Future of Work

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FUTURE OF WORK | 07 RACONTEUR | 06 / 12 / 2015 raconteur.net COMMERCIAL FEATURE skills gaps AVOID where they're needed PEOPLE FLEXIBILITY sta MOTIVATED HR JOINEDUP THE FUTURE OF WORKFORCE PLANNING IS HERE Do you know what skillsets and talents you need to drive your business strategy forward? How do you plan headcount and stay ahead of skills gaps that could otherwise hinder your company's growth or erode competitive advantage? How do you streamline workforce spending in select areas of your business while growing expenditure in others? Workforce planning has emerged as a critical differentiator for companies operating in today's volatile economy. In the thick of this uncertain economy, one thing remains constant: talented employees are tough to retain. In fact, executives cite this as a top challenge and priority. According to a 2015 Harvard Business School Analytic Services report, 87 per cent of executives struggle to find talent and retain top employees, and have shortages in select areas of the business. 1 With disparate data culled from financial systems, human resources systems and third- party sources, HR leaders struggle to bring together the right information to make the right planning decisions about individuals, teams and departments. On top of this is the challenge of keeping that data fresh. But even the HR systems reside in silos. At the 2015 HR Technology Conference in Las Vegas, keynote speaker Marcus Buckingham, author of Standout 2.0, said: "Today we have disaggregated systems: my performance management system is here, employee engagement system here, 360 system here, Meyer Briggs or Strengths Finder results over here, learning management system over here. And the team leader is supposed to integrate it all." Addressing software vendors in the audience, Mr Buckingham asked for solutions that "just put it all together" so leaders can do a better job of creating the best team possible. Workforce planning informs decisions in each area of HR from recruiting to developing, deploying and retaining people. Yet these aspects are often considered separately. Done correctly, workforce planning provides the glue for your HR processes, and manages the levers of supply and demand for each of the HR functional components, all while holistically fine-tuning the balance between cost control and company growth. According to a 2014 Aberdeen Research report, 54 per cent of organisations surveyed still had manual or spreadsheet-based workforce planning capabilities. 2 The side effect is companies waste considerable time linking spreadsheets, consolidating numbers, troubleshooting errors and reloading data, resulting in the loss of business agility, missed opportunities in hiring top talent and hindering company growth. But the solution is more than just replacing spreadsheets, which are only a symptom of the real problem. The reality is most workforce planning systems are not built to either keep the plan easily updated or model for the future. These workforce planning challenges are not new. What's changed is the speed of business today. Address the need for accompanied speed in workforce planning that keeps up with business changes and you will have created real competitive separation from your industry peers. It's great to have the software and tools in place to understand, for example, which roles drive profitability, the optimal skills for a department, and how to manage current talent and the pipeline of incoming recruits to fill those roles. But connect how you do all these things and you will create a huge competitive advantage for your organisation. Why? Because only then can a company truly optimise its talent acquisition, retention, development and deployment efforts. This isn't a vision for tomorrow – it's here today. Anaplan, for example, provides a cloud- based enterprise planning platform to enable collaboration across regions, departments and hierarchy levels, fusing the best of three characteristics – dimensional, relational and in- memory columnar database architectures – to create a planning platform that scales to the needs of the business, regardless of data volume or planning process complexity. To stay competitive, companies can apply today's technologies against age-old workforce planning challenges, enabling organisations to plan collaboratively and unify workforce requirements for the current and future needs of the business. Collaborate with your executive team to agree upon strategic objectives for the company and the workforce, while prioritising your recruiting needs, and see the results cascade top-down to your business function operations. Cloud-based, zero-latency executive and operational dashboards then help you manage bottom-up inputs by HR and other business units to keep your strategic workforce plans freshly updated. Imagine if you could "white board" within your dashboard alternative workforce planning scenarios. With solutions like Anaplan, you can. Model in "what if?" changes in location, salaries and