Article: What will the future bear for human resources?

Organisations are now considering how their services will evolve in the future, especially in areas like human resources that are central to an enterprise’s performance. It’s hard not to see major trends like the integration of digital technologies as fundamentally altering the way businesses are operating.

While gazing into the future is by no means a foolproof endeavour, the developments currently underway are likely to continue to shape the sector and inform its development.

Ahead of the 2015 NZ HR Conference, Strategic Pay’s CEO John McGill outlined his thoughts on how technology is will affect human resources.

“In the next five to ten years we see businesses becoming very technology dependent – that’s pretty obvious to us and it’s something we have invested a lot into,” said John. “If clients want to wake up at 2 am and access surveys and data and they are in Brussels or Cairo, they can do that as long as they have an internet connection.”

The growth of technology in human resources has also continued at a strong pace. According to research published by Statista, global revenues for cloud-based human resources software will reach US$14.71 billion in 2016, compared to only $10.2 billion in 2010.

Data vs behavioural analysis

Over the next decade, it’s clear that data is going to play an increasingly important role in HR efforts, as the full potential of this technology becomes apparent. Once the role of technology has matured within HR departments, it’s possible that behavioural disciplines will become more important in human resources, as companies develop a more nuanced people-management strategy.

According to John, “the understanding of how best to position people in the right jobs could become a lot more sophisticated, with human resources playing just one part of this. We see elements of this at the moment but it’s a difficult one to accurately predict.”

Behavioural data which combines these two sets is another area that could see further growth, as organisations seek out more nuanced and in-depth analysis of HR trends.

The evolving pay landscape

While data is currently treated as supplementary to an organisation’s strategy, the future will see this level of information become an expectation for every HR decision, rather than simply a useful addition. Coupled with more advanced remuneration packages across every pay grade, businesses will likely call for data and analytics that can keep pace with these changes.

Predicting the future of a sector like human resources is notoriously difficult and new trends are likely to emerge that we cannot currently comprehend. However, the growth of technology and data will continue to be one of the single largest developments in the sector, making it something companies need to address head on.

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