The past few years have, by many accounts, been the most disruptive years for HR teams. Most teams are still adjusting to the disruptions of volatility — ensuring employee engagement and readjusting hiring programs — with most teams working remotely. But we also know the best teams are those who choose to make the best out of a messy situation.
This presents a new horizon for how we think about building agile organizations that can adapt to an ever-changing world. Looking ahead, three key trends will define the future of HR.
The future of work arrives ahead of schedule
"There are decades where nothing happens, and there are weeks where decades happen," a quote by Lenin foreshadows a revival during the pandemic as most people and companies experienced a seismic shift in the way we work and live. For HR organizations, the pandemic didn't change the future, but it accelerated it. At the beginning of March 2020, about 30% of American workers worked from home, and just two weeks later, this number rose to 60%, according to Forbes.
We believe that the future of work is neither remote nor solely onsite but rather a hybrid model that provides both employees and employers with the proper flexibility when needed. Supported by a recent study from McKinsey & Company:
"The McKinsey Global Institute estimates that more than 20% of the global workforce could work the majority of its time away from the office and be just as effective".
Flexibility becomes the key to a competitive advantage
Key learnings from COVID-19 are that everything can change in days and weeks. For years, we've talked about how the companies can cope with change, best positioned in a world where new trends are constantly arising, and COVID-19 has accelerated this by 10x.
The takeaway for HR organizations is that agility needs to be built into the core of their workforce model. With some businesses starting to pick up again, now is the right moment to rethink workforce structure. A freelance workforce can help mitigate the gaps in the short-term and build a long-term competitive advantage by creating an agile contingent workforce.
A whopping 90% of business leaders believe that shifting their talent model to a blend of full-time and freelance workers can give them a future competitive advantage, according to Boston Consulting Group.
Freelancers enable companies to scale up gradually, giving them the ability to react to changes in business immediately and to access specialists with the capabilities to accommodate changing needs.
Access to talent and specialist skills will define tomorrow's winners
The coming years present a more significant challenge to the companies that rely on pre-COVID-19 talent attraction strategies.
The old limitations of geographic locations are no longer there, which has opened up the opportunity to access talent anywhere. Employees can now change jobs more frequently without the friction of moving to a new place every time.
This change opens up the opportunity for companies to recognize a new trend and focus more on hiring freelance specialists for 2-3 month-long projects to accommodate the constant increase in skillset needs.
In a study from Harvard Business School, CEOs point to the increase in skill shortages for evolving jobs as posing critical challenges to business owners. CEOs rank access to talent and specialist skills as the factors with the most impact on the future of work.
Consider hiring a freelancer to fill your talent needs. Worksome is an all-in-one solution for talent management, compliance, on-time payment, and accurate worker classification recommendations. Book a free demo today.