As the world continues to shift in the post-pandemic era, the function of Human Resources teams continues to evolve as well. While it seems that in recent history the HR function has been constantly adapting to evolving trends, the shifts we’ve seen with Covid-19 and the rise of hybrid and remote models have accelerated the rate of change and broadened the areas of focus for HR departments.
Whereas HR traditionally focused on hiring and compliance, they are now being pushed to take on additional focus areas such as retention, engagement, diversity & inclusion, and overall culture in a much more strategic manner. As new generations have entered the workforce, societal norms have shifted, new value platforms have been highlighted, and new work models (i.e., hybrid and remote models) have become more popularized, there has been an inevitable need for companies to react with new creative strategies.
Specifically, in the last few years, there have been significant shifts in what employees value, what they want in employers, and why they choose to leave or stay in their role. It has become necessary for HR leadership to develop and implement new strategies as they learn to place an emphasis on these areas within their workplace to successfully find, align, and retain employees.
We know tackling the HR needs of an organization can be complex – and at times overwhelming – so we’ve put together a few ways you can positively impact your company’s culture and move the needle with employee engagement and retention.
- Know your culture! It’s important to connect with employees through engagement surveys, leadership evaluations, favorable work environment surveys, etc. and collect feedback from your employees and stakeholders. Once you know where you are with your culture, you can develop an actionable plan for making enhancements or improvements where needed.
- Understanding your company culture and constantly working to improve it can also be a strategic approach for attracting and retaining new talent.
- Focus on your internal environment, while maintaining a bigger picture perspective. Doing so allows you to be cognizant of the disposition of your employees so you can implement any necessary training programs, mentorship opportunities, or other organizational support programs to help your employees be their best, all while keeping an eye on bigger picture employment trends.
- Regardless of demographic or workplace setting (i.e., remote or in person), employees work harder and are more committed when they feel appreciated. Show and verbalize appreciation for employees and encourage supervisors to do the same. See how we focus on gratitude here at FGP (Gratitude – A Simple Tool for Success).
- Be intentional in all aspects regarding cultural change and continuity. Look at the current landscape, work on what needs to change, evaluate change, and be intentional when going after new hires and when considering employee engagement strategies. Focus on building an organization that you want by targeting people of great fit, regarding both culture and demographics, and progressing with a mindset of diversity and inclusion.
- Acknowledge that one of the biggest factors in poor morale or culture stems from toxic employees – make sure you are dialed into this and make necessary changes where needed.
If we’ve learned anything over the last two years, it’s that embracing change is critical to organizational success. Maybe your culture isn’t what you want, and changes are needed. That’s ok! Shake things up with a team of people who are comfortable driving change and pushing outside of the box. We like to say at FGP, “there is no growth in the comfort zone,” which goes for both your people and your organization.
New trends and norms are here regardless of whether or not companies find them comfortable, and they are continuing to evolve. Strategic implementation of some of these employee engagement, diversity & inclusion, and employee retention strategies may have initially been formed as a way for companies to stay ‘one step ahead,’ but they have suddenly become requirements for success within a company. The bottom line? Hire great people, embrace change, be intentional, and be timely in your pursuits within an ever-evolving workforce.