Quick Take: Bersin’s 2018 Human Capital Trends Report

by Natalia Garcia

Last week, Bersin by Deloitte published its 2018 Human Capital Trends Report, which outlines the growth of the “social enterprise” -- and the ways in which employers are focusing on citizenship, social impact, employee well-being, and inclusive growth. The report found that as organizations increasingly focus on operating as an ecosystem rather than multiple silos, social capital has become just as important as human, financial and physical capital.


Here are ten human capital trends that were explored in the report:


  1. The Symphonic C-Suite: Teams leading teams

The report found that the biggest challenge facing social enterprises is a lack of C-suite collaboration. 73% said the C-suite rarely, if ever, works together on projects, even though cross-functional vision and teamwork can be a huge competitive advantage.


  1. From careers to experiences: New pathways

In today’s rapidly changing world of work, organizations should help employees embrace lifelong learning and explore new pathways to career opportunity. But 59% of respondents rated their organizations not effective or only somewhat effective in empowering people to manage their own careers.


  1. Well-being: A strategy and a responsibility

Well-being is now a key corporate strategy -- and one that must be measured through performance and productivity metrics, not simply those that reduce the cost of insurance. 66% of organizations state that well-being programs are critical to their brand and culture.


  1. The hyper-connected workplace: Will productivity reign?

Is the pace of enterprise technology racing ahead of our ability to adapt? Seventy percent of respondents believe workers will spend more time on collaboration platforms in the future, and 67% predict growth in “work-based social media.”


  1. Citizenship and social impact: Society holds the mirror

This topic, which was rated important by 77% of companies around the world, is the one where companies feel the most behind: more than half feel unprepared to organize social impact initiatives in their organizations.


  1. New rewards: Personalized, agile, and holistic

Employees are asking for a holistic variety of rewards (bonuses, gifts, etc.) to match individual preferences, but only 20% of companies say their compensation strategies are aligned to the company’s business priorities.


  1. AI, robotics, and automation: Put humans in the loop

Businesses and HR leaders should understand that AI is a technology, not a solution. It may enable smarter decisions, but it has to be monitored and trained with humans who possess skills like “complex problem solving,” which 63% of respondents predicted will see tremendous future demand.


  1. The longevity dividend: Work in an era of 100-year lives

It’s important to build companies that promote, develop, and challenge young workers while supporting older generations to help fill leadership gaps. Twenty percent of respondents report working with older workers to develop new career models.  


  1. The workforce ecosystem: Managing beyond the enterprise

In the gig economy, “alternative work arrangements” are now the fastest growing workforce segment. 37% of respondents expect a rise in contractors by the year 2020, and HR leaders are finding new ways to align business practices with external talent.


  1. People data: How far is too far?

Amidst ongoing discussions about the role of technology in our private and public lives, the research found that taking responsibility for employee data is top-of-mind for business leaders. More than half of respondents are actively managing the risk of employee perceptions of personal data use.

Want to learn more about this year’s human capital trends? Bersin’s full report is available here.