Spring HR Tech Day 3 highlights: What’s done and what’s next?

Pandemic recovery, lessons learned, and what’s done and what’s next for HR leaders and HR technology took center stage Thursday at Spring HR Tech, the free conference happening online this week. Thousands joined the event from around the world to hear from industry experts and learn about new tech solutions available as organizations look to what’s next after a year of dramatic shifts in the workforce.

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Here’s a quick look at some highlights from Thursday’s sessions.

Related: Read more Spring HR Tech coverage here.

What’s done? Annual employee surveys and overlooking frontline managers for leadership training are just two common HR practices that should find their way to the trash heap, speakers said.

Replace them with continual listening (surveys) and investments that make sense for business success (lack of training). Regarding engagement surveys, Lydia Wu, head of talent analytics at Panasonic North America, made a point that probably hit home for many in the mega session: “Can you imagine what your user experience would be like if Instagram just listened to you once a year?” Read more here.

That lesson also was important for The Timken Co., which relied on SAP SuccessFactors to improve engagement, particularly around creating a program to develop engaged leaders. Read more here.

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What’s next? Other HR practices that deserve more attention in 2021 include efforts to maintain culture, despite the massive disruption experienced in 2020, and to support skills growth for employees, several speakers said.

Culture helped two organizations under significant pressure succeed, despite their very different challenges last year, as attendees heard in a spotlight session featuring CHROs at The Parking Spot and Northwell Health. And the need to maintain focus on that doesn’t change this year; in fact, it’s even more important, they said. Read more here.

Employee skills growth was a key concern even before the pandemic and, given the acceleration of the past 12 months, it’s even more vital now. Recent Cornerstone research has identified a skills “confidence gap” that HR leaders need to watch and respond to.

Also on the horizon for HR leaders? Aligning your HR digital purpose with your organization’s purpose so you can develop a “whole-person” approach to your digital transformation. The pandemic, racial injustice, social unrest and everything else that has changed the way people work requires it, keynoter and analyst Jason Averbook said in his keynote. Read more here.

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Elizabeth Clarke
Elizabeth Clarke is executive editor of Human Resource Executive. She earned a journalism degree from the University of Florida and then spent more than 25 years as a reporter and editor in South Florida before joining HRE. Elizabeth lives with her family in Palm Beach County. She can be reached at [email protected].