Latest HR & business trends converge to put employee empowerment in social good as a top solution

Author: Callum Demicoli

Workplaces are evolving, and the expectations of businesses by employees and other stakeholders is rapidly changing. Here are just some trends we observe:

Businesses are increasingly supporting purpose, driven by a growing number of socially conscious employees who want a choice in where they can provide support.

Employees are demanding more from their workplace experience, from autonomy to purpose, flexible working to wellbeing.

Employee engagement is at an all-time low. In the UK, 57% of employees are not engaged and 26% are actively disengaged leading to low levels of productivity.

The future of skills development is subtle & difficult to train in-house. The top three skills for 2010 alone are complex problem solving, creativity and critical thinking.

Increasingly, organisations are facing difficulties in collecting data on their organisations social contributions. For example, changes to the UK Corporate Governance Code, issued by the FRC, now requires businesses to report on purpose, culture and employee engagement.

With more socially conscious stakeholders, businesses are accountable to impact practices like the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Articles and reports on the new world of employee volunteering and their benefits for employees, businesses and causes have been common in the first half of 2019.

Civil Society: Fourth Industrial Revolution ‘could almost double volunteering resource’

“Technology will transform our future working lives and working habits. The rise of AI will put an even greater premium on interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence — EQ rather than IQ. In this environment, people will be drawn to an even greater extent than in the past to purposeful activities which use and develop these skills.”

Deloitte Human Capital Trends: Reinvent with a human focus

From employee experience to human experience: Putting meaning back into work. One of the biggest challenges we identified this year is the need to improve what is often called the “employee experience”: Eighty-four percent of our survey respondents rated this issue important, and 28 percent rated it urgent. But the concept of employee experience falls short in that it fails to capture the need for meaning in work that people are looking for. We see an opportunity for employers to refresh and expand the concept of “employee experience” to address the “human experience” at work — building on an understanding of worker aspirations to connect work back to the impact it has on not only the organization, but society as a whole.

World Economic Forum: The 10 skills you need to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Creativity will become one of the top three skills workers will need. With the avalanche of new products, new technologies and new ways of working, workers are going to have to become more creative in order to benefit from these changes.

Whereas negotiation and flexibility are high on the list of skills for 2015, in 2020 they will begin to drop from the top 10 as machines, using masses of data, begin to make our decisions for us.

Emotional intelligence, which doesn’t feature in the top 10 today, will become one of the top skills needed by all. Working with causes provide a fertile space for this kind of soft skill development.

NCVO: Time Well Spent — A national survey on the employee experience:

“Enjoyment ranks highest among a range of benefits that volunteers feel they get out of volunteering. 90% of volunteers feel they make a difference through their volunteering — most commonly to an individual’s life.”