Now that everyone has settled back into work, it’s been great to hear from all of my clients and candidates and get a feel for what might lie in store for the HR industry in 2024.
Having researched online and through conversations with my clients and candidates, I know 2024 is set to be a year of significant shifts and trends that will affect businesses as a whole and the HR function specifically. These trends will impact employees, the ability to have the necessary skills to succeed and their knowledge of how to use new technology ethically.
Here are the top five trends that I think will be impacting the HR industry in 2024:
Integration of AI
This year, AI has certainly been the topic of conversation, with ChatGPT followed by Bing, being some of the first Generative AI to show this technology can alleviate the burden of tasks and be augmented into our working lives.
Whether you like it or not, AI is here to stay, and it’s set to be even more significant in 2024 as more and more industries adopt it. AI is set to impact every section of a business, but HR is explicitly seeing major augmentation of AI into its function. Using AI to write job descriptions, summarise new and existing policy documents, or answer basic questions based on company information. The HR teams that figure out how to leverage these tools will be able to focus more on strategic work that can positively impact the employee experience.
Tech skills gap
Technology evolves faster than the workforce can upskill, leaving gap. This year, HR teams will be hugely important in working out what skills will be necessary shortly as AI becomes more capable, meaning some parts of your job can be automated. Most companies have inadequate training programs to deal with technological changes, so a considerable investment into better training programs would be ideal to stay ahead.
For businesses to retain valuable investments like staff, they must offer a genuine reason for their workers to be loyal, fostering a culture of reward and recognition and offering opportunities for continuous development and learning. Employees – particularly good ones – will always want to move on to new challenges. However, focusing on retention strategies means the best people are likelier to remain happy and engaged.
Managing opportunities and challenges around the ongoing shift towards flexible working arrangements will be high on the agenda of all HR professionals, particularly those working for larger organisations. A more positive attitude toward flexible working comes from the Flexible Working Bill passed in 2023. Employees across the UK will be given even more flexibility over where and when they work and the right to request flexible working from day one of a new job. While it offers the chance for greater employee satisfaction and to attract talent from further afield, it also means businesses will have to overcome obstacles to developing a corporate culture, maintaining team cohesion, and ensuring consistent lines of communication and accountability are in place.
There has been a huge focus on employee wellbeing and mental health. HR departments will be at the heart of EVP options, such as working from home/flexible working. It’s also important that HR perpetuate the message that mental health is taken as seriously as physical health when it comes to sick leave as the
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