The end of the year naturally brings with it a desire to review what has been and gone. In turn, we also look forward to anticipate which trends will be high-impact in 2017. There are many HR trends which will be sure to influence your working life this year, but these are three lingering issues which we feel will reach their peak in 2017.

Workplace flexibility

Popularity for freelancing was ever-growing in 2016 . The rise of those who work from flexible locations and potentially different time zones asks that businesses develop their stance on workplace flexibility generally. Technological advances ensure that productivity can remain at the level it should without all staff functioning within one room during the same working hours. Now this extends to permanent staff who want to improve their options too. HR should prepare for an increase in demand for this and should stay ahead of the technology which will be needed if businesses are to embrace flexible working.

The sharing and gig economy boom

Despite controversy in 2016, the sharing and gig economies are still continuing to grow. For businesses who adopt this style of work there will be an ongoing decrease in headcount but an increase in operational headcount. Extending fair employee rights, benefits and inclusion within the company culture becomes complex when operating in sharing and gig economies, this year HR will be challenged with finding solutions to this.

Employee experience

Blogs and studies around employee wellness and engagement were huge last year. As attention turned to the health and happiness of staff, there came a building pressure upon businesses to prove their commitment to their employees. If anything, 2016 was the catalyst for this trend and it will be ever-more important going forwards. HR will do well to begin actively working on this from the outset so that their businesses remain competitive and staff do not become discontented or unmotivated.

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