Reinventing HR in a Prolonged Economic Upswing

Recruiting, during a prolonged economic recovery can be a very difficult task, according to the Deloitte’s 2019 Global Human Trends report. The firm says HR departments must “step up to assess capabilities, embed learning, promote mobility and take full advantage of technology.” Learning stood out as the most important trend this year. In Canada, the number-one reason survey respondents said they are looking outside their companies for new talent was due to employees’ inability to learn fast enough. This is different from the answers of global respondents, who believe the driver for acquiring external talent was about accessing new capabilities proliferating outside the organization. 

Also, 66% of respondents rated the ability of their learning function to meet evolving workforce needs as ‘fair’ or ‘inadequate’. This is 16% higher than the global response. A key capability in this area is experiential learning, which 59% of Canadian respondents indicated their organizations have ‘limited’ to ‘no use’.

“When you combine the exponential pace of change with the 100-year life and the 50-60-year career, our research highlights a clear gap in how prepared Canadian organizations are to equip their employees with the constant learning opportunities needed to adapt,” said Jodi Baker Calamai, who leads Deloitte Canada’s HR transformation financial services practice. “We need to rethink the concept of learning and create experiences that cultivate growth multiple times throughout the day.”

The report states that depending on an organization’s readiness and need to change, reinvention can happen in one of three ways. You can refresh: Update and improve the way things happen now. You can rewire: Create new connections that change the strategic direction. Or you can recode: Start over and design from scratch. Either way, there are two aspects of the reinvention that remain constant says Deloitte: it must involve technology in some way and it must be a bold enough change to meet the challenges that the social enterprise presents.

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