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Author's profile photo Kathryn Kamin

3 HR Meta-Trends Sparking a More Inclusive Experience

Each year, SAP reports on the top meta-trends in human resources, and how they’ve evolved, to help HR professionals stay informed about the most pressing trends in their field. The most recent report found that HR departments continue to play a crucial role in the creation of the “next normal,” and that hybrid work and learning opportunities remain the top two trends. Over the past year, SAP has helped several organizations migrate to or expand their use of the SAP SuccessFactors Human Experience Management Suite (HXM Suite) for this very reason.

Building belonging, nurturing employees, and enriching teams

Three trends had significant shifts over the past year: diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI); the employee experience; and well-being. Employee experience increased in prevalence, as workers seek changes that are better aligned with their desires. In 2022, DEI and well-being ranked lower in prevalence because how these topics are being discussed and approached has shifted. To help you understand and prepare for the changes happening in these three critical areas, we explain how each is transforming and offer advice on how to manage the changes.

“We have so much at our disposal. Let’s use those resources to really make a better world in the future.” — Faiyaz Rushd, Senior Manager, Advisory Services, EY

DEI: From purpose-driven to DEI-minded

Organizations are moving away from DEI as a purpose-driven initiative. Now they are embracing it as their own stand-alone topic and making it a part of company mindsets and permanent processes.

Flexibility remains a top factor for underrepresented talent when deciding between opportunities. Discussions about fair pay and equity are back in the spotlight, but now also include talk about balancing competitive pay between new recruits and existing employee salaries as well as managing compensation for remote or hybrid workers who change locations.

Our advice:

  1. Candidate-attraction strategies are only as effective as they are authentic. Be sure HR, DEI, and communication leaders collaborate on consistent and realistic messaging.
  2. Hold yourself accountable to employees and job seekers by publicly reporting your DEI goals and any associated progress.
  3. Help your leadership avoid proximity bias when making retention and promotion decisions by aligning hybrid and remote roles with your organization’s DEI goals.

Employee experience: From individualization to expectation

A major change is occurring in how organizations approach the topic of the employee experience. Previously the focus was on individualized employee experiences, but now that idea is viewed as impractical and even potentially unethical if not developed or overseen correctly. Instead, talk is now about developing policies that create a common but flexible experience and that ensure employee personalization has intent.

Also trending is the idea of a “total experience” approach. Previously, organizations were trying to improve customer and employee experiences with separate approaches. Now they are combining them into a total experience that can increase loyalty, retention, and satisfaction both internally and externally.

Our advice:

  1. Make sure you are listening continuously via frequent employee surveys – and then be sure to follow up with communication that shows you acted on their feedback.
  2. Give personalized experiences a purpose by linking learning with employee career goals or interests with relevant internal opportunities.
  3. Be careful not to confuse rewards and novelties with the basics of an enriching job experience, such as growth, development, respect, and opportunity.

Well-being: From reactivity to necessity

Conversations around employee well-being have now shifted from pandemic-era concerns such as vaccines and safety guidelines. Instead, organizations are taking a longer-term, comprehensive approach that goes beyond mental and physical health and reaches into other areas employees want support, including financial, spiritual, familial, and social well-being.

Supporting the well-being of remote and hybrid workers also remains a challenge, with boundaries between work and home continuing to blur. Trend data also shows that managers are taking a bigger role in promoting well-being and work-life balance.

Our advice:

  1. You can reduce employee burnout and can help attract and retain talent by providing meaningful well-being resources.
  2. Bring a sustainability mindset to all your people practices. New policies and practices that emphasize employee well-being are vital to building a sustainable workforce.
  3. Due to privacy and autonomy concerns, you should always proceed with caution before using technology such as artificial intelligence to monitor employee well-being.

SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite

SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite provides cloud-based human resource management systems that connect core HR and payroll, talent management, and people analytics to help you deliver exceptional employee experiences and successfully manage a changing workforce.

3 HR Meta-Trends Sparking a More Inclusive Experience

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