reporting structures, and see changes ripple through to financial and organisational impact, in real time. Plan out, for example, decisions about hiring for the same role in different regions, or splitting department or team responsibilities. Identif y your star per formers and collaborate on retention plans to streamline and accelerate the decision-making process. Heat maps within a dashboard reveal key metrics and trends when assessing your talent, in numeric terms that everyone understands – performance ratings, capacity for growth and retention risk. Pivot on dimensions for the insights you need to keep your workforce engaged and developing, both in their careers and towards your company objectives. Adjust and track recruiter capacity, whether internally or externally sourced, to identify bottlenecks in meeting your hiring objectives. Focus on recruiter performance metrics, including source of hire, advertising and marketing channel effectiveness, application rate, and time to fill. Finally, model and track your hires like you would while closing a sales deal. Easily integrate application tracking systems information and build in the process steps to ensure that everyone on your team maintains a consistent, quality candidate experience in the hiring process. With workforce planning solutions such as Anaplan, your company can now quickly adapt to change and optimise its most precious resource – people. It all connects. Department managers do workforce and capacity plans that roll into HR recruiting plans, learning and development plans, retention plans, and financial budgets. Because it connects, you can ensure your workforce planning process governs according to your global policies for assessing, recruiting, developing and deploying – something your spreadsheets were never going to be able to do for you. www.anaplan.com 1 Harvard Business School Publishing: Holistic Talent Supply Chain Management, 2015 2 Aberdeen: Workforce Planning: Mapping the Road to Success, 2014 With workforce planning solutions such as Anaplan, your company can now quickly adapt to change and optimise its most precious resource – people Source: Pew Research Center 2014 Now leaders are human first Business hierarchies are changing along with the qualities needed to be a modern leader C ast your mind back. From rock stars to royalty, the alpha dog at school to the athletes who in- spired us; growing up, our leaders always seemed to be born rather than made – and they were also somewhat out of reach. But the rose-tinted lenses are cast aside as our worlds become more interconnect - ed; we are better informed, more empow- ered and challenging, demanding two-way dialogue from those in charge. Organisational hierarchies are less fixed, less about command and control as they become more fluid and multifaceted. Our emotional quotient or EQ is now revered as much as our IQ. Honesty, listening, empathy, humility and flexibility are seen as essential traits in to - day's leaders, as important as courage, con- fidence and decisiveness have always been. Jutta Tobias of Cranfield University School of Management says the role of leader is evolving as the business environ - ment becomes more complex. "It is no longer about the lone male, John Wayne-style, big-jawed hero receiving ap- plause for solving everyone's problems," says Dr Tobias. "Leaders need to allow those around them to shine, stop being fearful of saying 'I don't know', and allow different voices and opinions to be heard." No longer reliant on externally driven fear or admiration, tomorrow's leaders need to derive their satisfaction from com - pletely different sources, looking inwards rather than outwards. Dr Tobias says: "They are not only lead- ing more complex dynamics, but doing so more publicly. Are they managing their emotions well enough? Are they respect- ed? Are they being respectful?" Modern leaders need to become trusted enablers of creativity and innovation for those they lead, and showing a well-re - garded weakness or vulnerability seems to be criteria for garnering that trust. In Why Should Anyone Be Led by You? authors Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones cite businessman and sometime national treas - ure Sir Richard Branson as exemplifying this, in turn cementing his authenticity. "Branson is particularly effective at com- municating his vulnerability," they write. "He is ill at ease and fumbles incessantly when interviewed in public. It's a weak- ness, but it's Richard Branson." Traditionalists might view these more sensory characteristics as more at home in funky, youth-filled London creative agencies, all beer and bean bags, than the more "professional" sector, but Maggie Stilwell, managing partner for talent at EY, disagrees. She says the introduction of flexible working three years ago has transformed the business. "It used to be about following the mother ship of the office without thinking 'is that the right place for me to be to get the output I need today?'" Are these softer, more touchy-feely ap - proaches coming at a cost to the bottom line? "No. We