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Seven HR trends and priorities for 2017

By Jillian Phipps

What your organization needs to focus on in order for 2017 to be its best year yet

Sitting in your desk chair at work, you excitedly scribble a few New Year’s Day resolutions on a notepad. Your lofty list doesn’t contain vows to lose weight, quit a harmful habit, or spend more time with your family. Instead, it focuses on the HR accomplishments you hope to achieve in 2017. You understand the valuable role your business’s employees play in its success or failure. Sound a lot like your situation? Consider the following trends and priorities that might make 2017 one of your company’s brightest years yet.

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Recognizing companies to emphasize teamwork rather than individual performance will be a continued HR trend in 2017. Many managers believe developing diverse teams will help them to better meet customers’ needs and compete in a volatile environment. Due to having grown up engaging in team sports and collaborating with peers in the classroom, millennial and generation Z employees are uniquely qualified for teamwork at the office.


Engaging apathetic employees is a perennial priority for many managers. 2017 won’t be an exception. The numerous benefits of possessing an engaged workforce include:

  • Heightened employee satisfaction
  • Improved employee retention rates
  • Improved employee recruiting efforts
  • Increased worker productivity
  • Enhanced employee innovation

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Casual Workplace Culture

In 2017, the workplace will likely continue to become more casual. Formal suits and ties are being enthusiastically replaced with t-shirts and jeans or khakis. This phenomenon stems from both employees spending more time working from home and younger generations of workers rising in the ranks at companies.

Creative Compensation Packages and Perks

To lure the best and brightest new talent, managers are increasingly utilizing creative compensation packages and perks. In addition to fair salaries and healthcare coverage, they’re offering prized, potential employees benefits such as:

  • Flexible scheduling
  • Food allowances
  • Student loan repayment
  • College tuition reimbursement
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Workplace stress can contribute to a myriad of serious physical and mental, health issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and anxiety. To slash stress at work, managers are placing a higher priority on wellness programs. These beneficial programs can help companies:

  • Decrease rates of employee absenteeism
  • Lower healthcare costs
  • Attract talented employees

Examples of wellness initiatives include:

  • Private healthcare plans
  • Gym memberships
  • Counseling sessions
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Job Descriptions

Does your company utilize outdated descriptions for open positions? If you can’t remember the last time your business updated the required duties, necessary skills, and preferred experience associated with jobs, make it a priority for 2017. Completing this process will help your company both determine the right compensation plans for jobs and attract the most qualified applicants for positions.

Flexible Scheduling

Flexible scheduling provides benefits to both employers and employees. Employers can reap rewards from having employees work remotely during all hours of the day and night. Employees can better balance their family life with careers. Due to less stress and distractions, employees might also be more productive while working remotely. The undeniable advantages of flexible scheduling will make it a continuing HR trend for 2017.

working from home-1.jpgUndoubtedly, 2017 will bring both changes and challenges to companies. Managers who know how to adapt to a rapidly fluctuating marketplace will not only survive, but thrive. If you hope success in on the horizon for your company, consider the importance of the aforementioned HR trends and priorities.

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