The gig economy, remote workers, flexible schedules, and other trends in employer/employee relationships have far reaching consequences for HR departments. The 9 to 5 office model where workers are tethered to a desk all day, every day is becoming obsolete along with other standard business practices. To stay relevant and attract the best talent, HR departments must change how they serve employees throughout the employment lifecycle.

As partners to HR departments and their employees, we are committed to providing the best solutions to meet organizational needs and the needs of a quickly evolving workforce. Understanding what those needs are means we must constantly track the trends in the marketplace and identify how employees’ preferences are evolving.

Recently, we’ve noticed a rapid change in three areas that will have significant impact on how HR departments serve up services to employees in the near future. These trends will continue to change how organizations structure their relationships with employees and will further drive the adoption of flexible HR solutions.

Flexibility has become the HR standard

An EY survey of 9,700 fulltime employees in eight of the world’s largest economies revealed that flexibility is a top feature employees want in a job. In fact, the only benefit to rank above flexibility is competitive pay.

The growing gig economy has generated a greater demand for flexible work schedules. In fact, about 33% of the U.S. workforce, or about 54 million employees, participated in freelance work in 2015 and that number is growing. The workforce is trending toward workers who take control over their schedules and expect their employers to offer flexible work arrangements.

Mobile accessibility is part of the job search

The growing popularity and use of mobile devices has changed how employees get and interact with information and services. The majority of job seekers now rely on smartphones to conduct their job search activities. Glassdoor reported that over half (54%) of visitors to its site each month come from a mobile device. Mobile accessibility has become as integral to finding a job as computers were nearly a decade ago.

The reliance on mobile devices has also changed how employees expect to take advantage of HR services. Today’s youngest generations—from millennials to GenZ—have spent the majority of their lives interacting with services like Amazon and Instacart where accessibility and immediacy are the standard. The mobile world has created a change in lifestyle and expectations. To retain their competitive edge and attract the best talent, organizations must respond to these trends by providing HR services that workers can access on a variety of devices.

All generations expect immediacy

While millennials might be the most talked-about generation, they’re not the only workers demanding immediate access to software and services. We’ve been noticing a positive trend among our own clients who have mobile access to outplacement services. Clients who have the flexibility to use RiseSmart career transition services on mobile devices have a smoother and shorter path to landing their next opportunity. Giving workers immediate, mobile access to outplacement services removes common barriers to adoption, allows them to respond immediately to scheduling changes, and provides an elevated level of convenience.

Organizations that want to stay ahead of employment trends and continue to attract and retain the best of the best, need to consider using the technologies and services best suited for the changing workforce. Ease of use, flexibility, and mobile accessibility are things that employees and job seekers expect when they interact with brands and their HR services. Companies that consider the need for flexibility, mobile access and immediacy when choosing HR solutions will be more likely to stay relevant in the marketplace.

When companies invest in HR services, such as outplacement or re-deployment, the ROI on those investments is only realized when employees use them. Giving employees instant, virtual access to services increases the likelihood they will use the services and improve HRs return on investment.

At RiseSmart, we recognize that the changes in workforce management have significance in how outplacement services are adopted and used. Our innovative outplacement solutions have stayed current with important trends allowing us to strike a balance between creating a useful HR product and catering to the needs of today’s mainstream employees.

In response to the growing trend toward mobile use, we’ve created a downloadable mobile app version of our outplacement offering. The app is available for Android and iOS and allows employees the most flexibility to access resources such as webinars and job opportunities at their convenience. Through the app, employees gain immediate access to services that help them land their next job regardless of their location and the time of day. We offer the mobile app as part of our standard packages because we recognize that outplacement services designed to support mobility and flexibility are key to helping employees transition successfully to the next phase of their careers.

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13 December 2016

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