Each year, we see a plethora of work trends come and go that are usually contingent upon updated technology and new additions to the workforce. These trends take the form of initiatives that span wellness and wellbeing, talent mobility, and digital tools that are typically rebooted by a startup entering their respective space.  

These initiatives could be completely new inceptions or they could be a reformation of previous work trends that required an update and aligns with the new year or season. Staying in touch with emerging work trends that aim to evolve the future of work, healthily contributes to an employer’s brand and retention rate, as well as its progressive reputation fueled by good-natured culture. HR professionals have noticed each passing year’s impact of certain trends, with onboarding in the new world of work as a 2018 favorite. However, as we head into Summer, we think it’s the best time to break down the seven work trends coming out on top in 2019.  

People data: Collecting employee data is not an unfamiliar concept. Businesses collect data to better gauge the efficacy of recruitment, onboarding, and retention strategies while weaving social media behavior and company tech usage into their analysis. People data, a revved-up version of employee data, helps HR leaders peer into the wellbeing and engagement levels of employees, accompanied by traditional performance reviews and time-off. Internal messaging and other communication tools also offer insight as to the positioning of a business’ employees, crowning people data as the king of workplace understanding and prolonged contentment.

Take it from bob. Using your data can improve company culture, too! You’ll make a healthier and happier workplace that everyone will want to be onboarded into.

Cognitive AI: We know, we know. Your immediate thought was probably something like, “Robots! AI! It’s taking over our jobs and then – the world!” There’s no need to worry, though. AI is actually expected to increase the number of jobs available across 20 countries, diversifying roles in the process, and helping HR leaders stay on the same page as their people. This year, AI is expanding its departmental territory and dipping its technological toe into other best practices like SEO, social copy and blog content, and dataset analyses that are often too large for a human brain to compute and act on quickly.

bob recommends diversifying your people’s roles with tasks that teach them new things. This way, when AI robots do enter the workforce, your people are leaders who can help them grow!

Internal talent mobility: Alternatively known as multi-stage careers, internal mobility involves employee growth through internal and multidirectional talent sourcing. Employee engagement and company performance sees mass improvement when HR leaders and management work together to source their own talent, such as through an employee performance review, granting promotions and department changes to veteran hires. Mobility initiatives launched by businesses this year are slowly but steadily proving to be a major talent motivator and gain a competitive advantage. Effective internal mobility typically results from strong company culture, infrastructure, and incentives.

bob knows best when it comes to mobility. Use performance reviews to align personal goals with company goals so your people can plan for the future without actually waiting for the future.

Employee-led learning: Top-down teaching frameworks are losing steam in modern businesses. Employee-led learning is instead being instituted more frequently by HR leaders with the intent of empowering people to use their own abilities and take on unfamiliar tasks that inspire or intrigue them. Earlier this year, PageUp found an 80% increase in employees requesting approval from their managers to undertake new learning activities. These personalized learning paths guide employees developmentally, and content tailored to specific interests or needs is also perpetuating growth and employer loyalty long term.

bob loves to empower employees and you can, too! Be time flexible so your people can learn from each other inside of the office and at meetups, lectures, and courses outside.

Social collaborative tools: Social networking, instant messaging, and other forms of online collaboration used to be restricted in the workplace. Now at the height of its use and after accepting the benefits it has to offer, social collaborative tools are all the rage in the office. Channels of communication and connecting are a must, with video conferencing significantly simplifying global and remote team efforts. Humans are innately social, so it’s no surprise that 87% of employees feel team knowledge-sharing is critical for learning, while 34% of organizations have invested in social learning tools to boost performance.  

bob’s biggest tip is to actively engage your people. Try to embody a social media vibe at the office with social tools that are fun and familiar, where everyone can share quirky content.

Workplace happiness: Wellbeing is being reshaped into workplace happiness, with businesses starting to facilitate training in more critical areas of wellness related to resilience, mental health stability, and mindfulness. When considering your employees’ emotional health, administering a flexible wellness policy is a great place to start. But, 2019 has seen a growing concern for more purposive perks and most HR trends are founded by this matter. Work-life blending is doing away with work-life balance, and diversity and inclusion within both company culture and infrastructure are now key factors in fostering and maintaining workplace happiness.  

Hibob breathes happiness thanks to bob’s clubs and superpowers. Use your people’s hobbies and interests to help them bond, but don’t forget to ask how their home life is, too!

Human experience: Employee experience is a crucial element of company culture and one of the most promising work trends 2018 had to offer. Now, emerging trends in human resource management are all inlaid with human experience, as we strive to create meaning for each employee that surpasses their basic need to earn a paycheck and practice a learned skill. Up until now, employee experience focused primarily on perks and rewards, but human experience emphasizes growth and development that impacts someone’s future in a larger sense while encouraging positive contribution to the company and team they work with.

bob keeps employee experience at top of mind. Transparency creates a healthy environment and makes room for people to find meaning behind what they love to do as they progress, too!

These emerging work trends could be piggy-backing off another that preceded them or they could be entirely new to the HR industry. Regardless, HR trends in 2019 are instinctually updating themselves as others have on an annual basis. Each time this process occurs, HR professionals hit the refresh button and step up their game up as leaders in this ever-evolving field, continuing to prioritize wellness, digital tools, and talent mobility in the creative, analytical, and reinventive ways they decide.

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From Stephanie Stevens

Stephanie is Content Marketer at Hibob. She has a background in Clinical Psychology and Crisis Management, and enjoys abstract painting and watching horror films in her spare time. She believes that people can connect with themselves, their peers, and the world around them through creative writing, helping them foster a deeper sense of self and their life goals in the process.