HR study reveals critical leadership capabilities to meet future of work challenges

HR study reveals critical leadership capabilities to meet future of work challenges

The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) is blurring the lines between people and technology and is impacting on the way people work and the way businesses produce value, new research finds.

The study indicates business leaders and governments must adapt to these changes and support the workforce transition by developing new leadership capabilities alongside other people management strategies.

This key insight aligns with the thinking of Rialto Consultancy which has long called for a fresh leadership mindset as well as upgraded skillsets to meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and is committed to building these into its leadership programmes.

If managed well, the future of work may be one where many more people are able to fulfil their full potential, notes HR 4.0: Shaping People Strategies in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The study was conducted in partnership with the World Economic Forum, Saudi Aramco, Unilever and Willis Towers Watson.

HR 4.0 identifies six imperatives that business leaders, partnering with their human resources counterparts, will need to implement to successfully meet future challenges:

• Developing new leadership capabilities for the 4IR
• Managing the integration of technology in the workplace
• Enhancing the employee experience
• Building an agile and personalised learning culture
• Establishing metrics for valuing human capital
• Embedding inclusion and diversity

The study covers three sections. The first examines why the 4IR creates an impetus for transformation in people strategies and HR practices. The second outlines how business and HR leaders can respond through the six imperatives with practical models and case studies. The third describes how organisations are responding to the need for change with examples of emerging roles, technologies and critical skills for the future of HR.

If managed well, the future of work may be one where many more people are able to fulfil their full potential

“As the Fourth Industrial Revolution transforms work and the workforce, HR professionals must respond to proactively manage the future of work,” added Saadia Zahidi, managing director, World Economic Forum, and head of the Forum’s Centre for the New Economy and Society.

“HR leaders will increasingly need to develop skills and understanding of data analytics and technology, as well as supporting others to develop those skills to encourage employee experience and productivity.”

Commenting on the findings, Rialto Consultancy director Richard Chiumento welcomed the study as further evidence of the need for HR and business leaders to ensure they have skillsets that are fit for the future. “It is critical for their own career development and that of junior and upcoming managers and leaders in the organisation,” he said and continued: “These new leadership capabilities must be built into leadership development programmes so UK plc is putting in place solid foundations to effectively meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

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