Article (October-2016)


Trends in Hiring

Dr. D. Prasanth Nair

Designation : -   Co-founder

Organization : -  Asynithis (Indus Partners), Mumbai


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We are living in interesting times where the impact is driven not by singular forces but by multiple forces acting in unison but all not in same direction. We are witnessing change in economic power in countries, mega shifts in the competitive landscape, and unpredictability in terms of impact of technology on product /service. 

We are also faced with the acute shortage of employable (0.01% of population being skilled and qualifying as employable) talent. Additionally, the entry of millennials in Workplace with their changing needs and aspirations have added to the complexity of organization character. One often wonders if the HR practices in general and talent acquisition practices in particular, have kept pace with the ever evolving needs.

In this article, we look at some of the emerging trends which will need to be factored while designing the talent acquisition practices.

Some of the trends are:
1.    Global Talent: Given that Indian organizations need to adopt a global mind-set in terms of culture, productsand services, quality and regulatory among others, they would need to hire talent who can enable the same. This does not necessarily mean hiring expats or Indians abroad, but the focus should be more on individual's orientation to a global world. At the same time, with macro-economic trends indicating India as the fastest growing economy along with the continuous slow-down of developed countries, there could be a talent pool available across the globe which organizations in India can/should explore. 

2.    Elimination of old jobs and emergence of New Jobs: As per predictions, Internet of Things (IoT) will drastically change the way organizations work and this will result in elimination of about 100K jobs and creation of about 20K jobs by 2021. Organizations will be figuring out which processes can be automated, eliminated or changed on a continuous basis and this will have an impact on the future of organization structure and manning. 

3.    Rise in Non Employees: Organizations like Uber have more 'non employees' than the employees on rolls. Is this the future manningmodel? Given the ever evolving needs, millennials need of 'freedom' and need to tap the knowledge, a possibility exists that 'non-employees' outnumber the employees. 'Non employees' could be in form on contract labour, consultants, part times, partners among others. 

4.    Predictability: Given the stakes, risks, costs and need to get it 'right', organizations would need to improve the predictability of effectiveness, output, and propensity to stay among others. 

5.    Increasing use of Social Media as a branding and hiring tool: Organizations are leveraging the social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter for branding which helps in attracting talent apart from using these to get connected to talent at a global level. The advantage of these tools is the 'Reach by cost' ratio with respect to other media. Additionally because of the transparency that these provide, there is a kind of check mechanism built in.

6.    Use of Analytics: Future of competition will be driven by how well organizations use and leverage data. In the space of hiring, use of data and analytics will be increasingly used to reduce the error rates of the 'rejection of good candidate' and 'selection of right talent'. It can also be used to help decision making and help focus the efforts by establishing relationships between different variables thereby establishing cause-effect or correlation.

7.    Automation of hiring process: We will see increasing automation in hiring process. As of now the resume shortlisting process is automated in lot of organizations. But the future will see many other elements of the process - planning, scheduling, interviewing, reference checking, issuing offer letter, archiving and intelligent identification-among others - getting automated, thereby improving effectiveness and reducing cost.  

8.    Diversity and non-traditional sources of talent: Future organizations would be high on diversity - on multiple variables. Considering this, organizations shouldbe ready to explore different and non-traditional talent pools and further design the organization for maximizing productivity. 

9.    Focus on 2020 skills: The Skills required in 2020 will be different than the skills in 2015 in terms of business skills, people management, cross cultural networking among others. Managing automation and technology is expected to become an important competency. If today organizations are finding it difficult to manage millennials, the workforce of future will have Generation Z. In future hiring context, organizations will need to understand and assess these skills. Are the hiring managers equipped? 

10.Hiring Function: Should organizations have a hiring function? If not, what are considerations for extended sourcing (not outsourcing) of the function? If organizations need a hiring function, where should it report into - business or HR? How big will be the function? What are the capabilities required to excel? Given the range of views on this, each with reasoning, organizations should initiate the discussion to arrive at a model suitable for them. 

Go beyond Hiring: 
Given the complexity of the trends, it is important organizations consider the impact of these trends beyond hiring processes. Even though there are many areas to be looked into, this article highlights two of them to help understand the integrated approach the hiring plan need to take. A critical success factor in future would be how organizations ensure acculturation of talent and the creation of right enablers within the organization to ensure the right hires start performing. Organizations would also need to put in place systemsto ensure data confidentiality and security, given thepenetration technology and automation that will be witnessed. 

In summary, given the mega trends, organizations should evolve their hiring strategy in line with the business plan, leveraging the opportunities presented by the political, economic, social and technological evolution while ensuring appropriate integration with other pillars in the organization and making sure that the connect with the heart of the organization is strengthened.