As 2017 draws to a close, we're taking a moment to look back on the important developments in workforce management. At the start of the year, we identified several trends we expected would define workforce management for the industry and the businesses who rely on the latest in workforce management solutions. Altogether, our expectations aligned pretty well with how the year played out. Here are three topics that aligned with our early year predictions.
1. The Employee Experience
User experience determines how well managers and employees alike can skillfully use and apply workforce solutions, and a great deal of attention is being placed on the employees especially. As mobility continues to improve and businesses permit a greater array of personal devices, solutions are aiming to provide employees with seamless advantages that help them be their productive best. Scheduling, timekeeping and more can now be done in ways that employees prefer. The new Kronos Workforce Dimensions platform puts the priority on user experience across an even wider landscape of devices, while still giving managers oversight on how, when and where access to each solution makes the most sense for their business.
2. Heads in The Cloud
You really can have your cake and eat it too - or more specifically have your workforce solutions and not have to host and maintain them locally. Businesses are continuing to migrate to The Cloud - many of our clients included - and as solutions continue to meet new needs across business sizes and sectors, more will join in. It's a model that lifts a huge burden on local IT departments and improves accessibility to the latest updates and prompt maintenance by solutions providers. The Cloud is still on the rise.3. Generational Shifts are Ongoing
Albeit a foreseeable trend (i.e., inevitable), generational shifts certainly influenced the discussion around employee engagement in the workplace this year. Work ethic is not suffering, but the incoming workforce and Millennials entering into leadership roles do expect more than just stability and a paycheck from their employers. From hiring for fit to strengthening employee retention, businesses still have a lot of work to do by way of improving engagement levels and unlocking even greater productive potential.
Other topics we had our eye on include the Internet of Things (processing workplace data from every possible point of connectivity), the Boomerang workforce (employees who left and want to return), and the growth of virtual reality (VR) applications in HR and the hiring process. We anticipate these to continue to be important topics as we move into 2018.
Now we'd like to hear about your experience. What had the greatest impact on your workforce management practices in 2017, and what new solutions could you use most in the coming year?