Uncover how organisations are taking advantage of the opportunity to redesign work, working and the workplace.
This is a moment of profound opportunity: to pick up the tools of empathy learned and honed during the pandemic period and carve a new way of partnering that is more Resilient, Sustainable and attuned to the New Shape of Work.
Last year, nearly 11,000 Executives, HR Leaders, and Employees told us what’s top of mind for them. We heard loud and clear that Relatable Organisations are leading the way in reshaping work, working, and the workplace. What are they focused on? Our research shows that Relatable Organisations have five things in common: They are constantly resetting for relevance, figuring out new ways to work in partnership, delivering on total well-being outcomes, building for employability, and harnessing collective energy to drive transformative change.
According to 2,474 HR leaders around the world, these efforts continue into 2023. They recognize that even in the face of sociopolitical and economic uncertainty, these priorities must remain front and center for organisations and individuals to thrive.
Global Talent Trends 2022-2023 - Video transcript
An upside-down world demands new ways to relate
Grandparents and grandkids are connecting on TikTok®
Computers know us better than we think
Our children now learn from chatbots
The challenges aren’t over yet
Organizations must adapt
60% of executives worry top talent won’t return to work
98% of organizations report significant skills gaps
81% of employees feel at risk of burnout
Turning the world right side up means …
Reflecting employee values
82% of employees expect their employer to do what’s right for society
Harnessing the positive
Employee’s top prediction is the future of work will be more balanced
Making moments matter
High growth companies are twice as likely to design work experiences for different personas
Welcome to the rise of the Relatable Organization
Global Talent Trends 2022
The pandemic underscored the importance of being opportunitistic and resilient – for organisations and individuals alike. 2023 will be a defining year as ambitious transformation plans and persistent challenges come face-to-face with new realities. HR will need to maintain energy and momentum to ready itself and the business for what lies ahead.
Find out in the 2022-2023 edition of Mercer’s Global Talent Trends Study.
Relatable organisations are redefining how they interact with their workforce and contribute to society. They are challenging legacy notions of value creation, and building for a future that is more sustainable and equitable for all.
Reset for relevance
The events of the past two years have left an indelible mark on investor, employee and consumer attitudes. The new world of work – more nuanced and personalized – demands a reset of priorities and new skills around listening, learning and adapting to identify and address unmet needs. Companies that fail to adapt will lose the ability to raise capital, attract and retain talent, and stay relevant. Relatable organisations are coming off mute on what they stand for, and setting “good work” standards that reflect the values of all their stakeholders. They relentlessly listen to what drives consumer and employee behavior, and build cultures and practices that are adaptive by design.
Reset for relevance - Video transcript
We started to work on something that we are now calling U-Work. So this is the internal branding. We have found, Kate, a way of creating the third way that we are calling internally. We we've built a model, an employment model, a new type of contract that is a hybrid, sits in between being a full time equivalent and being a gig worker. It's an employment contract that actually delivers the promise of, I want security but at the same time I want flexibility.
So how this works is basically, you as a Unilever employee decide
to waive your lifestyle as a full-time equivalent, and you are proactively joining the U-Work model. Under the U-Work model you continue to be a permanent, permanent, Unilever employee. We're not cutting corners. You are a permanent employee. You retain your service from the moment that that you joined whenever you did. And together we agree, on an annual retainer. An annual retainer, that we will settle monthly. It doesn't matter if you are working for us, or if you don't.
So this is an important message which is every month in your bank accounts where you used to get your pay slip, there is a flow of income that you as a U-Worker will continue to get. There are moments where we may call you because we have cool work to offer to you based on your experience and your skill set. And, should you accept to work for us and to contribute to that project, in addition to your monthly retainer you will also get assignment pay that that tops up your income. Again, you are not mandated or forced to work every time that there is an opportunity. But, but when we have work we will get in touch and let you know this is what we can offer. Are you interested to work for us?
Again, whether you are working for Unilever at that point or if you are not. And in addition to that monthly retainer, we're also providing pension. We're also providing health care. We are also providing benefits. There is also a nice learning allowance because we want these people and their skill set to always be what it needs to be so that they don't lose their mastery.
The beautiful thing again about this model, Kate, going back to traditional employment you are, you can say I work for Unilever. I'm a permanent Unilever employee. But at any point in time you could be actively working for another company for another business. You could be setting up your own company. You could actually be just caring after the elder parents, or looking after your children, or going back into university or traveling, as is the case of a of a number of people that that that that we have. I think that at this point in time that he's actually someone cycling in Australia because that's what she wanted to do. And I think that that's really cool.
