Employee experience and learning emerge as key HR trends

25 April 2019 Consulting.ca 3 min. read
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Deloitte’s ninth annual Human Capital Trends report examined future disruptions in human resources, comparing Canadian respondents’ viewpoints against the global average.  

Surveys and studies consistently revealed the same results: consumers, especially these from younger generations, want the companies they support to be purpose-driven, with a strong set of corporate social responsibility values at the core of their operations. They also want more than the lip service of glowing mission statements or token philanthropy.

According to Deloitte, the pressure is pushing companies to examine the possibility of becoming social enterprises – organizations that combines revenue growth and profit with the need to respect and support their environment and stakeholders.

A recent report from Deloitte examines disruptions to the workforce, organization, and HR within the emergent context of social enterprise. The 2019 Human Capital Trends report queried 10,000 respondents in 119 countries, including 250 Canadian business and HR leaders.

Employee experience and learning emerge as key HR trends

Future of the workforce

Leadership development continues to be a challenging area for Canadian organizations. Only 48% of Canadian respondents said their leaders were effective at leading or managing teams, versus a global average of 61%. Canadian respondents also cited ineffective operating models and inadequate performance management as barriers to developing the next wave of leaders.

"Canadian executives need to look deeper and broader within the four walls of their organization and leverage learning, talent mobility and rewards to identify, stretch, and grow the next generation of leaders," Jodi Baker Calamai, a human capital partner at Deloitte Canada, said.

Future of the organization

Deloitte projects organizations to keep trending in a more experience-focused and team-oriented direction. Twenty-one percent more Canadian respondents said collaboration and communication are key factors in defining employee experience than the global average, while 17% more said that a positive work environment and trusting in leadership are key factors in defining employee experience.

"In line with the social enterprise and the importance of meaning at work, Canadian organizations need to expand this concept of 'employee experience' to address the 'human experience' at work – aligning with workers' aspirations to connect work to both the impact on the organization and society at large," Baker Calamai added.

Future of HR

Learning emerged as the most important HR trend in this year’s report. In Canada, the number-one reason respondents said they looked for new talent externally was because of employees’ inability to learn quickly enough. Globally, the most cited reason was to access new capabilities proliferating outside the organization.

Canadians also found their companies’ learning organizations to be somewhat lacking: 66% said their learning function’s ability to meet evolving workforce needs was fair or inadequate, compared to 50% of global respondents. Fifty-nine percent of Canadians, meanwhile, said their organizations have limited or no usage of experiential learning.

"When you combine the exponential pace of change with the 100-year life and the 50- to 60-year career, our research highlights a clear gap in how prepared Canadian organizations are to equip their employees with the constant learning opportunities needed to adapt," Baker Calamai said. "We need to rethink the concept of learning and create experiences that cultivate growth multiple times throughout the day."