This DATIS Blog Article, “To Innovate Or Not: What Does Talent Acquisition Do Next?“, was originally posted by Marie Burns, Future of Talent Institute, on October 26th, 2016 and was reposted with permission.
Year-over-year, one trend in talent acquisition remains: innovation at scale is not, well, scaling. We see more and more of the same types products, “me too” solutions, and a lot of product testing, but not much leading. As a lover of innovation, sitting idle while other industries surpass talent acquisition and HR technology with solutions that we should be building is frustrating. Quite often, many leading voices claim new products or solutions as useless. It’s commonplace to hear claims “that X technology won’t work for talent acquisition”– and my question is, “why not?” Why can’t we mix new innovations with talent acquisition if they’re useful? What’s the big hold up? And why does it feel like we’re still stuck in 2000?
Talent Acquisition has a drastic need for increased innovation, education, and a general push for ideation. Unfortunately, it seems tactical execution and order taking is our natural disposition. Alan Kay eloquently stated: “The best way to predict the future is to invent it”. So, let’s start. Isn’t it about time?
“The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” – Alan Kay
GENERAL ADVANCEMENTS: HOW WILL IT SHAPE TALENT ACQUISITION?
There is only so much room in one post, but let’s think about what’s happening in the general world, and how it might affect talent acquisition.
I think we’ve all read about Gen Y, Gen Z and Gen X as leaders. Within the next decade, Baby Boomers will mostly exit the workforce and Gen Y/Z will make up the largest percentage of workers in the workforce. When the shift is final, the dynamics of workplace attitudes will solidify and we will see a major power shift and head into a drastically different era of flexibility, distributed teams, creativity, innovation, etc. It’s not too far off. Wait, it’s already here.
Personalized Medicine and Cell Therapy Adoption:
The word is out, personalized medication and more enhancements are (and have been) in clinical trials. In 5-7 years, trials will be ending and the approval process begins. Then, it’s ready for mass market distribution within the decade. What does this mean? We’ll live healthier, longer lives. The population percentage will increase and employment tenure increases.
Collaborative, Crowd Sourced Sharing Economy:
The collaborative/sharing economy is making it easier than ever to move, live, work and find employment anywhere in the world. Overall, Gen Y/Z are not interested in purchasing expensive assets, so the ease of access to living quarters like Airbnb, transportation via Uber, or Hubway are becoming popular choices. If someone can create an intelligent business model, they can launch and test their idea on crowdsourced platforms like Kickstarter with minimal risk, or even bootstrap it (just check out ProductHunt, daily).
When it comes to finding work quickly, collaborative labor platforms like Upwork and Freelancer make it simple to find work within a day. Options are available to help dreams become reality, quickly. The collaborative industry will continue to disrupt how we acquire talent. It’s something you likely notice, already – but don’t know where the lack of talent is coming from. They’re creating their own companies.
Tuition continues to rise, job skills change faster than the education system can keep up with, and new forms of education are popping up everywhere. For now, high school graduates will still flock to college, but as expenses increase, the next generation workforce wants to learn, but with laser focus after foundational learning. The importance of accelerated and laser-focused learning is to ensure – for the candidate – the best job with the highest salaries as soon as possible upon graduation. This need has also created a world of bootcamps, incubators, accelerators, online courses and MOOCS that seemed to emerge almost overnight. The skill-specific training is invaluable and creating a workforce that can learn almost anything at anytime. College can not be replaced yet, but now, neither can MOOCS or accelerated learning platforms.
Major Technology Advancements:
There is massive innovation in tech. Things we haven’t even dreamed of. Even basic new products are mind-boggling. Think of the possibilities for talent acquisition to inter-mix technology with human capital programs like: enhanced virtual reality, holograms, IoT, Glass Technology, emotion reading technology, robots. Combining some basic technology could completely transform the experiences candidates and employees have. And these enhancements are just the beginning.
THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING. WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT?
If you have the desire to jump on the innovation bandwagon, you can jump on without building anything at all. The first step is opening your eyes and being open to change, and keeping your finger on the pulse of economic and societal circumstances. This along will help position you and our industry for increased success and the respect we deserve.
The first step to the change we need is simple: open your mind to change. Advocate for it. Execute.
Next series will cover how to think about innovation as an industry and execute within your own organization.
Join the conversation to discuss old, new, and future thoughts, rants – or anything at all.