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Many of the challenges facing HR prior to the COVID-19 pandemic have been amplified. We know from the near 1,300 HR leaders worldwide who took part in the KPMG 2020 HR pulse survey that the pandemic has exposed significant skill gaps, shifted priorities, and accelerated digital transformation.

The traditional operating model of HR now needs reinvention. The pandemic has presented the HR function with an opportunity: the opportunity to stop firefighting — passively carrying out administrative duties — and think big to play the long game. It’s time to rise to the challenge and shape the technology and workforce of the future to help build successful, innovative companies, where the best people flock to work.

In our 2020 Future of HR in the new reality report, now conducted for more than 20 years, explores these four areas in detail:

The needs of a changing workforce

Rebuilding talent (more than three in 10 employees will need to be reskilled) through upskilling and reskilling is seen as the most important factor in shaping the future workforce.

Where technology investments are made

The largest investment is in new or updating learning and development platforms, with collaboration tools to support remote working as a very close second.

The top three capabilities required by the HR function

The top capabilities show that leaders are aware they need to pivot the HR function from acting as a mediator between managers and employees to delivering more strategic, value-adding activities.

What Pathfinder HR organizations do differently

Pathfinders (the top 10% of HR leaders) are more confident that their organizations can attract, retain, and develop the talent needed to meet growth objectives; they are also likely to layoff fewer employees. Learn how Pathfinders operate, invest, and prioritise differently from their peers.

HR Survey 2020