As we look ahead to a new year, we’re thinking less about healthy eating resolutions and more about HR trends. With the dawn of 2017 comes some exciting developments in the way you recruit, onboard, and manage the talent in your company. What may have seemed like a pipe dream just a couple of years ago becomes reality, thanks to renewed vision and dedication to the technology and ideals that help get us there. Here’s what we’re predicting for 2017.

On-boarding for Retention
According to a survey by Sierra-Cedar HR Systems, small businesses that had an onboarding program in place saw 54 percent better productivity from new recruits and experienced 50 percent better employee retention rates.

In short, on-boarding counts. It’s what introduces new employees to your workplace culture and answers all of their questions so they can start being effective team members from the moment they sit down at their new desk. And, since the recruiting process ties up significant resources, on-boarding is an investment more and more companies are willing to make.

Employer Branding
Branding usually falls squarely in the realm and rule of the marketing department, but don’t be so quick to judge it as outward-facing only. Small businesses won’t just be branding their packaging and advertising for customers in 2017, but for employees as well. Employer branding means cultivating a message that employees can count on, from creating a mission statement to on-brand training and communications.

Branding doesn’t only affect current employees, either: According to the 2017 LinkedIn Global Recruiting Trends Report, 80 percent of hiring managers and leaders agree that branding has a significant impact in luring, catching, and keeping great talent. It’s what makes potential employees want to work for you and new employees want to stick around. So, ask yourself: what message is your company sending?

Making the Move to Mobile
The last few years have been all about the cloud, but cloud-based and SAAS HR management methods have a few significant drawbacks. They can be bulky and slow, difficult to learn, and hard to take on the go. That’s why we’re predicting a great move to mobile-based HR management. Apps will replace cloud-based programs as more employees demand greater flexibility and HR managers require the ability to work anytime, anywhere.

Employee Flexibility
Speaking of employee flexibility, don’t be surprised if 2017 is the year that you hear the term from your own workers. Thanks to better tech, there’s less need for employees to be in-house (and less need for bloated overhead as a result). From conferencing software to screen sharing and mobile capabilities, almost any space can become an office space with the right tech.

Flexibility is a great draw for top talent, so brainstorm ways that your business can become more adaptable to a changing landscape. Adding more freelancers and contractors to your team, for example, or switching to performance-based tracking can help employees feel like they have the versatility to be excellent.

Death of the Annual Performance Review
Any HR manager can tell you that as far as analyzing employee performance goes, the annual performance review is kind of a drag. It takes tons of time and you don’t always get an accurate picture of an employee’s impact if you only check in every 365 days.

Instead, 2017 will be the year of the regular check-in. Managers will work shoulder-to-shoulder with employees and have regular conversations to assess how each team member is doing. That gives a better overall picture of performance, instead of one arbitrary assessment per year.

We’re excited to see the developments and changes in HR for the new year. While we definitely don’t have a crystal ball, one thing is clear: HR managers are working harder than ever to create excellence in everything from on-boarding to leadership succession.

What’s your 2017 HR resolution?

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