3 HR Insights That Will Propel Your Workplace Culture This Year

Business.com / Human Resources / Last Modified: June 7, 2017
Photo credit: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock

Insights – a word that every HR department has a love-hate relationship with. When it’s thrown around in conference rooms, meetings, proposals, and pitches, it’s often reduced to being a buzzword with no real significance or impact. But when it comes to workplace culture, HR insights do matter.

Insights – a word that every HR department has a love-hate relationship with. When it’s thrown around in conference rooms, meetings, proposals, and pitches, it’s often reduced to being a buzzword with no real significance or impact. But when it comes to workplace culture, HR insights do matter.

Culture is something that is often arbitrated in a company’s Human Resources department. Before discussing these insights, though, it might be helpful in establishing a basic understanding of the purpose of having an HR department, and what HR management entails. The department or support systems responsible for personnel sourcing and hiring, applicant tracking, skills development and tracking, benefits administration and compliance with associated government regulations.

Not only is HR management important for you, your employees, and your company and workplace culture, it’s a crucial safeguard to any potential legal problems. Whether your culture is poor, sufficient, or wildly successful, HR is an area of concern from which insights can always benefit and support your culture, and therefore your business. With no further ado, here are three HR insights that will propel your workplace culture this year:

Align, or realign, your employees to your company identity.

Your company’s central purpose, shared values, and common goals aren’t just a marketing ploy. If your employees aren’t aligned in purpose, values, and goals, your culture will go awry. This insight requires you to tap into the emotional bond that you share with your employees, and the emotional connection that they share with each other.

Concerning culture, emotions are tied to everything – motivation, productivity, engagement, satisfaction, and more. Are you having trouble doing this? Tools like Deloitte’s CulturePath provide innovative assessments on culture-indices that are directly tied to business outcomes. Obviously, using this insight to your culture’s benefit requires a high level of emotional intelligence and great leadership. That should go without saying. We don’t live in a perfect world. This HR insight is something that, even in the best of times, must be held to a high priority, or your culture just might deviate towards a workforce that only shows up for a paycheck.

Employee engagement surveys are still functional and useful.

According to a survey sponsored by CultureiQ, the three most common ways that HR departments manage corporate culture are employee engagement surveys (55 percent), culture committees and events (29 percent), and employee resource groups (20 percent). When it comes to HR, a lot of people will tell you not to reinvent the wheel – or try to reinvent the wheel. While I’ll tell you to take that with a grain of salt, because technology has taken HR management into digital realms that the corporate world has yet to adequately adapt to, I do stand by employee engagement surveys.

Even in the most open of open-office layouts – a characteristic of millennial corporate culture that’s growing in popularity – there are issues and concerns that go unnoticed or are buried. Issues and concerns that only surveys can uncover. In this case, anonymity is usually recommended. What employee engagement surveys will provide to your HR department is a mix of qualitative and quantitative data straight from the source and unhindered by fear of consequences.

Educate and learn.

One of this year’s Top 10 HR Trends is continuous learning. This has always been an important insight, but especially in the age of technology. Success in business calls for your company’s need to be an organization that values learning and development. While the average length of professional careers remains past the half-century mark, the average tenure at a job sits at four and a half years, and the half-life of a learned skill is about five years.

What this HR insight suggests is that your culture should nurture learning and embrace change. Disruptive technology is making it difficult for companies, large and small, to adapt to our world’s new dynamic corporate environment. As always, leadership is a key determining factor in what Learning and Development (L&D) looks like for your company. This leaves no place for ego or pride as you and your company’s leadership need to be willing and eager to learn from anyone within your company. With that said, teach and learn the right things. Technology should be a tool, not a weapon, that’s learned and applied to your company’s strategies.

Above all, always trust the process. It takes a positive mindset and a whole lot of optimism to understand and employ these HR insights for the benefit of your culture. A great way to approach HR insights, be it aligning everyone to your company’s core purpose and beliefs, using employee engagement surveys, being committed to constant learning, or more, is to be proactive. Don’t wait until you need them. Your culture will thank you for it!

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