And for people also that are phasing into retirement, or that's they probably at that that stage in life where they don't need to work 24/7, but they don't want to lose the fact that they could be still active, contribute to society. They love Unilever and want to continue to be associated with us. That's also a beautiful, a beautiful employment contract for people that want to phase into retirement.
But for me this is a revolutionary concept. The way that we've thought through this model makes it affordable for our P&L. It is sustainable over time, and it's something that at the same time is responsible for as an employer and towards our employees right. I think everybody wins a with this model. Everybody wins.
Work in partnership
People no longer want to work for a company; they want to work with a company. The future of work depends on flatter and more networked talent models, fueled by a more flexible, fungible and globally dispersed workforce. This represents a shift in the social contract of work, one that will succeed only if everyone feels they are getting a fair deal. In response, relatable organizations are developing a partnership mindset across their ecosystem. They are building business resilience by infusing equity and inclusion into their talent models, accessing broader and more diverse talent pools, and building out more robust supplier and partner networks. Today, “partnering” over “leading” might be a company’s biggest competitive advantage.
Work in partnership - Video transcript
Working in partnership is so critical for BMW, and I think the industry as a whole, because we see that this is a time of change. We are recognizing there is a strong competition on innovation and how we're going to shape the future of work. And I think, I know there is that saying you can't solve a problem with a mindset that created in the first place. And that's why you need another perspective. That perspective can come out of partnership with consultants that have a broader view of what is happening in the environment, and what new companies are trying to find of new solutions. But just as well in partnership with the employees, and really listening into their perspective, their needs, and letting them be part of creating that future so that we can make sure that we really find the best solution on what we need as a company to be competitive in this changing environment.
One thing that I really think that we, as BMW, but also in a broader marketplace, need to consider that equity is becoming a huge challenge in the future. People recognize the opportunities of remote work, but it really depends on the role that you have in the company. If you take, for example, my job, most of my management teams are sitting in different locations. And it's almost natural to me for me to work remotely with my leadership team. On the other hand, you also got assembly workers that don't have the opportunity to do it the same way. It really depends on every individual role on how we can get the most out of it, and how we can create the best fit, the best fit between individual needs and company needs. And how to really also create a future social engagement with a company.
And that is a really truly intense discussion that is happening right now. We’re figuring out the real sweet spot of how this is going to work in the future. That is a major challenge. We have traditional workers that have one assumption of how work should work be. But we also see how well things have worked during the past two years, and finding the best solution for everybody and the company as a whole, that is one of the major challenges that we're facing right now.
Deliver on total well-being
The pandemic exposed and worsened the health and wealth gaps for different populations, underscoring that accessibility and affordability of care is not enough. The well-being ROI that matters today is less about a return on investment (focused on reducing healthcare costs) and more about what makes a difference to drive current and future health outcomes of the workforce. This puts the onus on an employer to ensure the emotional, physical, social and financial well-being of their employees. Relatable organizations actively encourage healthy, rewarding and sustainable work behaviors and offer personalized support during moments that matter.
Deliver on total well-being - Video transcript
There are dimension, financial well-being, which we always doing, right. Different pension plans, different way to make money, so on.
Then there is emotional well-being, right? Then you have programs that helps you to get those, you know, counseling services, right? A known body where you can have objective counseling. That was also done.
Physical well-being absolutely important. Right? So importance of your physical fitness and lot of SAP locations have the gym facilities, and so on, and we encourage our employees by a different benefits program to avail to keep your body fit, right?
And then, of course, spiritual well-being is equally important. And I was never the kind who believed in spiritual well-being. But now, when I am in certain phase of my career, I believe that is equally important to keep the balance. So SAP offers lot of mindfulness trainings, lot of those kind of training to really foster or plant the seed that this is equally important. Two minutes of a mindfulness break is can be so powerful, right? Which we never even realized when we are working high pace.
So I think these all dimensions are coming sewn together, and the art will be, how do you communicate the total value proposition to the talents. And if you ask me, that's where we are right now, where we want to bring all dimension together to our talent and have digital ways to look at, in terms of their wallet, what are the different programs all coming together and treating you as a human keeping you in center and your needs in the center. So some work to do there for sure.
Build for employability
The significant supply and demand gap in both skills and workers has highlighted the role that organizations play not just in ensuring their own sustainability but also in safeguarding the future employability of their people. The pandemic underscored the importance of a skills-based talent model and agile work design in building the workforce of the future. More than ever, organizations are instilling a mindset of lifelong learning, democratizing work opportunities, and helping workers of all backgrounds and generations pave a pathway to prosperity.
