3 HR tech trends to watch

September 16, 2021 | David Daly 5 Mins read

Technology trends in human resources keep coming thick and fast-2021 was a year of record investment in HR tech as companies and investors recognize the growing activity within the HR tech space and how some significant trends are capable of transforming this business-critical department.

There are a number of important reasons why investment in HR technology is on the rise-companies are growing and expanding at a faster rate than ever before so there is a greater need to manage people, processes and technology at multinational companies around the world.

As multinational organizations expand into new countries and territories, this inevitably results in the hiring of new employees. There is simply more activity happening and this places an additional burden on already busy HR departments. They are tasked with onboarding these new employees, training them and ensuring they have what they need to deliver their duties to the company.

All of this before we even mentioned a global pandemic that has swept the world! This makes things even more complicated-and you working culture is emerging where hybrid working will become the new normal at many global companies worldwide. Companies are also changing their hiring policies as a work from anywhere culture starts to take hold, this also means that companies are hiring regardless of location. Needless to say, this comes with a lot of legislation, policy, culture and working routine changes. There’s a lot to manage, and in this article we’re going to look at three HR tech trends that are on the horizon in response to these challenges-they may well become significant game changers.

Remote work technology upgrades

By now, everybody is familiar with remote working tools such as video conferencing and other collaboration tools. The HR department can expect to receive some upgrades to their own internal technology stacks in response who what are new ways to hire and on-board employees.

The pandemic has shifted many working processes online- HR recruitment and onboarding are no different. Some new offerings expected in the market later this year and beyond will first focus on making remote recruitment and onboarding easier for HR professionals and managers.

The recruitment process and HR duties do not stop after a successful candidate video interview-there is plenty left to do to move that candidate into their new team and role. HR professionals have a duty of care to on board any new candidate in the best way possible and in line with company policies.

This is not as easy as it looks to achieve without face-to-face interaction-but this new normal means that that face-to-face interaction might never happen as more and more companies are hiring remote workers in very distant locations.

This means all candidate validation, new employee background checks, document uploads, induction training and first day joining all have to happen in a virtual environment. There is an increasing need for technology support in the form of digital tools to ensure that all of this happens in a smooth and seamless way for both HR professionals and the individual candidates. HR tech stacks are receiving upgrades to better enable and manage the process in an end-to-end way, from initial contact with a potential candidate right through to a contract offer stage and then onwards to the onboarding and induction state. You can expect to see more developments in this HR tech space in the coming years as remote working is clearly here to stay.

AI as part of recruitment

Artificial intelligence has been around for a couple of years now and is being utilized across a number of business-critical services at multinational companies. There are still some things to iron out, so while the adoption has not yet been widespread-it is definitely trending and will continue to grow in popularity as business leaders become more and more convinced of its value proposition.

When it comes to recruitment and talent management, AI has an interesting and potentially game changing role to play. This is all about utilizing the latest artificial intelligence technology to help HR professionals and recruiters find and short-list potential candidates by rapidly analyzing and then isolating significant pieces of data related to these candidates. An example would be using artificial intelligence or machine learning to analyze social media shares or publicly available information about a potential candidate-this might seem a bit invasive, but it is widely known that this happens on a human level during the hiring process, so why not speed up the process using robotics or artificial intelligence?

Digital wellness tools

This trend was somewhat easier to predict as there has been a lot of media attention in the last 12 months around employee burnout and heightened stress levels as a result of working remotely during a pandemic.

Remote working isn’t for everybody, but it was forced on the general public, and they had to adapt to it-some thrived, while others found working from home and juggling family responsibilities such as being a caregiver to be significantly challenging.

There has therefore been a greater focus on mental health and digital wellness tools that help global employees take some time out and focus on their mental well-being. It is definitely in the interests of global employers to take a closer look at what this kind of technology can offer to their workforce-stress leave and sickness pay have proven to be significant drains on resources. But it goes further than that, the pandemic has created an increasing need for employees to feel included and valued where they work-any steps that global employers make to ensure digital wellness tools are freely available for their workforce to use, engage with and benefit from will be seen by many employees as a welcome and positive step forward.

This also extends to more general HR tools and technology- any technology that enables HR professionals to adopt a human and compassionate approach to employees who may be struggling with workloads or non-work-related issues can help ensure that the employee receives the assistance they need before more serious problems set in.

There is a clear connection between employee wellness and productivity rates- stable and happy employees tend to be engaged and productive employees who develop positive attitudes towards their employers, thus furthering retention rates. Organizations that take the lead with the introduction of digital wellness tools and who prioritize the physical and mental well-being of their global workforce are likely to find that any investment they make in this HR tech space is rewarded in the long run, via a workforce that feels valued.

These 3 HR technology trends are just the tip of the iceberg really and you can expect to see a lot more activity in the digital HR technology space in the coming years. More and more digital solutions are being developed to support HR processes and the global workforce in general. There is a gap in the market for this kind of technology and the pandemic has created new opportunities for innovation.  Most indications right now are that global employers and HR leaders understand the value and appreciate that any investment could prove to be very worthwhile to their HR departments.


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