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HR professionals: Time to figure out what 2015 looks like

What recruiters and HR managers need to know to stay ahead of their peers.

HR professionals: Time to figure out what 2015 looks like

With Q4 underway and 2015 right around the corner, it’s time for HR departments and leaders to prepare for the issues and challenges the new year will bring. For Amal Zahri, managing director of talent acquisition at DriveTime, that challenge is competing for top talent — and she’s not alone.

“Going into 2015, our largest challenge is attracting and retaining the best mid- and high-level IT talent possible,” Zahri says. Because of increased competition, organizations are boosting salaries and adding lots of perks to get candidates’ attention. “You must have a compelling, unique value proposition as to why top talent should leave behind their current job to join your team,” Zahri says. “For DriveTime, that means developing a culture of future leaders in an innovative workplace.”

Matt Rivera, vice president of marketing and communications at Yoh, agrees. High turnover and a shortage of skilled workers will be headaches for hiring managers in 2015, he says. “Anticipate your challenges, or there's a greater chance you'll miss or delay your goals.”

Here are some other trends and issues that HR directors will be dealing with in 2015.


Whether it’s with changing labor laws, the Affordable Care Act or other new regulations, compliance will continue to be an issue, says Ed Adams, owner of EBS Consulting LLC. “Most HR managers are so busy providing daily HR services to their organizations that they simply do not have enough time to step back and verify that their policies and procedures are properly implemented and followed consistently,” he says. Keeping up with changing legislation can be difficult. Adams recommends an annual compliance audit to incorporate best practices.

Managing talent

Bruce Clarke, president and CEO of CAI, says talent management will also be a challenge. “According to a recent survey by SHRM, the majority of HR professionals say that managing talent and improving leadership development are the most critical HR challenges facing organizations for the future,” he says. Staying nimble and being able to adapt to these trends will be key, Clarke adds.

Jason Hanold, managing partner of executive search firm Hanold Associates, says many companies are bringing different HR roles under one roof to better manage talent. “We are seeing more companies bucket talent acquisition, training and development, and executive development under a broad talent management role, which makes a lot of sense as all of these functions are important in the life cycle of talent in an organization,” he says.

Data analytics

Using analytics to get better insight into talent management will be a major trend, Hanold says — but the insights have to be based on careful analysis. “Having the insights from sophisticated analytics is very different from providing reports from metrics,” he says. Make sure you’re digging into valid data and getting results that really mean something.

Tying it all together

The role of HR needs to tie in with the organization’s strategy and goals, Hanold says. “Plans for growth, new product or service lines, acquisition or divestiture, emerging markets or transformation based on cost control will all play a huge part in workforce planning and how you plan to invest in talent over the coming year,” he says. “Huge growth will lead to higher numbers in recruiting, new markets or products will lead to training and development.”

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