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Research reveals top concerns for HR profession in 2017

Pictured is Cascade HR CEO Oliver Shaw


A study commissioned by Leeds-based Cascade HR has revealed the topics most likely to keep HR awake at night in 2017.

Whilst a fifth of respondents said they don’t foresee any challenges as Brexit begins to unfold, the remainder highlighted recruitment, managing organisational change and staff morale as the overriding struggles they expect to encounter.

Reassuringly, 80 per cent of participants said their organisation is OK, good or excellent at managing major change. Yet significant areas for improvement were also identified, with 61 per cent stating better communication is required, 57 per cent striving for greater staff involvement/engagement and 50 per cent highlighting the need for improved planning.

Commenting on the findings, Cascade’s CEO Oliver Shaw, said: “The media has, understandably, been dominated with talk of Brexit in recent months. Yet we must acknowledge that change is now commonplace within the business environment. In fact, nearly three quarters of the HR professionals we polled (73 per cent) said that they encounter change on a frequent basis.

“So, whilst we must all develop plans to equip ourselves with the challenges – and opportunities – that Brexit may bring, we cannot become fixated on this issue alone. HR departments, in collaboration with senior management teams, need to analyse the ‘temperature’ of their workforce, and develop strategies to overcome all of the changes that may lie ahead.”

Two hundred and seventy five industry professionals were questioned in the survey, to uncover their plans and fears surrounding Brexit and other significant economic developments.  Fifty-nine per cent said they will rely on technology to help them manage such change.

Oliver added: “This is actually a stat I would like to see increase throughout 2017. HR professionals hold a wealth of data at their fingertips and tech vendors should be working hard to ensure clients make smarter use of the intelligence within their HRIS.

“The findings we uncovered from this research correlate with many of the topics our clients are asking us for help with. Recruitment, change management and morale/engagement are certainly hot topics for our customer base at the moment, but these are certainly areas that savvy HR teams are equipped to handle.”


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