June 30th, 2016

Share Now


Earlier this year Humankind (previously HR Shop) posted about two current major trends; workplace flexibility and remote working. In this post we continue exploring HR trends – the rise of analytics, the downfall of engagement surveys, changes in professional development and learning, and the switch to digital tools in performance management.

‘What gets measured gets done’ – analytics

We’ve noticed that HR is becoming more focused on analytics but without a purpose or context this information usually offers little of value. Metrics may not measure the most important factors. Success in recruitment may be measured by ‘time to hire’. But it’s really the ‘quality of hire’ that counts. Nobody cares if it takes 20 or 30 days to get a new employee through the door; as long as you have the right outcome for your organisation.

Information may be collected but not analysed. Extrapolating data, then feeding in environmental and economic factors can give insights into what sort of workforce and skills may be required in the future. But don’t get too caught up in the numbers – HR is about people, making your business better, and often just doing the right thing; all difficult things to quantify. Remember H is for human!

Un-engaging from engagement surveys

The tide has turned on engagement surveys, many have decided they don’t work, and this year a report by Deloitte declared them obsolete. Traditional staff engagement surveys are too narrow, often nothing is done with the results, and some feature loaded questions skewed to one outcome – we’ve seen genuinely happy workplaces with dismal engagement scores due to questions skewed towards low scores. Join us in putting the humanity back into HR. If you want to know what your staff think why not strike up a conversation with them.

New school Vs. Old school – professional development

With the explosion of online learning tools in the previous three years, it’s no wonder that employees are becoming more self-directed in their learning and development. The mindset of who’s responsible for professional development has also changed; shifting from the expectation that employers will ‘develop employees’; towards supporting employees to initiate this learning and development themselves.

Learning and development should be incorporated into the workspace and employees supported with integrating it into their day-to-day routines.

Performance management goes digital

The floodgates have opened and torrents of organisations are ditching traditional performance management in favour of digital tools. 89 percent of those surveyed in the Global Human Capital Trends 2015 survey recently changed their performance management process or plan to change it within 18 months.

Performance management online tools – they’re new, exciting, and it seems like everyone else is using them.

But before buying any tools it pays to work out exactly what your organisation needs. Design the process you will use, this should be used as your criteria when choosing a tool. If nothing fits your process you may have to build something yourself – or perhaps you don’t need a tool? Maybe traditional performance management still works for your business.


  • Make sure data you’re collecting has a purpose and is analysed.
  • If you want to know what your staff think talk to them rather than sending them a survey.
  • Integrate professional development into the workspace and support employees to make it part of their routine.
  • Design your process before buying performance management tools.

How does your workplace incorporate professional development into the workplace? How have these trends affected your workplace? Let me know in the comments below.

Recent blog posts

Leave a Reply