating these focus areas into their business discussions and strategic priorities will pull ahead of their competition in the year ahead.”
According to experts from Randstad, here are the four biggest trends impacting the workplace in 2020:
D&I management will be an essential part of corporate strategy
Putting D&I at the center of business strategy isn’t just a feel-good move: It’s crucial to increasing innovation, boosting revenue, improving hiring and retention outcomes and fostering connections with consumers. But companies must go beyond simply launching D&I initiatives to attract talent and work toward achieving gender parity in the workforce — they’ll have to craft comprehensive strategies that address the entire employee life cycle, from engagement to training, development, retention and more.
AI will (finally) become reality
It might feel like HR professionals have been discussing AI for some time, but 2020 will be the year when human employees and AI-powered machines begin collaborating on day-to-day work across industries on an unprecedented scale. It will also be the year companies find ways to derive meaningful value from it by synthesizing the insights AI provides and building a talent base that can support getting value out of AI.
Upskilling will become a more urgent employee demand, especially for younger generations
To attract and retain top employees, companies will have to make training, learning, development and providing opportunities for growth a priority in 2020 — not just for skills critical to business success today, but for those that will matter in the future as well. In particular, companies must address millennials’ and Gen Z’s expectations around learning and growth on the job and develop meaningful training programs that reflect them. That’s the only way to establish a competitive, sustainable talent pipeline going forward.
employer branding will mature and expand into new tech channels
Companies that are successful at managing their reputations and curating positive candidate and employee experiences in 2020 will have a far easier time hiring and retaining the talent they need to remain competitive. And as consumer preferences change, messaging and mediums will change in turn. Expect to see the most sophisticated employer brands exploring more visual channels (especially video and social platforms like Instagram) and leveraging employee ambassadors in inventive ways in the year ahead.
Every organization is different, but business leaders who take time to consider how these trends are impacting their companies will be well-equipped to keep their organizations creative, adaptable and profitable in the future. To view more takeaways from the HR experts at Randstad, check out the four workforce trends to watch in 2020.