Australian Bureau of Statistics research predicts Australia’s contingent workforce will reach 25% by 2020. And as we’ve noted, data also shows Australia is embracing part-time employment, with more than 80% of all new jobs created in the past 12 months being part-time. Human Resources is no exception to this trend.
Contract and part-time roles are becoming more commonplace, whether out of the need to get talent in the door quickly, or due to changed hiring policies.
HR professionals themselves at all levels are showing a keener interest than ever before in contracting vacancies, as they too are looking for flexibility and career-enhancing moves. These roles provide exposure to a variety of different industries and projects. Contracting also gives many professionals a window into different Human Resource models and cultures that they wouldn’t have had the chance to directly experience on a permanent basis. The contract market is evolving at a rapid pace and is becoming a highly desirable employment option for organisations and candidates seeking flexibility.
Technological innovations and social shifts are also fuelling the rapid change in HR. Deloitte’s recent report HR Technology Disruptions for 2018 says technology offers the biggest challenge and opportunity for HR and as such, HR professionals need to themselves be increasingly tech-savvy, agile and innovative.
Tech trends anticipated to affect the HR industry include a new focus on tools for workplace productivity. HR is experiencing a shift from talent management to team and work management. To increase team productivity, Human Resources need software that boosts productivity and helps teams work together more effectively.
ERP and human capital management will move to the cloud. Currently, only 40% of companies use cloud HCM solutions and for large businesses, cloud migration often takes two to three years. Cloud HCM vendors will need to develop features to keep up with continuous performance management. The annual performance reviews are on their way out as progressive Human Resources departments ensure performance and development is a more fluid and continuous process.
Other changes include the increase of feedback and analytics tools, and the wellbeing market. HR departments are recognising wellbeing initiatives as the key to optimum “human performance”. And finally, companies are viewing employee related data as increasingly important.
HR departments will increasingly experiment with new performance management models, learning strategies, and ways to reduce bias and recruitment techniques. Yet the importance of maintaining strong interpersonal communication won’t diminish. Demand for confident and skilled HR professionals is high and continues to grow. For 2018 there will be steady growth and exciting employment prospects.
The Australian Government Job Outlook website lists HR as a growing profession with above-average job openings.
The Outlook reports over the five years to November 2019, the number of job openings for HR professionals is expected to be above average (between 25,001 and 50,000). At the beginning of 2018 there were more than 10,000 Australian jobs available in Human Resources. The east coast remains the highest employer of HR managers and workers, which is good news for the Hunter, Central Coast and Sydney. The average advertised salary is $82,215 and organisational development ads rose 19% due to larger companies expanding and seeking to be competitive in the development of talent.
Work health and safety positions rose by 15% in response to employers needing Human Resources managers with strong risk management skills. Workplace wellness is also front of mind as mental health issues and domestic violence support become part of employee assistance programs.
But training and development jobs declined by 11%, although demand remains for skilled candidates.
Sought-after HR skills in the current job market include a future focus; an understanding of business cycles; the ability to build skills needed to achieve company strategy, and implement innovation to a changing workplace culture; and a knowledge of workplace legislation, especially in relation to bullying, harassment and mental health.
Research (Reventure’s report, Workplace Wellbeing) suggests 25 per cent of Australian workers would sacrifice company perks for better wellbeing in their workplace and 74 per cent of workers also believe that workplace well-being programs, which cover everything from flexible hours to fitness programs, are worth the time and money. More employees are looking to their job to provide a sense of purpose. Workplace culture dominates the agenda and employers are now more interested in an ability to lead culture change and embed behavioural shifts.
To read the full employment trends report and compare your salary, click here.
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