A recent article from HBR on HR’s seat at the table—or lack thereof—argues that HR has been underperforming for years. Our own research shows that HR too often lacks the information or insights to be truly strategic.
This lack of insight into workforce data may be part of the reason HR still is not a strategic arm of most companies. Our surveys show that only half (52%) of executives say workforce issues drive strategy at the board level, and nearly one-quarter say that workforce issues are an afterthought in business planning.
What can executive leadership and HR do to drive the company forward? According to Carol Anderson at HBR, it’s about taking a holistic approach to talent:
All of the sub-disciplines of HR—recruiting, employee relations, performance management, compensation and benefits, and learning & development—have to work together to figure out what customers (the employees and leaders of the organization) need, educate them on risk, and engage them in the right solutions. HR cannot afford to think in silos, offering ‘products and services’ that simply add work to the already overburdened front-line manager.
You can read the full article here.
Offering the right benefits and incentives is critical for companies looking to attract and retain the best employees.
Our Workforce 2020 surveys show that competitive compensation is the most important benefit for employees, followed closely by bonuses and merit-based rewards. Not only do employees say competitive pay is important–they also say more money would increase their loyalty and engagement with their current company.
But cash isn’t the only benefit that’s important to employees. Respondents also likely say career development, training opportunities, and a good work environment play a part in their loyalty to the company.
Héctor Cerviño of Banco Compartamos in Mexico (one of the HR executives we interviewed as part of our research) puts it well: “First of all, you have to pay well. It sounds very simple, but you have to pay well. If you pay well, then you can talk a lot about, you know, flex time, home offices…That’s all the cream in the coffee. But you have to have the coffee.”
We’ve been presenting the results of our Workforce 2020 research in a series of webinars and discussing the key themes of the program here on the blog, but for a deeper look at the survey data, be sure to download our reports.
You can access the research reports and infographics on the SuccessFactors landing page or at the Oxford Economics project page.
Be sure to let us know what you think.
There is still time to register for today’s webinar on one of the key themes of our Workforce 2020 research, What Matters Most at Work.
Ed Cone, Oxford Economics’ Technology Practice Lead, will be discussing the benefits and incentives that are most important to today’s employees with SAP’s David Swanson and IBM’s Sheila McGovern. Be sure to tune in—you can register here.
Our Workforce 2020 surveys show that companies are having a hard time finding employees with the right skills. For example, the need for skills in areas like analytics, cloud, and programming/development will grow sizably over the next three years, but less than half of employees expect to be proficient with most of these key technologies in that time. And abilities in vital specialties such as cloud and mobile lag compared to other technologies like programming/development and job-specific software.
This is a large-scale issue; in fact, US Vice President Biden recently published a report on federal education, workforce, and training programs that emphasizes the need for strong skills development opportunities.
In order to develop the technology skills they need within their organization, companies will have to focus more on supplying the right technology and training to their employees. Currently, less than half of employees say their company provides ample training on the technology they need, and less than one-third say their company makes the latest technology available to them.