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6 Trends That Are Impacting Workforce Planning

Every industry has undergone major changes recently, mostly due to the pandemic, but also because of constant technological advancements. Unfortunately, many lines of business have suffered devastating blows and, as a consequence, many people have been made redundant and it will probably take a while before those businesses recover. It seems that workforce planning has become one of the most challenging aspects of running a business now and in this text we’re trying to analyse the trends that seem to have the greatest impact on this issue.

Changing demographics

Every workforce plan needs to encompass the changing demographics. This is such a complex issue with profound impact on every business. For example, since people retire at an older age than before, we’re now facing the prospects of having more different generations working together, all with different sets of skills, life experiences and expectations. One of the issues that has also emerged is that companies find it hard to replace retiring workers, since not many young employees have the same skills. Unless there is a solid in-house training, business will be likely to underperform.

It’s not about location

While location used to be something that was of great importance to every business, its significance has reduced a lot. Namely, many companies all over the world, Australia included, went into lockdown by mid-March 2020 and this remained to be the case for the duration of the year. Some large companies have even permanently closed their offices and have announced that their employees can work from home. This means that flexibility has become much more important and that physical presence in attractive locations is no longer a must. This has also changed the job market, as location is no longer considered a primary criterion. As a result, new trends, such as hiring a contingent workforce, have emerged. That’s why companies offering efficient contractor workforce solutions in Australia have become really prominent.

Different expectations

With young people entering the job markets all over the world, the employees’ expectations have changed significantly. They are looking for easy and on-demand solutions to help their talents grow. While financial packages remain as important as ever, another element is now extremely popular among employees – experience. They want to feel appreciated and valued and wish to have opportunities to grow professionally while working for a company. The fact that finding a job is now easier in many ways means that they are also much more likely to jump ship as soon as a better offer is available. Staff turnover is higher than ever and that is something employers need to live with. This issue is one of the greatest obstacles every HR manager is facing right now, since young people are extremely focused on career advancement and won’t settle for a job that doesn’t offer it.

New technology

As we’ve been witnessing for decades, IT and mobile developments have affected the way we work beyond everyone’s expectations. What’s more, the trend is extremely likely to continue in the decades ahead. This means that a new workforce is expected to be able to keep abreast with the pace of these changes and constantly learn how to utilize new technologies. Just imagine an old teacher who had spent their whole career in the classroom, but needed to learn to use some modern e-learning platforms over the past year and a half! New employees are now expected to have the skills to adapt much more quickly and efficiently to any possible changes that might emerge.

Focus on collaboration

Collaboration has always been one of the key ingredients of success. It boosts productivity, offers new and original perspectives and enhances employee relationships. Luckily, we can now collaborate much more easily with our colleagues than ever before thanks to modern technology. Particularly useful is the fact that communication can take place regardless of where collocutors are located. This has made workplaces more collaborative environments, with phone calls, e-mail messages slowly being replaced by real-time messaging and project managing systems.

Work-life balance

More and more people are looking for a work-life balance that would ensure their well-being, particularly in this stressful environment dominated by the pandemic. When it broke out, many businesses were forced to turn to a work-from-home model, which gave employees more flexibility and control over their schedule. On the other hand, the prolonged period of being isolated often caused a decline in productivity, which is quite logical. Only a happy employee can be a productive employee. The companies that understand this put employee well-being high on the list of their priorities. Some do it because employees understand the problem and the connection between employee well-being and productivity, while others are forced to pay attention to it because employees now expect their companies to support a work-life balance. Whatever the motive, the fact remains that a good work-life balance needs to be achieved for an employee to be satisfied, i.e. productive.

These are just some of the most important trends affecting workforce planning. What they all have in common is the pace at which these changes are occurring, which means that only those companies that are able to keep up with them can expect to thrive in the future.



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