Top HR Trends 2015

Top HR Trends 2015

At the beginning of the year its always important to reflect on the year that was and try to learn the most important lessons associated with that year. Equally as important, is to look ahead at the year that is coming.

For the last few years we have reviewed what the international experts say will be trending in HR in the upcoming year and then to try to predict if those changes will in fact also be applicable in Namibia.

Forbes predicts the following trends in 2015; internships for Generation Z, millennials in leadership, honesty and leadership , widening of skills gap and the continuous job search.

This year we will review the predictions by Dan Schawbel a contributor on Forbes.

1.) Companies hiring Generation Z for internships.

We had to Google, Generation Z, to be brutally honest, but in Namibia internships are a contentious topic in itself regardless of the generation. Back to Generation Z, apparently this is the generation following the millennials. While the jury is still out on generational theory, we are of the opinion that the international generations (UK, USA & Europe) are a bit ahead of the local curve. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the behaviours and beliefs that are associated with the generational theory plays out somewhat differently here. With regards to internships though, this trend may well increase in 2015 in Namibia. There have been some good initiatives by among others the Centre for Cooperative Education at the Polytech as well as improved service and structure at the NTA will make hiring interns a topic that organisations will need to pay attention to in 2015.

2.) More millennials are taking leadership roles

Generational theory again, Forbes is saying that more and more Millennials (born between 1980 and 2000), are taking up managerial roles. Based on this calculation and using the international age cohorts and definitions this makes the oldest millennials roughly 35. They quote some statistics in this article saying that 27% of employed millennials are already managers and that up to 47% are striving to be managers in the next 10 years. Based on the approximate ages and projected experience levels, we expect this trend to be true in Namibia for 2015.

3.) Honesty becomes a revered leadership trait

Top HR Trends 2015

Top HR Trends 2015

Oh, how we pray that this trend is applicable in Namibia in 2015. Creating trust through integrity is a key challenge and requirement for effective leadership. With the international eye increasingly on Namibia, this trend is going to be key in our role in not just nationally but also regionally in 2015. A book we recommend is: Credibility: How Leaders Gain and Lose It, Why People Demand It by Kouzes & Posner discussed this quality at length and is worth the read. We focus in depth on this topic when we present leadership training in organisation as this quality is crucial in establishing trust and cooperation.

4.) The skills gap continues to widen.

Unfortunately this trend will also become reality in Namibia in 2015. Valiant efforts are being made by the government and the NTA and the NQA and all the relevant training providers, but as long as Namibia schools and training institutions are being measured on pass rates and not on the actual skills learned the skills gap will continue to widen. In addition to this, there seems to be a disconnect between what the industry demands and what the higher educational institutions deliver.

A quote from the Forbes articles states that “only 2% of companies are recruiting liberal arts majors but schools still offer those degrees.” As we mentioned in point one above, progress has been made to bridge the gap between theoretical/academic knowledge and real world experience, but there is still more that can be done.

5.) The continuous job search picks up.

Top HR Trends 2015

Top HR Trends 2015

The Forbes article states that “Companies are going to have to deal with even more retention issues next year [2015] as job hopping picks up.” Job hopping in Namibia is already a trend. Being in this industry one regularly sees the same resumes making the rounds. The same candidates job hopping and moving from the one job to the other without really having learned anything while they were there. It is no longer surprizing seeing a CV where the average length of employment is roughly 18 months to 2 years. Certainly, initially it may be necessary to move around a bit to find the right fit, but after the first few years of employment one should knuckle down and stay in a company and try to progress internally.

This job hopping is unfortunately not going to change when the standard fare for senior executives in e.g. Namibian SOE’s is a five year contract. Another good book on leadership we recommend is Al Mohler’s The Conviction to Lead: 25 Principles for Leadership That Matters. In this book Mohler suggest that we should measure our tenure at an organisation in decades rather than years.

You can read the full Forbes article here, we will be reviewing the next 5 predictions in our next article. The next 5 predictions are:

  • Mobile hiring and the mobile job search explode.
  • Social media posts used to attract and retain talent.
  • Succession planning becomes a top priority.
  • Women continue to seize power positions in the workplace.
  • More people stepping out of traditional career paths.

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