From AI solutions to machine learning, there’s no one single way emerging technology is shifting the people function. A recent report from Brandon Hall Group found that industry trends are impacting the use and need for new HR Technology – most emphatically in the rising cost of talent and the impact upon best practice.
With this in mind, HR Tech News caught up with Jeff Miller, AVP of learning & organizational effectiveness at Cornerstone OnDemand, who regaled us with how exactly our departments have changed with the evolution of digitalization.
“Fundamentally, when you look at the people function, we’ve seen a shift in the nomenclature used,” prefaced Miller. “In the HR world, most people would cite Learning & Development – but just 10 years ago it was called training.
“Primarily, the training was delivered by an instructor who would impart their knowledge on others in order for them to learn. But since technology, this has shifted.”
Essentially, Miller tells HR Tech News, that historically employees would be hand selected to go on leadership courses – which could last anything between six to eight months. During that time, you had to travel and attend lectures and invest a lot of your daily hours into the one training course.
“Now, with the advent of microlearning and eLearning, employees have the ability to go and source this information for themselves. This means it’s becoming much easier not only for people to find that necessary knowledge but to also find it in a variety of lengths and depths.”
Learning and Development may well be one the of the main sectors to be revolutionized by technology. The method of ‘Netflix-style’ learning, where employees select individual and personalized courses to compete from anywhere at any time, has turned the traditional model on its head.
“Many companies teach a program called Situational Leadership, which is normally a two-day program,” added Miller. “What we found was that by moving Day One to an online program, we were able to streamline and build better consistency of information understanding from our participants. So, when the attendees came to Day Two their conversations were deeper and more meaningful - everyone has a better understanding the content.”
This new world of instant gratification means that employees will have to stay ahead of the game in order to remain relevant. An HR leader may have excellent credentials, but if they are reluctant to evolve with the times then they’re basically redundant.
Miller highlighted one-way employees can remain relevant – honing their soft skills.
“Over the last year or so, I’ve had the good fortune of partnering with a group called the Institute for the Future, based in Palo Alto,” he continued. “We’ve been doing a lot of focused work around FUTURE SKILLS: Get Fit for What's Next.
“What I’ve found from this is that we really need to be more focused on our soft skills. For instance, empathy – being able to offer proper feedback. Also, not just understanding how to program technology but becoming digitally fluent and ‘befriending the machine’.”
The other aspect the group is looking at involves brining more voices to the table. As technology continues to impact the world of work, people will always be connected through mobile technology.
What leaders are now realizing is that whilst tech continues to become more pervasive, people are becoming increasingly isolated because they’re buried inside their computers.
“Many companies are coming at this from a D&I perspective,” added Miller. “Diversity can now be defined as understanding more about each other – so when people have a different perspective, they’re able to come to the table and share that opinion.”