Build for employability - Video Transcript
Building for employability is important as we strive to reach twice as many patients twice as fast with our innovative medicines. Our purpose is to reimaging medicine to alleviate society's greatest disease burdens in fields as cancer or multiple sclerosis.
We can only accomplish this by unleashing the power of our people. In realizing the strategic ambition, offering a democratic engaging and resilient talent ecosystem has been key for us. Identifying and closing skilled gaps by providing long-term learning agendas, as well as offering development opportunities helps our employees to remain employable. At the same time it helps the company to build business and relevant skills for today and tomorrow. To make internal opportunities accessible, we have opened our talent marketplace to all our associates around the world. We match our talent with opportunities based on their aspiration and skills.
Let me give you a few examples. Our talent marketplace not only proposes mentors for personal or specific skill development, but it also helps you learning about possible future career path and offers possibilities to really work on exciting projects and gigs. Which also helps at the same time staffing work in an agile way. To provide associates with relevant learning journeys and enablement we also support them in their skill building efforts. So we have interlinked our talent marketplace with potential assessment and learning experience platforms. Those are accessible to all our employees, regardless of location and level.
In 2022 we have reached more than 30,000 people who engaged in our skilled development marketplace and also our voluntary turnover has been only half of the industry average, according to Gardner. In 2023 you will see us expand our efforts to drive career and development of our people as we scale our skill based organization helping to ensure people are employable now and in the future.
I'm deeply convinced about investing into the future of skills and really strengthen the employability of our people, whilst accelerating business growth at the same time.
Harness collective energy
The “future of work” has been a hot topic for many years – but as the name indicates, it was always seen as a long-term play. The pandemic accelerated the timeline and exponentially increased the importance of new business models, new ways of working and new technologies. Ideas that were once met with resistance, skepticism and reluctance are now solutions to some of the biggest challenges of our time – and while people are exhausted, they are also much more optimistic. Now, companies have a unique opportunity to unlock energy by ensuring that the transformation agenda is centered around the human experience and to redesign work, working and the workplace for a new age.
Harness collective energy - Video transcript
In my mind when I think about harnessing collective energy, first of all, its harness human energy isn't it. So how do we really look at transformation through the lens of what is the human agenda and talent agenda is extremely critical.
To me, harnessing energy means couple steps. Number one is how do we keep the vision alive? At Bayer, we're very fortunate we have a very strong vision - Health for all hunger for none. And we know that is what's keeping our employee base, including myself, energized and wanting to come to work every day. So making sure that vision and the purpose is at the front and center of what we do, I think, is a critical source of energy.
But probably also very importantly, especially the pandemic taught us a lot of things, which is, we also need to recognize that each of us harness our energy differently. So making sure that we, as individuals, and we as employers encourage our employee to re-examine their own value system as well as re-examined and what fills their boat. What fills their energy tank and what drains their energy? And be able to have really open dialogues and discussions about it. I think it's really important. Creating that environment. We talk about psychological safety a lot to be able to allow people to come to have a comfortable, safe place to work. I think it's a very critical source of energy for a lot of people.
And I think the third element here is obviously for us to have our positive energy flow, things have to work, right. So the support system itself had to work. If we think about talent development in the new era of flexible work having a, you know, a sense of borderless talent development, regardless of where you are regardless of the physical boundaries, I think, is something that we have to make it work.
Making digital work is another aspect of this. Employee experience has to be seamless and frictionless, because we know that you know a challenging call to a share service center or a website that doesn't work simply drains energy. So, making the system work well behind the scenes is a critical part.
And I think the other piece about harnessing energy is making sure that our leaders understand the role they play. To me leadership role modeling and leadership expectations is critical here. In in today's day and age leaders are coaches. They are the ones that play the pick me up role, oftentimes, as well as the ones that sort of both pull and push the organization forward. So in some ways they direct the team's energy, whether it's positive or negative. And I think, how do we equip our leaders to have that kind of sensing mechanism to sense their team's energy as well as then have the tools to harness the energy positively is going to be really important. So a lot of work to do. But ultimately balancing the need to continue to drive transformation and change, and balancing the energy of the individuals as well as collective energy of the teams. I think it's going to be really critical leadership, and also HR task for the next couple of years to come.
Relatable organisations are focused on five key areas: resetting for stakeholder relevance, building adaptive capability in their people and processes, figuring out how to work in partnership and tackle inequalities, driving outcomes on employee health and total well-being, incentivising employability, and harnessing energy for the collective good.
How is your organisation forging new ways of partnering that are relatable, sustainable and attuned to the ways people want to work?
Benchmark your actions against the findings from this year’s study.