IES Perspectives on HR 2014

Blog posts

30 Jan 2014

Peter Reilly

Peter Reilly and Mary Mercer

The 2014 edition of our annual "Perspectives" report has now been published. Rather than focus on a specific theme, this year the report covers a wide range of topics. Some could be regarded as hardy perennials, like talent or diversity, but positioned in a new context. Others (eg outsourcing and zero-hours contracts) report on current areas of preoccupation for the HR function that have important antecedents. Then there are the new(er) kids on the block, like big data and crowdsourcing: novel concepts that again, it could be argued, have long-standing roots in business management.

A different way of viewing the research presented here is that it looks at the world from a number of angles, as befits a Perspectives report. Thus, we examine the questions considered from:

  • An organisational perspective - how can we get more flexible labour, greater workforce diversity, a more open culture, etc?
  • An employee perspective - developing personal resilience and dealing or engaging with organisational change, etc.
  • The impact of externally driven factors - how technology can help employee involvement (crowdsourcing) or understand interconnections better (big data).

These perspectives overlap. So, for example, developing personal resilience can help individuals but benefit the organisation too; creating an open culture may be good for surfacing internal tensions or reducing hazards, but might be just as important to protect external reputations by highlighting malpractice, given recent business scandals; and the zero-hours contracts debate is generated by the tension between societal definitions of fairness and corporate cost-reduction and flexibility imperatives.

We hope then that reading these articles will stimulate and provoke, yet also offer some more practical ideas. We have made more linkage this year with our members events so do look out for briefings and workshops on the topics that interest and stimulate you the most.

About Mary Mercer

Mary is a consultant experienced in operational delivery, project management and project direction. Her key skill areas include human resource and organisation development consulting, including flexible working, performance improvement, business process redesign and operational research.

Mary's philosophy is to deliver support that has a pragmatic and lasting impact, and she has a range of examples of how HR improvements can have a measurable business impact.

About Peter Reilly

Peter is Director of HR Research and Consultancy at IES. He leadesIES work on reward and on the HR function, and contributes significantly to HR planning and labour market projects. He has published IES reports on reward, human resource planning, HR shared services and outsourcing. He has written numerous articles and books on both reward and the HR function. He gives consultancy support to organisations on issues concerning HR strategy, planning and resourcing, retention, HR organisation, trends in personnel management, performance management and reward.

To arrange a media interview with Peter or Mary, please email or call 01273 763 414.

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