The 11 trends impacting HR Digital transformation

| Ameya Deshmukh
AI Digital Transformation
11 trends impacting HR digital transformation blog background image

“Even the long term is not that long term anymore. It’s happening way faster.” – Haim Israel. The world and with it the world of work are changing faster than ever before. The trends we’ll share in this article are things HR leaders and staffing leaders need to consider for the long term. Except, the long term isn’t long term anymore. According to Israel, these 11 trends are just 5-10 years away from affecting the way HR and staffing operate. Understanding them will help your HR digital transformation be more effective. How has technology changed the hiring process? These 11 trends reflect changes we’ve already seen in addition to what is to come:

  1. Important technology innovation
  2. More data and better usage of data
  3. Widespread AI adoption
  4. Increased privacy regulation
  5. Incoming people changes
  6. Managing generational transition
  7. Understanding Gen Z and Millennials
  8. Changes to industries through the silver economy
  9. Incoming earth changes
  10. Increased hiring in renewables
  11. Increased hiring in electric transportation

Why are things changing so quickly?

This increased rate of change is called “techceleration.” Due to Moore’s law we’ve entered a time of exponential growth and change. The speed of tech change and adoption have both increased exponentially.


The highest impact change areas of the decade

Haim Israel is a futurist who spends his time researching trends like e-sports or Tik Tok. He drew on the work of 700 analysts to predict the impact of technology on the job market and the world. He created a framework with 3 categories of technology impact for the coming decade: innovation, people, and planet.  

In the innovation category, Haim highlighted big data, artificial intelligence, robotics, cybersecurity, privacy, and genomics. Innovation maps to your HR digital transformation strategy and your staffing digital transformation strategy. 

In the people category, Haim highlighted aging, silver economy, Gen Z, Gen Y, Millenials, education, and inequality. People maps to your understanding of new generations, the timing on when they comprise the workforce, and how to best hire them. The technology you implement today will define how you engage with the new workforce. 

In the planet category, Haim highlighted climate change, food security, water, waste, renewable energy, and energy storage. Planet maps to new opportunities for staffing companies to focus on providing specialized talent. Building a process that deals with your existing data effectively will position you to better support new hiring needs for renewable energy. 


Important technology innovation

The coming decade will see big data, AI, and privacy regulations abound. HR orgs and staffing companies who engage in digital transformation will gain advantages while those who lag behind due to linear mental models on change will lose ground. 

More data and better usage of data: 

The amount of data we generate globally is growing exponentially every 2-3 years. Right now, in aggregate, we only use 1% of it. The other 99% is just created, it isn’t stored or analyzed. In HR and in staffing the amount of data you are generating is growing exponentially as well. AI can unlock your ability to store, analyze, and leverage your people data. 

Widespread AI adoption: 

Innovators and early adopters of AI for recruiting plan to scale its use by 200-400% in 2021. In 2 years time, 77% of HR and staffing organizations plan to use AI for talent acquisition. 56% of the organizations we surveyed in 2019 reported they already use recruiting AI. 



Increased privacy regulation 

As the world becomes more digital, consumers will want greater control over their data. Governments will step in and create additional legislation around data usage and privacy. Expect more changes like GDPR. Make sure you have a clean data environment so that you can respond with agility to regulatory changes. 

Incoming people changes: 

As a new workforce begins to dominate the recruiting environment, HR and staffing leaders should ask, “what do I know about these groups? How is my strategy changing to reach them better?” Millennials are predicted to comprise 75% of the US workforce by 2025. 

Managing generational transition 

Previous generations have an entirely different view and relationship with their employers/workplace. New generations including Millenials and Gen Z are incoming into the workforce. HR and staffing leaders will need to learn how to balance the needs of 2 very different generations to create employee engagement. Your digital strategy will lead the way. 

Understanding Gen Z and Millennials 

The new generations want different things out of work. They also have different attitudes toward employers. Understanding the psychographics of these workers is key to creating a culture, hiring experience, and employer brand that attracts/retains them. Hiring employees from the first generation to go through a massive technological change and the first digitally native generation will help keep employers agile in the coming years. 


Changes to industries through the silver economy 

In this decade we’ll have more people over the age of 65 than people under the age of 5. This group of people is known as the “silver economy.” In the United States, the silver economy accounts for 50% of spending dollars. The cruise lines industry, experience economies, home renovation, retirement communities, life insurance companies, and healthcare companies will all see increased hiring needs. It’s a great opportunity for healthcare-focused staffing companies. Being up to speed digitally will ensure you have the agility in place to scale recruiting operations on a dime. 

Incoming earth changes: 

Climate change is happening. Scientists predict we’ll reach the point of no return in 2030 if carbon emissions continue at current rates. Climate change will impact hundreds of millions of people worldwide and economies will focus on solutions to their problems. 

Increased hiring in renewables 

Renewable energy has become cheaper to produce in some places than fossil fuel. It’s also way easier to adopt it than before. Before it took cities decades to switch to renewables. In 2016, the city of Georgetown in Texas switched to 98% renewable energy usage in just 2 years. 

As this grows to benefit from economies of scale, expect renewables jobs to increase significantly. 

Increased hiring in electric transportation 

Analysts predict a large uptick in electric transportation by 2030. Transportation currently accounts for 50% of the world’s oil demand. By 2030, according to some estimates, 1/3rd of all cars sold will be electric vehicles. This will create a new economy around electric vehicles and new jobs as well. 


Agility through digital transformation is the key

In the 2020s, agility is needed for HR and staffing companies. The best way to obtain it is through digital transformation. Your recruiting organization will need to be able to operate using a clean database, and it’ll need to be able to quickly deploy in sites all over the world. Your processes will have to be streamlined and consumerized as possible to engage digital-native workers. 

The 2020s will also bring a ton of opportunity for staffing companies to support hiring in new economies around the silver economy, renewable energy, and electric transportation. Positioning your agency for success in these areas means building relationships with the candidates you have right now. Candidates you’re placing today for healthcare, light industrial and construction positions will be in high demand. 

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