HR tech news this week: Nov. 8-12

6 ways COVID-19 is changing open enrollment this year: Technology, mental health and more dependents are among the new aspects of the process two years into the pandemic. Some employers are embracing a hybrid approach and also embracing onsite, in-person support, says the head of enrollment at Guardian Life, but “technology is leading the way and is the overarching theme of open enrollment for 2020 and 2021.” Read more here.  

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5 steps HR must take to build a digital workplace: Creating a collaborative environment demands partnership with IT and facilities management and a key role from human resources. And it’s happening now. According to Gartner, 52% of organizations had a digital strategy in place in 2020 compared to 33% in 2018; meanwhile, 27% had an informal plan in place last year compared to 30% in 2018. Read more here.

How collaboration tech is changing for the new hybrid era: The smart use of collaborative tools will be essential to successful hybrid setups. A distributed hybrid working model will be part of this future, as illustrated by research that found 58% of U.S. workers say they’ll remain remote on at least a part-time basis, writes Simon Haighton-Williams. Read more here.

HR leaders take aim at hurdles for military veterans: Applicant tracking systems, hidden bias and mental health challenges are hampering veterans as they look to enter the civilian workforce. These systems are too rigid and formulaic and often weed out veterans because they don’t realize their military experience can be translated to civilian experience, says one DEI expert. Read more here.

Onsite COVID testing tech has arrived–but there’s a catch: Under the new OSHA rule, employers can use technology to test their employees for the coronavirus within certain limits. HR leaders have the option of bringing the testing in-house to have an administrator watch the test application and record the result, or using tests analyzed by a lab and reporting back to the company. Read more here.

Sage-Gavin: 4 ways to build talent for today–and tomorrow: Organizations are in the midst of a talent crisis. Ongoing labor shortages and the Great Resignation are creating what’s being called a “vicious feedback loop” for employers, where the workers who describe their companies as understaffed are also the ones considering leaving their jobs, writes HR Leadership columnist Eva Sage-Gavin. Read more here.

These CHROs say it’s time to ‘re-recruit’ your employees: At i4cp’s recent virtual conference, three HR leaders agreed that employers need to invest in reskilling and tech to improve employee engagement. “There is a war for talent and the pool we’re trying to siphon from is really small, so now more than ever, HR has to have a tight, strong bond with the business and be agile in its thinking,” said one HR leader. “We’ve got to take big swings on new ideas.” Read more here.

HR tech Number of the Week: ID theft: As open enrollment season continues, employers are considering adding a new employee benefit that has grown in urgency since the hybrid workforce became a reality in the COVID-19 pandemic: identity theft protection. According to a survey from Willis Towers Watson, 78% of employers will offer ID theft protection as an employee benefit by 2022. Read more here.

Phil Albinus
Phil Albinus
Phil Albinus is the former HR Tech Editor for HRE. He has been covering personal and business technology for 25 years and has served as editor and executive editor for a number of financial services, trading technology and employee benefits titles. He is a graduate of SUNY New Paltz and lives in the Hudson Valley with his audiologist wife and three adult children.