Is There a Revolution Taking Place in HR & Talent Management?

This article was first published by Cornerstone OnDemand on August 4, 2016. 

2016 was predicted to be the year of change in HR & Talent Management. According to Josh Bersin, 10 elements (associated with trends) would be disrupting the HR landscape, bringing a true revolution in the industry. As we are now halfway through 2016, I ask myself is this long-talked about HR & Talent Management revolution delivering?

Among the 10 main elements and trends for 2016, there are 3 that I personally connect with the most. Not only because they are closely linked one to another, but mainly as they appear as reoccurring themes in my daily conversations with HR and Talent professionals. I would like to reflect on the below 3 trends and elaborate on their true significance for HR.

Talent Management will reinvent itself

The industry of learning has been in a constant state of development, incorporating new tools and adjusting to what technology allows it to do. The continuous adaptation makes me think that we might not be speaking about a reinvention of Talent Management in the true meaning of the word.

The discussion here is rather about a new workforce, largely dominated by a much more demanding “generation” of employees – without any true allegiance to the corporation, but strong demand for development.

L&D providers now offer a complex array of changes to demonstrate how Talent Management is reinventing itself, growing rapidly through disruptive approaches which did not exist less than 5 years ago.

The biggest and most obvious change is probably in Performance Management as over 60% of organisations are completely re-vamping their approach. “Adieu!” to the top-down approach and “Welcome!” to the employee-centric approach.

Engagement, Culture and Feedback will become CEO level topics

Very tightly linked to the Talent Management reinvention is the introduction of tools which help organisations develop and measure their corporate culture.

But why would this be a CEO’s concern you might ask?

With the “War” on talent present more than ever and the majority of your millennial employees not spending more than 3 years in the same job, a sense of purpose has now gained more value than financial rewards.

This means that there is now greater value in knowing your organisation offers the right culture and programs for your employees. The right tools give your organisation a true competitive edge, making it vital for the CEO to be actively involved.

This does not push aside issues of global leadership development, on the contrary: it merely adds to the complexity and need for the CEO to keep the pulse on their organisation’s directions.

Corporate learning will go through a revolution

The revolution of corporate learning teaches us that no one-size fits all. Most corporations now understand the need for blended learning to cater to a diverse, mobile and demanding workforce.

What is interesting is that there seems to be a paradox: the more tools we put at the disposal of the learner – meaning giving them more options and choice, the harder we are making it for them to integrate learning in their already busy work schedule.

Modernising the workplace means reducing the divide between our social life tools vs what organisations typically offer. The corporate learning revolution should be about using these tools for a better and easier curation of learning content and yet the consumerisation of the workplace contributes heavily to creating overwhelmed employees.

In other words, content is king! Yes, true, but only when it is available and accessible at the point of need and in the format that best suits the learner.

When I take a closer look at these 3 predictions, my main takeaway is: Talent Management is more than ever driven by the Employee. HR Managers and L&D Professionals often feel overwhelmed by the continuous workforce & learners´ demands coming and learners, but once we understand that all revolutions are achieved by the people, for the people, we can successfully be part of the change.

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