Don’t be on the HR(MS) Titanic… Steer your ship into the future, not an iceberg

Don’t be on the HR(MS) Titanic… Steer your ship into the future, not an iceberg
07/15/2019 | UWinnipeg PACE
Author: PACE Categories: PACE Blog


Gone are the days when Human Resource staff simply push papers, administer paychecks, and keep track of sick days. The entire industry has undergone a renaissance as our culture undergoes huge changes – both in our personal lives and work lives.

Those cultural changes in the workplace are influenced by disruptive technologies, changes in demographics, and shifts in business strategies, according to KPMG Canada’s The Future of HR: 2019.

“The HR function has always been key to helping organizations face disruptions in their path. Today, however, those disruptions are more complex and arriving at far greater speeds, challenging HR professionals to do what they do, but on a larger and more strategic scale,” according to KMPG Canada.

As this shift in the workplace takes place, so does the role and terminology we used for the evolving roles of human resource managers. Increasingly, the term human resource management is morphing into being called people management or employee relationship management. BUT what does that all mean, how are those roles changing?

Today’s HR professionals do more than just oversee the traditional recruitment processes. From managing union relations, responding to the needs of the employees, and keeping abreast of changing technology, to diversifying the workforce, managing organizational change, and ensuring employees’ health and safety are a priority along with championing employee wellness, the list of what human resource teams take on goes on and on. It sounds like a lot, but without any of those functions an organization can easily fall apart, through the loss of the best employees, lack of organizational direction or, yes…people not getting paid.

It should come as no surprise then that HRM is a growing industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, thousands of new HR jobs will be created in the next decade, but competition for these positions is likely to be strong. Candidates with advanced training from post-secondary institutions, or professional certification and accreditation are expected to have a leg up on other applications, especially for higher-level positions. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that being prepared and marketable for the future is critical to a new HR manager’s success in the sector. 

Managing human capital, managing resources, and managing expectations takes a special skill set, and one that isn’t developed overnight. PACE offers two programs that prepare prospective human resources managers for the changing landscape. Keeping up with that change means being nimble. Believe it or not, this is a skill that can be developed and curated, regardless if you are new to the industry or in a senior position.

Both the Human Resource Management Diploma as well as the Advanced Certificate in People Management were developed to help graduates prepare for the changing landscape, whether someone is just starting out in the field or upgrading credentials to advance their career. Both programs are accredited though CPHR Manitoba, the professional association dedicated to strengthening human resources profession and upholding the highest standards of practice in human capital management, so graduates get a head start in the certification process even before finishing their program.

PACE HR programs are delivered in a variety of formats. From full-time in class programs for those just starting their careers, to part-time and online options for those transitioning careers to juggling multiple commitments in their work and personal lives, to the work-friendly format of our Advanced Certificate in People Management, which delivers modules over two weekends or mornings (3hrs) for an 8 week-period.

In the article Critical Strategies to Prepare for the Future of HR published by the Society for Human Resources Managers, Jill Goldstein, a global practice lead for Accenture – a management consulting firm, says  HR positions will be among the most influential in shaping the future of work.

“I can envision a future where HR professionals are no longer thinking that their job is to stay on top of current HR trends, but to reposition [themselves] to become workforce advisors," she says.

This repositioning will come through being agile and maintaining relevant skills through life-long learning and professional development. Programs like our Advanced Certificate in People Management was created specifically for senior HR leaders, to update their skills and stay on top of trends all while making industry connections, growing their professional networks, and shaping the future of the workplace.

Developed in partnership with People First HR Services, leaders in the industry, the program allows HR professionals to attend a session, work the concept through in a safe environment with others who can relate, then take it into the real-world - all within days. Making our program the testing ground for learning and innovation among HR leaders.

HR professionals need to be able to keep in step with issues like the evolving marijuana legislation, the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace, the onset of robotic processing automation (RPA), and the ability to use enhanced human resource information systems (HRIS) to better equip and assist in talent acquisition.

No matter where organization goes, even if it’s entirely cloud-based, HR managers will be needed. Keep yourself relevant by finding program upgrade your credentials regularly, and be ready to be a driver of change.

By staying agile, HR managers will be positioned to take a lead role in shaping organizations as we move beyond the age of disruption into the future 10, 20, even 30 years down the road. That means having not only HR skills but a solid business and management acumen. Being able to see an organization as a whole entity, not separating an organization from people is key to success and engaged workforce.

So…if you are already an HR professional make sure you keep your skills sharp. If you are excited to begin your career in HR make sure you choose education that will prepare you for the future of industry.


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