Executives predicting significant disruption jumps 76 percentage
points within 12 months
One in three employees concerned that AI and automation will replace
More than half of companies in Hong Kong plan to automate more work in
next 12 months
Mercer’s 2019 Global Talent Trends study identifies four top
trends shaping the future of work
HONG KONG--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 26, 2019--
According to Mercer’s 2019 Global Talent Trends study, four in
five (82%) executives in Hong Kong predict significant disruption in the
next three years, compared to just 6% in 2018. As executives focus on
making their organizations “future-fit”, significant human capital risks
– including the ability to close the skills gap and overcome employee
change fatigue – can impede transformation progress. Addressing these
concerns is paramount, given that only one in three executives rate
their company’s ability to mitigate human capital risks as very
“Over the last few years, organisations have moved from anticipation to
action in preparing for the future of work. But they risk bewildering
people with too much change, ignoring the values individuals admire, and
inundating them with endless process,” said Ilya Bonic, President of
Mercer’s Career business.
In today’s climate of uncertainty, employees seek stability. Mercer’s
study finds that job security is one of the top three reasons employees
in Hong Kong join, and also stay at, their company. Yet, one in three
employees are concerned that AI and automation will replace their job.
The way to help employees feel secure is to foster human connections.
Thriving employees (those prospering in the areas of health, wealth, and
career) are twice as likely to describe their role as “relationship
focused” and their work environment as “collaborative.”
“The future of work is about connectivity, creating a work environment
that appeals to today’s workforce by building a coherent sense of
identity, sparking connections, and using data to tailor the
experience,” said Darryl Parrant, Mercer Hong Kong’s Career Business
“Personalisation of work is about moving to integrated platforms with
multiple devices that offer individual empowerment. This, however,
requires a self-service mindset among employees. We are working with a
number of high-growth companies in Hong Kong to shape a people agenda
that fosters a more proactive approach to development,” he continued.
Mercer’s study identifies four top trends that leading companies are
pursuing in 2019: Aligning Work to Future Value, Building Brand
Resonance, Curating the Work Experience, and Delivering Talent-led
Aligning Work to Future Value. AI and automation continue to
transform the competitive landscape – 54% of companies in Hong Kong plan
to automate more work in the next 12 months. At the same time, the
C-suite names job redesign as one of the top five areas of talent
investment with sizeable potential for return on investment, and 67% of
employees prefer more clearly defined responsibilities. The challenge
for HR is to build an integrated people strategy (an approach deployed
two times more frequently by high-growth companies) and leverage the
right talent analytics to inform decisions on the future size and shape
of the organisation – yet only two in five companies have good insights
into the business impact of their buy, build, borrow, and automate
strategies. “The key is aligning jobs and people to where value is being
created, and enabling a mechanism to reward future-fit skills and
behaviours,” said Mr Parrant.
Building Brand Resonance. What matters to employees and job
seekers is the way a company conducts business and upholds the values of
its brand. In a social, transparent world, the lines are blurring
between a company’s consumer brand and its talent value proposition
(TVP). Successful companies ensure that their brand resonates with all
workforce segments – 58% of high-growth organisations in Hong Kong
differentiate their TVP to different groups (such as contingent
workers), compared to 30% of modest-growth companies. An organisation’s
total rewards philosophy is one area where brand values can shine:
Thriving employees are three times more likely to work for a company
that ensures equity in pay and promotion decisions (82% vs. 26%).
Curating the Work Experience. An effective and relevant
day-to-day work experience is essential for retaining top talent.
According to Mercer’s study, thriving employees in Hong Kong are two
times more likely to work for an organisation that enables quick
decision-making (87% vs. 38%) and that provides tools and resources for
them to do their job efficiently (85% vs. 38%). Personalised and
simplified professional development plans are an ask from employees –
more than half (51%) of employees want curated learning to help them
evolve their skills and prepare for future jobs. Technology plays a
critical role here, but currently companies in Hong Kong still see
themselves as being on the journey to becoming a digital organisation,
with 52% saying they still have a long way to go.
Delivering Talent-led Change. To ensure talent is at the centre
of change, HR should have a voice in business transformation. This
year’s study found 56% of HR leaders in Hong Kong are involved in
planning the rollout of major change projects and the same number
involved in executing those plans. But, only one-quarter of HR leaders
participated in the idea generation stage of transformation initiatives.
HR sees employee morale as a significant barrier to making changes
stick: “Employee attrition” and a “decline in employee trust” are two of
the top five challenges in the year ahead. “These findings point to the
need for transformation efforts to focus on people-centered design and
better talent metrics to understand how people are experiencing and
embracing change,” said Mr. Bonic.
Mercer’s 2019 Global Talent Trends studyshares insights
from over 7,300 senior business executives, HR leaders, and employees
from nine key industries and 16 geographies around the world. To
download the report, visit https://www.mercer.com/global-talent-trends.
delivers advice and technology-driven solutions that help organizations
meet the health, wealth and career needs of a changing workforce.
Mercer’s more than 23,000 employees are based in 44 countries and the
firm operates in over 130 countries. Mercer is a wholly owned subsidiary
& McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), the leading global
professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy and people.
With nearly 65,000 colleagues and annual revenue over $14 billion,
through its market-leading companies including Marsh,
Carpenter and Oliver
Wyman, Marsh & McLennan helps clients navigate an increasingly
dynamic and complex environment. For more information, visit www.mercer.com.
Follow Mercer on Twitter @Mercer.
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