have seen a significant halo effect from doing something that is effectively logistical, a much bigger payback. We've realised if we drive engagement levels we also drive more growth, profits and higher staff retention," says Ms Stilwell. So why bring our mentors and managers under such scrutiny? Are certain sectors daring to review their executive models and winning in doing so? LEADERSHIP SAM SHAW First and foremost, the business world is responding to a talent war. Initially identi- fied by McKinsey in the 1990s before fall- ing away during the financial crisis, Jeff Grout, business speaker, consultant and coach, says the talent war is back with a vengeance as we witness "the toughest re - cruitment market in a decade". He says: "In order to attract the best can- didates, companies need to change the way they are doing things. Candidates are no longer concerned with their role and report- ing lines. They are more interested in how decisions are made, to what extent do they feel a sense of involvement. How it feels to work there is of utmost importance." While certain professions – health, legal, accountancy and finance – generally demonstrate more resistance to change, the fast-moving consumer goods and retail sectors come across as more enlightened, he says. Rather than being sector-focused, the size of the company is a more likely differ - entiator; smaller companies can be more nimble and try things out, while flatter structures are often more effective with fewer moving parts. Arguably, if everyone is an ideas person with ambitions of leading, it might lead to top-heavy organisational structures with too few following. Do we risk making our worker bees redundant? "In the UK we hardly manufacture an - ything anymore. We are a nation full of people with ideas and it is this intellectual capital that will be most important to the UK economy," adds Mr Grout. He foresees a world in which the core functions still exist, but will gravitate to - wards outsourced services as companies employ more contractors and portfolio ca- reerists become the norm. In terms of remote working, the multina- tional opportunity that sits hand in glove with that and information overload, tech- nology is behind much of this progress. Chief executive of Newton Investment Management Helena Morrissey calls it the "game changer". She is also chairwoman of UK asset man - agement trade body the Investment Asso- ciation, founded the 30% Club in 2010 with the objective of redressing the gender imbal- ance on FTSE 100 boards, is a mother of nine and recently appeared in Fortune maga- zine's list of the World's 50 Greatest Leaders. Ms Morrisey agrees the concept of lead- ership has changed significantly from one relying on command and control to being more about influence and persuasion. "Society and businesses are much less hierarchical and deferential – you don't get respect through a job title, but through what you do," she says. "The universal access to information along with the ability to contribute to opin - ion, thanks to the internet and rise of social media, has been the game changer here. Leadership needs to feel local and personal, even if in practical terms that cannot always be the case, if the leader is to be trusted." This comes back to Mssrs Goffee and Jones' idea of leaders managing their au - thenticity. Being seen to listen, commu- nicate and empathise is instrumental in helping that cause. Taking his local and personal leadership style more literally was former BBC direc - tor-general Greg Dyke, who ran the corpo- ration from 2000 to 2004. Having interviewed Greg Dyke on more than one occasion, Mr Grout says: "He took the view that leaders must first listen to earn the right to be heard." Stepping into the shoes of John Birt, whose reputation for being autocratic and London-centric preceded him, Mr Dyke took himself in a different direction. Or rather, several different directions outside the M25. "During his first 100 days in the post, he travelled to locations no director-general had ever been to before. He avoided the ex - ecutive dining room, queued up with a tray at lunchtime and asked everyone the same two questions – name one thing we could do to improve our service to our audience and second, tell me one thing I can do to improve your life at work." Within six months he reportedly had everyone in the organisation on side. "Very few leaders can say that," concludes Mr Grout. Honesty, listening, empathy, humility and flexibility are seen as essential traits in today's leaders, as important as courage, confidence and decisiveness have always been Share this article on social media via raconteur.net Helena Morrissey, Newton Investment Management chief executive, featured in Fortune magazine's list of the World's 50 Greatest Leaders WHICH LEADERSHIP TRAITS MATTER MOST? Percentage saying it is absolutely essential for a leader to be... 84% Honest 80% Intelligent 80% Decisive 67% Organised 57% Compassionate 56% Innovative 53% Ambitious Newton Investment Management

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