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As a future HR professional, what emerging trends or technologies should I be aware of and actively engage with to stay competitive in the industry and provide value to organizations?

3rd-year student at CSU San Bernardino

Major: Business Administration - Human Resources

I work as a student assistant for the student success center at the university

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Kjell’s Answer

Hi Dahrien - lots of great responses from my HR colleagues! Something that I will mention is this: business and industry acumen. Providing value is both a combination of "classic talent management" insights (e.g. attrition, benefits, competitive pay, etc.) just as much as it is understanding the industries, peer companies, trends, market challenges, and how that is affecting the organization or business you are in. Value is both in solving problems, but also framing what the problems (and opportunities are to be solved). So pay attention to leading consultants like Josh Bersin, Deloitte, McKinsey, or whatever industry/trade magazines you are interested in.

Kjell recommends the following next steps:

Pair these insights with trends in HR - see if you can get access to Gartner for best-in-class benchmarking and analysis, or read through current articles; but you may want to pick a field - there is too much going on to know it all. Stick to your strengths, or places you want to grow in and are willing to invest time to understand the subject, issues, technology, etc.
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Layne’s Answer

Great question! This answer applies to a lot of fields, but the emerging technology to follow is Artificial Intelligence or AI. It will affect Human Resources (HR) in a number of areas. AI is being considered to automate some of the transactional areas of HR. AI is also being used (somewhat controversially) in recruiting and hiring. As a result, AI has many diversity and inclusion implications that will need to be considered by HR professionals. AI can also be a positive resource, by helping you benchmark new programs, find policy language, and help you with research for common HR tasks. I would encourage you to read articles on the impact of AI to HR.

Layne recommends the following next steps:

Search for articles about the impact of AI on HR
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Victoria’s Answer

The suggestions provided previously are excellent. It's beneficial to stay updated with HR thought leaders like Josh Bersin and immerse yourself in leadership literature.

Beyond acquiring certifications, mastering specific systems, and seeking mentors, it's crucial to hone your soft skills. Regardless of your role, collaboration and project execution from conception to completion will be a part of your job. These are skills you can start cultivating both academically and in your part-time student employment. Moreover, start reflecting on your interactions with others, practicing active listening, and strategizing on problem-solving within a team setting.
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Diane’s Answer

The earlier two replies offer valuable advice. I'd also suggest that besides your education, obtaining a certification from SHRM or another HR-centered professional organization and actively engaging with that group can assist you in staying updated on current trends and preparing for the future.
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Gary’s Answer

Hello,

Terrific inquiry! Jill's response preceding mine offers a wealth of valuable insights. As someone involved in Recruiting and Human Resources, I stay updated on industry trends by following HR-related pages on LinkedIn. Recently, I've noticed considerable excitement surrounding topics like AI, diversity, the aging workforce, leadership, and neurodiversity.

Best of luck!
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Jill’s Answer

Excellent query! Each company you join will utilize distinct tools and systems, so it's beneficial to familiarize yourself with common Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), well-known Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS), and widely used payroll & benefits providers. However, focus on understanding their general concepts rather than mastering their intricacies, which will help you discuss them confidently during job interviews. It's essential to be proficient in Microsoft Office, particularly Word & Excel (or their Google counterparts), and develop strong organization, prioritization, and time management skills. As you progress in your HR career and take on more responsibilities, much of your learning will occur on the job. It's highly recommended to find a mentor for guidance and to ask questions. Don't hesitate to ask questions and collaborate with your colleagues. Additionally, stay informed about best practices and trends by attending free webinars from the Human Capital Institute (HCI) and reading books on coaching and leadership, like Dare to Lead by Brene Brown. I hope this advice proves useful!
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Talia’s Answer

Whether one likes it or not, AI is having a large impact on the industry, including the hiring industry. Some employers embrace it while others do not. Continue to follow new trends on how AI impacts Human Resources, especially the hiring process. Be aware of its strengths and weaknesses.
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Jeff’s Answer

Keeping up with the latest trends and shifts in within each of the functional areas - compensation, recruitment, benefits, etc is crucial. But there are two major areas that are set to revolutionize HR even more. The first is generative AI, and the second is data science and analytics. These two fields are not just emerging, but they are growing at an unprecedented pace. They hold the potential to transform HR in ways we can't fully grasp yet.
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