What You Need to Know to Jumpstart Your 2018 HR Strategies

2 min read

For many HR executives, these fall months means one thing: planning for the year ahead. It’s a time to set budgets, goals and expectations, in hopes of hitting the ground running come January. To make the most informed decisions, they must look both outside and inside their own organizations and ask questions like “What’s working for other companies, and what’s not working for my own?

From technology innovation to cutting-edge strategies that view the workforce in a whole new way, the HR industry is going through a radical change. While this is exciting, it can be difficult to cut through the noise to understand what’s best for your own organization. Many HR executives rely on third-party research to help them do so. Which processes are best-in-class companies changing?

For 2018, there’s a clear front runner: 79% of executives say redesigning their performance management strategy is a high priority. And with good reason.

  • 90% of companies that have done so see direct improvements in engagement
  • 96% say the processes are simpler
  • 83% say they see the quality of conversations between employees and managers going up

This is all according to the 2017 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report, and these numbers are supported by dozens of other studies and surveys. The reasons why to implement a more modern approach to performance management are clear. However, the issue of how to do it leaves many HR executives on the sidelines when it comes to committing to a new strategy.

Three reasons why implementing new HR strategies stall

Lack of data. To design a new performance management process, HR executives must have a clear picture of what’s working and what’s not. Unfortunately, it’s hard to determine when your current processes don’t provide any insight into employee engagement or performance. For organizations doing paper reviews or managing their processes for surveys, recognition and performance via separate tools, this is the case.

No universal approach. Because HR executives are in the business of people, a one-size-fits-all approach isn’t possible. Across thousands upon thousands of businesses, no two workforces are the same. While this is a big reason why talent is a company’s biggest competitive differentiator, it also means that no two workforces can be managed in exactly the same way.

Insufficient C-level support. Any major process change costs valuable time and money. For that, HR needs a high level of support from stakeholders across the organization, and the C-suite needs to understand the ROI of a new strategy. Without solid data showing why a change is necessary and no playbook for how exactly it should be implemented, that C-level support can be hard to come by.

Get data… and fast

Sure, every HR leader wants to implement a new company-wide approach that incorporates the latest and greatest strategies. But to secure buy-in and understand the best way to implement those strategies at your unique organization, you must fully understand the impact of doing so. Now is the time to test out those new processes on a limited scale to gather critical benchmark measurements immediately. By starting now, you’ll gain:

  • A more well-rounded perspective on opportunities for improvement, blind spots and strengths
  • A foundation for creating 2018 goals that will have more business impact
  • Metrics around performance and engagement that will springboard 2018 planning
  • First-hand experience around how a new solution will fit into your current tech stack
  • Qualitative understanding resources required to actualize a new performance management strategy

To achieve peak performance from employees, HR leaders must ensure there’s a process in place to foster development and engagement. Testing new strategies to understand their impact on your unique workforce will allow you to get the results you want in 2018.