Top 5 challenges for HR professionals in 2021

The work of HR professionals is an essential component in the overall corporate machinery at every modern company of today. They ensure human capital in adequate numbers and of the requisite skill levels is available with the company and is working away toward organizational success. They also check that the compensation structure is realistic and competitive.

How can HR help a company?

In the course of an HR career, a professional brings many advantages for a company. Some of these are explained below:

  • Lowering expenses by analyzing costs and benefits of recruitment and turnover
  • Ensuring legal compliance of all employment practices
  • Helping in new employee orientation
  • Building strong employee relationships for better performance and satisfaction
  • Facilitating a smooth process of recruitment and onboarding from start to finish

What challenges does HR face in the present day?

The pandemic is the latest challenge for professionals in the history of HR careers. There is a health crisis, mental health is a concern, economies are experiencing downturns, and social unrest continues in more than one nation. Of course, the mass switch to remote work has been a huge task in itself, and there may be a phased return to office work or a hybrid work model may come in. These changes are likely to continue through 2021, and the HR team must consider how it will tackle these challenges.

Here are the top 5 challenges for HR professionals in 2021:

  • Moving to the new normal: The post-pandemic world is unknown territory for most. Each company will have to take its own decision on how to manage its operations in this time. Given the struggle about determining the right new normal for a company, HR will need to take on the mantle of a consultant to determine what is feasible for the company and what employees wish to do.
  • Hiring and onboarding the right talent: Competition in the market and for talent continues unabated, and finding the right talent remains a challenge. Recruitment was paused at many companies at the height of the pandemic, and it is expected to pick up now but in a remote work environment. Traditional processes of interviewing, vetting, and examining candidates will change, as will the way they are brought up to speed on how work is done. Technology is likely to play a major role here.
  • Building competencies during remote work: It becomes important to connect employees who do not already have close work relationships. HR could encourage skill-sharing partnerships and mentoring to boost the capabilities of the workforce. Research indicates a third of skills from a job post of 2017 will not be relevant in 2021, and that when there are peer learning partnerships, employees quickly begin using 75 percent of the new skills they have learnt.
  • Giving support for mental health and wellness: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US says that mental illness is troubling more than 40 percent of US adults. Employee health plans must include support for mental health and wellness, given how stressful and difficult the times are. It is important to remember to be sensitive in the approach while also maintaining privacy of employee information.
  • Promoting diversity and inclusion: The past year has brought diversity and inclusion into sharp focus, especially with the ‘Me Too’ and ‘Black Lives Matter’ movements. Among employees, 61 percent believe there is a need for more inclusiveness, implying not just diverse hiring but facilitating growth and advancement opportunities for all.

How can an HR professional be prepared for the coming challenges?

Among several options available, a particularly good choice is to opt for the best HR and talent management certifications. A certification gives the skills and knowhow that prepare HR professionals to take on the toughest challenges in the HR domain and discharge their duties successfully and responsibly.