your organization's HR team may have to plan extreme human capital management
(HCM) initiatives that can leave you perplexed about where it's all heading. Well!
These initiatives are a result of the sky high expectations from chief human
resources officer (CHRO) and HR teams
in an organization.
Indian IT services firm created around 22 bots to perform HR functions using artificial
intelligence (AI). These bots are being integrated with the existing HR
software platform that the company sells, thus bringing a high-end 'robotic
experience' i.e. without the intervention of humans, to the otherwise mundane
On the other
side, large tech companies are now providing on-campus, toddler daycare
services, in an effort to improve their employee-friendliness and bring a 'human
touch' to employee relations.
These two anecdotes
best summarize the extreme HCM initiatives ('face-less' to 'humane') that typical
HR functions have been undergoing in recent times.
offbeat nature, it is interesting to analyze the various factors influencing the
planning and execution of such human capital management (HCM) initiatives. To be
more methodical about this analysis, we will categorize these factors as 'behavioral,'
'ecological,' and 'positional.'
As the name
suggests, behavioral factors revolve around the 'perceived behavior' of your HR
teams, and the associated HCM initiatives which determine how employees
perceive the HR teams in an organization.
initiatives introduced by various enterprises across the globe point to the
Big shift in the mind-set towards employee engagement / satisfaction
above, the introduction of toddler daycare, on-campus, is an excellent example of
this shift. Alongside, Tech companies like Microsoft, Infosys, etc. have already
announced that they are 'removing the traditional bell curve for employee
performance' appraisals. In fact, several companies today also take pride in
announcing themselves to be 'flat' or 'no-hierarchy' organizations.
Introduction of more work-from-home opportunities and informal dress codes are
some other moves made by them, considering 'employee satisfaction' as a key parameter
in designing HCM initiatives or policies.
Need for increased communication
have realized the undeniable need of employee communication. Therefore, each enterprise
is creating layered HR teams to address employee concerns. This could encompass
initiatives like location-specific HR teams, business group-specific HR teams,
creating 'grievance cells' to handle employee issues, and introducing 'employee
buddy' programs to handle the onboarding of new employees.
One of the
largest shifts visible today is in an organization's efforts to introduce gender
diversity in their enterprise. Similarly, global organizations carry a huge onus
of ensuring improved cross-cultural diversity in their teams. Enterprises with
high diversity are good examples to emulate, as they are seen to have more 'open'
and 'fair' HR policies; which is, again, a positive behavior from the HR team
that employees would look forward to.
business complexity is increasing with every passing day, enterprises are hard
at work, trying to simplify their processes as much as possible. HR is one good
function within an enterprise, wherein process simplification or
standardization, elimination of multiple approvals, and going paperless for
almost all processes is fast becoming a standard practice.
are driven more by the outside environment or the 'ecosystem'. Although some
considerations here are optional, most are crucial and mandatory, and to a
large extent, define the HCM initiatives taken by various enterprises.
various tech-practices trending across the HCM ecosystem; such as, the rapid
adoption of HCM cloud, increased use of HR analytics, and preparing for HR
operations using machine learning.
to Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) laws, diversity rules, paid leaves of
absence (LOA) standards, labor policies, minimum wages, etc. are governed by
regulations or the law of the land. There is an increasing trend among global
organizations to conduct HCM initiatives aimed at streamlining such regulatory
compliance across various geographies of operations.
face enhanced scrutiny of their data management, data access, and PII data
protection practices. This is forcing HCM teams to design and implement several
governing, policing, and grievance redressal mechanisms around various data privacy
or intellectual property laws.
initiatives are designed to provide a positional advantage to an enterprise.
They act as external or internal branding for the enterprise and are closely
monitored by the organization's high-level executives.
are mandating their HR teams to demonstrate the business value of HR to the
organization. In other words, most HCM initiatives today are driven by business
value / key performance indicators (KPI) and focus on aligning HR to the organization's
want their HR teams to bring in new, market-leading, and employee-focused
practices that culminate in achieving the coveted 'Best Employer' award. Recently,
a private bank in India created an employee journey based 'Employee Experience'
HR initiative, which was kind of a radical approach to handling HR transactions.
want their HR teams to propel a culture of innovation across the organization
and be true partners in their modernization journey. This is driving HR teams
to create newer policies / frameworks to nurture and propagate innovation
within the teams. Recent HCM initiatives include redefining jobs / positions /
AORs (Areas of Responsibility) to allow employees to manage their career
working on multiple items beyond the regular work. It is just like allowing
them to manage their careers as a portfolio. HCM initiatives are being designed
specially to identify and incentivize an employees' contributions of novel or
innovative ideas, above and beyond their regular, expected tasks / activities.
Today, most enterprises
use their HR teams as representatives to communicate the company's value system.
HCM initiatives primarily designed in the form of workshops, emails, sessions,
campaigns, etc., using various gamification techniques, are meant to improve
the awareness of the organizational value system within the employee
This is an
age-old expectation from HR teams but receives very high visibility in today's age
of 'talent wars' - in which an enterprise has to participate. HCM initiatives
are now designed to empower the organization's workforce in skill-areas that
are crucial to giving an organization the much-required 'competitive edge'.
To summarize, the changing needs of
organizations to engage better with the millennial
employees and digital workforce -- employees who use smart-devices and are active
on social networks --are mandating them to change their HR processes and
applications in line with the future's needs.
This has made chief human resources
officers (CHROs) and HR teams of organizations take proactive actions in
addressing the expectations from various corners. The factors discussed above -
behavioral, ecological and positional - influence most of the HR initiatives
being planned and executed by these teams.
it HR-bots or toddler daycare centers --it is all for a good cause!