Businesses across the UK are facing a momentous task to recruit and retain employees according to new, independent research by Natural HR, the leading provider of all-in-one HR and payroll software.
The ‘HR in 2019 and Beyond’ report set out to explore the current state of the HR profession and includes the results of a survey of 219 UK-based HR professionals. Examining the trends, challenges and opportunities facing HR departments across the country, the findings shed light on the varied mindsets, anxieties and hopes facing professionals working in organisations ranging from sub-hundred employees to corporate giants with over 5,000.
The key findings of the report include:
- 22% of HR professionals feel as though the HR department is not valued within their business, citing “no place in the boardroom”, “not considered as part of the senior team” and “HR is viewed as operational support, not a strategic partner” as reasons why they feel this way,
- 47% of males working in HR earned over £45,000 compared to 39% of women. However, of those that reported earning more than £100,000 per annum, 55% were female,
- 78% of those working in the education sector earn more than the national average,
- Key priorities for the future include recruitment and retention (68%), improving employee engagement (59%) and performance management (53%) with the biggest challenges including recruitment of talent (42%) and employee retention (33%).
Natural HR’s research suggests a shift away from traditional HR tasks such as pay and legislative compliance towards the experience and happiness of employees. Important initiatives supported by respondents include ensuring positive employee wellbeing (75%), promoting positive mental health (69%) and flexible working (68%).
This report paints a complex picture of the UK’s HR departments in what is an exciting but increasingly uncertain time for HR professionals. While it is clear that business leaders are becoming increasingly aware of how instrumental HR is in wider business success; for some, HR is still viewed as a purely administrative function.
Sarah Dowzell, COO and Co-Founder of Natural HR said: “What is apparent from our fascinating research is that HR professionals in the UK are passionate about their work and are striving to make a difference to the overall success of their organisation. With clear plans to develop their strategies and stake a claim in those all-important board meetings, one thing remains a constant: the desire of HR professionals to empower, engage and motivate their people to be the best they can be.”
The full ‘HR in 2019 and Beyond’ report can be downloaded here.