I’ve always maintained that a company’s workforce is one of its biggest assets, but managing a balance between productivity, overheads and a motivated team is a challenge in today’s landscape. “In 2023, executives must get savvy to snag in-demand talent, focus on employee mental health and confront data ethics in new HR technology.” (Read more) What should we keep in mind when it comes to employment excellence in 2023?
We’re at the end of the first quarter of 2023. What a mad rush the first three months turned out to be. Everyone seems to be exhausted. But other than burnout, organizations today are having some brand-new workforce confrontations. According to gartner.com: “Organizations face historic challenges with a competitive talent landscape, an exhausted workforce, and pressure to control costs.”
- Quiet hiring in response to quiet quitting.
Quiet quitting might not be a new concept, but when it got a name, we realised that it became more than the exception to the rule. When employees only do the minimum at work, it is detrimental to productivity and morale. The response? Quiet hiring! Quiet hiring is adding skills and capabilities to the employee corps without introducing new full-time employees. This is done by mobilising internal talent, meeting the organisation’s needs through upskilling of existing employees and by being more flexible and involving alumni networks or temporary workers as required. Be careful though and do not pressure employees to commit to roles they’re not interested in. It might lead to their exit.
- Flexibility is here to stay.
Post-Covid employees demand more flexibility – from when they work to where they work from. Hybrid work is not possible for all types of jobs, but improving employee experience has become a priority for all companies – even when it only comes to employees having better control over their work schedules and paid leave. Flexibility is not all about where you work from, but it can help you maintain talent despite geographical limitations. Re-engage staff by helping them see their role in furthering the business. Be open to adjusting work objectives. Employees crave autonomy to set goals and exercise strategic thinking.
- Management is more difficult than ever.
Hybrid work might be what employees demand, but it is a challenge when it comes to establishing a connection with company culture. Managers continue to struggle with hybrid and remote work. Manager support and training should be on top of your list, as are clearer priorities when it comes to time allocation. HR needs to encourage managers to advance their top performers rather than hoard talent.
- Test tradition.
Chances are that job applications will challenge you. Not only might up to 56% of candidates applying for a position not have the relevant area of expertise, but traditional sourcing methods are also not as effective as they used to be. Being open-minded as to a candidate’s potential and less critical about qualifications might be quite a challenge for the average company.
- Ever-present Covid.
It’s hard to speak about anything without mentioning Covid and its influence on our mental health. Most of us have been re-evaluating our priorities and organizations will have to be sensitive to emotional resilience and be less judgmental and open to counselling. Employees still want benefits such as a competitive salary, the opportunity to develop and job security, but they are also expecting a holistic purpose, a supportive culture, and wellness. Employee stress levels are supposed to be at an all-time high with betterworks.com reporting that 46% of middle managers plan to quit their jobs in the next year because of work-related stress.
- Considering DEI.
It’s hard to imagine that anyone can be opposed to diversity, equity and inclusion, but according to the Gartner article, 42% of employees believe such efforts to be divisive. A diverse team is an asset, but it’s always better to address than ignore sentiments before they result in disruption in the workplace. Businesses must show strong values and a clear sense of purpose. While flexibility is a general demand, fairness, autonomy, a healthy work environment, an inspiring vision and a supportive environment also retain staff.
- Personal vs Private.
Personal vs Private can become a problem in a company’s support of employees. To support and cater to employee’s needs, data collection on health, mental wellbeing, living conditions, etc. can be helpful, but there is a risk that boundaries can be violated. All practices should be transparent and non-mandatory.
- Skills – but social skills.
Gen Z’s lack of experience when it comes to important social skills such as negotiating, networking, quiet confidence, social stamina and attentiveness, negatively impacts performance. Organisations need to have a new approach towards what is expected from their workforce to prevent burnout and ensure career security. Insecurity in the workplace is very counterproductive.