Adrian Niga, senior account manager, human capital management solution at Oracle Romania, tells Business Review about the ways in which new generations of employees reshape both the local labour market and the companies’ HR strategies.
By Anda Sebesi
New generations have higher than ever expectations from jobs and employers. How can HR teams meet these requirements and successfully build the workforce of the future?
This digitally-native generation not only expects, but demands instant gratification and personalisation in every facet of their lives – the workplace included. They don’t simply work for a paycheck, but rather for the culture, the opportunity to make an impact, and recognition. If those goals aren’t being met, most young employees show no hesitation to jump ship. In my opinion, most HR teams have realised this and have changed or are in the process of changing their approach towards an employee-centric experience. HR departments put a lot of focus on company culture, impactful roles for employees and recognition in order to have a meaningful approach towards young employees and become more attractive to candidates. Also, with the help of technology, companies can better understand employees and propose roles that are a better fit for their skills, nurture talent and increase the level of engagement in order for the employee to feel that they are truly part of an organisation rather than just a cog in a machine.
Generation Z is used to getting personalised services everywhere. Is it possible to provide those within the workplace?
According to experts, personalised employee experiences pay off in keeping and nurturing talents and also improve employer branding. It’s important to remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy to employee experience. But with the help of new technology, a one-size-fits-one approach is both easier said and done. The analytics capabilities in leading human capital management solutions allow HR teams to customise employee experiences by delivering personalised content, predicting what new roles individuals may excel in, recommending tailored learning opportunities and even forecasting at-risk talent to signal more 1:1 time or coaching that might be needed with their managers.
Are emerging technologies such as AI or machine learning a reality in the workplace? What kinds of roles can they play?
There are innovative solutions that offer personalised employee experiences with the help of machine learning or AI. The Romanian market is still in the early stages in adopting them and constantly linking the experience with the employee’s preferences. Still, Romanian companies have seen the value that these types of solutions bring for HR departments. These tools are proving useful not only to automate repetitive processes but also to help employees have an easier experience with making simple requests.
Have employee communication channels changed? What’s the best way to get your employees’ attention?
Most companies now use different methods of communication with their employees in order to get rapid responses and more easily share content. E-mails are not being used as often for communications and most people use mobile responsive applications that can be used for both messaging and content sharing. Also, among the biggest trends, in Romania as well, are digital assistants that simplify a lot of requests coming from employees. Always responding in time and offering solutions to any request or doing deep dives in order to better understand the request, chatbots are the best colleague in many companies, helping both employees and HR departments.
How does the emergence of new technologies influence the position of HR professionals?
Employees are most productive when work is intuitive, flexible and fun, and emerging technology in HR can help companies meet rising expectations and win the talent war in an increasingly competitive landscape. While technologies like AI and machine learning may sound intimidating, the truth is that they’re expected by your future Gen Z workforce. And while AI can’t (and shouldn’t) replace the need for skilled HR professionals, it can help create an environment where employees of all generations feel acknowledged, valued and satisfied. HR professionals have the unique possibility of becoming a trusted advisor to their colleagues. By having a closer relationship with employees, HR professionals can increase retention rates and improve employer branding.