The future of work is here. The coronavirus pandemic rapidly shifted the focus of several workplace challenges and with it, the number of pressing human capital issues that human resource (HR) practitioners face has mounted significantly.
While there are other areas of focus requiring the stewardship of human resource professionals, a handful of challenges have bubbled to the surface as organizations work to navigate the increasingly complex features of today’s workforce.
Elevated in their field of practice are challenges such as
From the list of high-profile issues, pandemic-related topics have taken centre-stage as HR practitioners bring best practices and guidelines forward for leaders to implement within their respective teams.
As the waves of the pandemic continue to shift in size and force, the level of uncertainty and lack of clarity continues to pose a series of questions for employers and employees alike.
Addressing those questions requires a keen focus on the pulse of employee sentiment which captures the preferences and concerns of workers who may be feeling confused and uncertain about the future of their work world.
One of the premiere concerns for employees involves uncertainty as to whether their employer is prepared and ready to reintroduce them back into the workplace in both a physical and psychologically-safe manner. This concern drives the need for HR practitioners to support leaders with the implementation of office re-entry strategies and communications specific to vaccine policies.
Suggested reading: Addressing the Need for Workplace Vaccine Policies
As per data recently released by Robert Half and KPMG, there is a tension between employees who wish for remote or hybrid work arrangements and the contrasting views of managers who feel it would be easier if their team members all were back in the workplace.
The idea of navigating the engagement and productivity of hybrid work teams is nothing short of daunting. Leaders are looking to their HR business partners for guidance, best practices, and ongoing support.
In addition to helping leaders clarify work arrangement expectations, core work hours, distraction-free times, protocols for collaboration, and delivering excellent customer-service, many HR practitioners are tasked with providing the framework and training for leaders on mental health and self-care management for their respective teams.
Suggested reading: 5 Tips of Integrating Self-Care into the Workday
According to CAMH, mental illness has become the leading cause of disability in Canada. As a result, the cost of disability leave is twice the cost of a leave related to a physical illness.
Suggested reading: Post-pandemic Considerations for Disability Management
In direct relation to this topic, there is a need to capture and interpret workplace attendance metrics and group benefits utilization. With so many pressing issues on their plate, the expertise of a trusted benefits advisor has become increasingly important.
Analyzing and creating future cost and usage projections is a key service that experienced group benefits advisors bring to the table. They are well-versed in telling the story of the employer’s data in a way that makes sense and offers key insights that align with trends HR practitioners need in order to keep their human capital strategy ahead of the curve.
Managing the current HR challenges is a significant undertaking. Accessing the support and expertise of trusted service partners is a valuable way to proactively address these pressing HR issues.
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