2023 has been a year of transformation and adaptation in HR. From embracing AI to navigating flexible working models and addressing the cost of living, these trends continue to shape the way we manage and support our employees today – and we think they’ll be featuring highly in 2024 too. Have a look at our predictions for the hottest topics that will continue to impact businesses like yours, and how you might consider responding to them…
AI: Your HR Ally
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has firmly established itself as a valuable HR ally, and it’s set to embed even more in the coming year. Whether it’s streamlining your hiring process, predicting employee turnover or offering personalised training plans, AI has transformed HR operations. We think that more businesses will consider adopting it for these functions in 2024:
Automated CV and Candidate Screening: AI algorithms can analyse applications, helping you identify qualified candidates quickly and focus on more strategic aspects of the hiring process. Chatbots can engage with candidates, ask preliminary questions, and provide information about the company and job roles.
Personalised Onboarding and Ongoing Development: AI can tailor your onboarding process to individual employees, providing relevant information and training materials based on their roles and backgrounds, and even plotting and tracking personalised development plans for ongoing career growth. You can also use chatbots to answer Frequently Asked Questions about company policies, benefits, and procedures.
Predictive Analytics for Retention: AI can analyse various factors to predict which employees are at risk of leaving the company, giving you a chance to address any issues proactively.
Employee Feedback Analysis: if you put out surveys, reviews, and other sources to identify trends and areas for improvement in the workplace, AI can analyse the results for you – giving you more time for acting on the feedback and planning improvements.
The Cost of Living
The ever-increasing cost of living hasn’t gone unnoticed by employees, or businesses – and introducing your own cost-saving strategies while maintaining employee morale is a delicate task. The crisis isn’t set to ease in the short term, either, so it will continue to be an issue front-and-centre for everyone in 2024. We have some suggestions for balancing these difficult financial times for your business with the financial wellbeing of your people….
Flexible Work Arrangements: remote work options or flexible hours may help your people to save on commuting and childcare costs and improve their work-life balance. Consider compressed workweeks, job-sharing, or allowing your team to choose their preferred work hours (within certain limits). For older employees approaching retirement, you could offer a phased exit schedule that gradually reduces their working hours while maintaining some income.
Reduce Attrition and Turnover: regularly review and adjust salaries and benefits packages to keep pace with inflation and market trends. Your employees’ salaries must be competitive and aligned with industry standards and the cost of living in your area – or your people will find other salaries that do meet those standards.
Financial Wellness Programmes: support employees in managing their finances with workshops or seminars on different aspects of financial management. You could think about partnering with financial advisors to provide one-on-one consultations, or online resources that help them plan for major life events like buying a home or preparing for retirement.
As well as the mention we gave under Cost of Living, flexible working in general has featured heavily on the agenda in 2023. It’s a trend that gained momentum during the pandemic and continues to be a major talking point. With employees seeking a balance between remote work and in-office collaboration, implementing a successful hybrid work model has been key. Finding the right rhythm can be a challenge, but it’s essential to meet the needs and preferences of your people for a better business all round. We think this will continue into 2024, so now is a good time to review what you can support as a business, should your people request it.
Employee wellbeing is a fundamental aspect of HR today, and that won’t be changing in 2024. It’s about creating a workplace culture that cares for both the mental, social, financial and physical health of your teams, as people as well as your employees. Wellbeing programmes, from stress management to mental health support, have become integral to creating a happier, healthier and more productive workforce. And as the cost of living continues to bite, having that support in place at work is going to make a big difference to many employees – and could make all the difference to your retention levels.
Diversity, Equality and Inclusion
Diversity is the spice of the modern workplace. This year, HR has continued to champion diversity, equality and inclusion. Nurturing an environment where every individual feels heard, valued and offering equal opportunities has become a top priority. Inclusivity is not just a goal; it’s a powerful driver of innovation and success. Check out our recent post on the many benefits it has for your business – 2024 will be the year to reap all those rewards.
No doubt there will be more change, and more curveballs unique to every business, in the year that lies ahead. But we firmly believe that anticipating themes like this should form a vital part of every business owner’s risk management strategy: it gives you the opportunity to consider how you might respond to the issues and seize the opportunities. If you’d like to investigate any of our predictions further for your business, we’d love to hear about it – especially if we can support you in any way. Give the Haus of HR team a call and we’ll help you navigate what the coming year holds.
We wish you and your teams a restful Christmas and a bright, energised New Year – ready for whatever 2024 may bring.