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Tackling HR Challenges: Empowering People Teams for Success

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What will be the biggest HR challenges in 2023?

HR Challenge 1: Quit quietly

The big challenge we often hear about is “quiet termination.” This is the case when employees only do the bare minimum for their work. They are unhappy with their company and their role, but the job market has changed and there may not be as many opportunities. We need to address this issue by listening to employees' frustrations and considering what can be done, e.g. through a balanced distribution of workload and the implementation of a healthier work-life balance.

HR Challenge 2: Organizational Effectiveness

The productivity of companies and teams as well as the performance of individuals will take on greater importance this year. To achieve this goal, we need to look at the broader changes we can make within the organization to minimize inefficiencies and barriers to productivity. We also need to prioritize more to ensure teams are set up for success.

HR Challenge 3: Hiring high-quality talent

The third challenge I see is how to keep the bar high when there will be a lot more talent in the market. How do you make sure you're not flooding your company with talent you don't need and that you're keeping the bar high?

HR Challenge 4: People Development

HR teams need to ensure that they support their employees more this year, as there likely won't be as many opportunities for promotion or career development as in previous years. How can you make personal growth more tangible without a title change?

HR Challenge 5: Automation and Data

The basis for all of these considerations is the ability to make HR work smarter through tools and automation. Do you even have access to the data you need to truly “know” your business and make confident decisions?

How can we address some of these HR challenges?

1. Laser focus on your goals and priorities

HR has always been crucial - we've seen this especially with the pandemic. One of the most important topics in 2023 will be how best to support employees during this time while avoiding burnout.

Prioritize ruthlessly. More priorities do not equal better priorities, and you run the risk of failing at all of them. Set priorities to rally around, communicate clearly, and tune out the noise.

Also, make sure your company goals translate into department and team goals so employees know what is expected of them. Make sure your priorities and goals aren't too broad, and focus on what's important so that employees don't feel like they have to overwork themselves if they're worried about losing their job.

2. Drive company-wide productivity

Given the financial outlook, we definitely expect a greater focus on productivity within an organization, not just company and team productivity, but also individual performance and engagement. HR is in a great position to help with this. We need to examine how happy and healthy our teams are in the face of recent uncertainties and organizational inefficiencies.

We also need to look at where we can make changes in the organization to work faster, smarter and reduce overhead. To this end, consider establishing company-wide meeting-free days, a centralized HR ticketing system, and an accessible employee resource center for frequently asked questions so that your teams aren't busy answering employee questions all day.

3. Focus on the metrics that matter

Take a look at elements like headcount and labor costs, organizational structure, revenue per FTE, incentive structure, and unfortunate turnover. Review this data to understand the health of the organization and where there are opportunities to become more efficient. Be sure to work with the finance department to review revenues and costs and determine where they see opportunities. Discuss these findings with finance and your CEO.

Use the time you have now to really think about how effectively and efficiently you are running your HR team by looking at metrics like cost per hire, percentage of HR employees compared to company headcount, time to respond of employee inquiries and assess the ratio of HR partners/managers to leads. Make sure you have access to the insights you need to understand the trends within your HR function.

4. Lead with authenticity and openness

In times of uncertainty, employee engagement can decrease. One way to increase it is to be transparent. Talk to your managers about how your teams are doing. Use data and facts to create a deeper understanding of company performance and prospects so every employee is informed. Have regular and open communication with your employees. Letting them know that certain elements are unknown can be helpful for both a leader's openness and overall well-being.

Ask for feedback - it's really important that you know how you're doing and that you receive feedback as a leader. We must be able to lead in uncertain times and be comfortable with not having all the answers. We need to feel comfortable being vulnerable and providing comfort to our teams so we can support and guide them. Make sure your leaders know they can take the lead within the larger leadership team when issues arise.

5. Lean on your HR community

I've found that my network has really strengthened and grown through COVID, and I've met a lot of people that I might not have met through virtual networking (and now in-person networking) in the past. This really helped me think about where there are opportunities and where I can learn what other companies are doing.

Connect with others who have been through similar economic downturns and learn how to best navigate your business through the crisis. Now that we live in a world where we can be together, you should build a network to connect with. A lot of resilience is definitely needed. You'll need to figure out how to restructure teams when you have to make tough decisions.

And finally... Don't forget the positive side of HR challenges

Don’t overload your teams with a variety of new initiatives. HR should be very adaptable in their plans for the next year because there are things that we simply don't know whether they will happen or not and how to respond to them. Refocus on what your company needs from you: organizational effectiveness and productivity, performance improvement and internal growth of your talent when there aren't many career paths.

In the face of evolving HR challenges in 2023, IceHrm emerges as a strategic partner, providing solutions to empower HR teams. With a focus on organizational effectiveness, productivity, and data-driven decision-making, IceHrm helps navigate uncertainties, fostering a resilient and engaged workforce.

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