Human Resource Trends for 2007
Based on SHRM’s Workplace Forecast 2006-2007 Executive Summary
In reviewing SHRM’s Executive Summary, I reflect on certain trends in Human Resource Management that seem to strongly effect not just the world of business but our society. Let me quote from this summary to report the Top Ten Trends in Human Resource Management for 2007:
1. “Rising health care costs.
2. Increased use of outsourcing (offshoring) of jobs to other countries.
3. Threat of increased health care/medical costs on the economic competitiveness of the United States.
4. Increased demand for work/life balance.
5. Retirement of large numbers of “Baby Boomers” (those born between 1945 and 1964) around the same time.
6. New attitudes toward aging and retirement as baby boomers reach retirement age.
7. Rise in the number of individuals and families without health insurance.
8. Increased identity theft.
9. Work intensification as employers try to increase productivity with fewer employees.
10. Vulnerability of technology to attack or disaster. ”
This Executive Summary was produced by SHRM for its 140,000+ members and who gathered this information from many HR sources and surveys. (SHRM is the Society for Human Resource Management. )
The report goes on to detail other main issues that have become common to HR professionals such as: employee retirement benefits, labor shortages, retention of key personnel, economic uncertainties, labor negotiation, cross cultural understanding, legal responsibilities and employee rights, global business practices, and many other family, work, and societal trends.
This is stressful for HR professionals, other managers, and for your personnel. The way I read this report (from my position as a stress management trainer, consultant, and coach) is that the increased pace of change and the aging of the workforce has driven pressing considerations for managing stress in the workplace. Un-managed stress contributes to negative challenges in health care costs (issues #1, #3, #7), work life balance (#4), retention (#5, #9, #4, #6), and reduced levels of productivity (#9, #4. ) Insecurities and threats from global pressures are not issues which stress top management, these are concerns of many HR professionals and many people in our work force.
While it may beyond our ability to control major global trends or even changes within our society, we can develop strategies to control the way we, and our workforce, responds to these pressures. We can manage change by leading change in the most positive ways. We can avoid using “denial” as a tool to put off the needed trainings that are essential for economic health and increased productivity in business. So let’s take our “heads out the sand” and move forward by addressing these issues and not just reacting to the aftermath of negative situations.
Be a leader and help develop the strategies that your organization requires to minimize the stress of these inevitable trends upon our personnel and productivity.
Consider learning more about: Change management… Leading Inevitable Change and Transitions in Positive Ways Stress Management for key individuals, teams, and your organization Building Effective Retention Strategies Work Life Balance and Quality of life programs (retention and health care cost control) Health care cost containment Wellness as an important benefit for health care cost containment and as a retention strategy Enhancing Productivity of your workforce by removing distractions
Whether your organization is large or small these trends will affect you. If your business is in: healthcare, finance, manufacturing, transportation, human services, education, technology, government, or retail, you will need to address how changes in our world and our society influence your workforce. Even though you may feel overwhelmed by these trends, you can save time and money while increasing productivity by helping to create strategies that will assist your managers and your personnel to respond in the most positive ways.
Along the way, please take good care of yourself.
L. John Mason, Ph. D. is the author of the best selling “Guide to Stress Reduction. " Since 1977, he has offered Executive Coaching and Training.
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