“Organisations with flexible work models will attract an unfair share of talent,” Jayant Kumar

New-age organisations, unicorns and startups have come up with innovative models and opportunities of wealth creation for employees. Incumbent and large-scale organisations have to reinvent their existing models to ensure that these sectors and formats do not get less competitive, believes Jayant Kumar, head-HR, Adani Ports & Logistics.

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Big changes in 2022

Progressively, ‘purpose’ will be the most fundamental and prime driver of career, engagement and work for the individual going forward. Economic considerations will continue to be important with a significant blend of ‘purpose of avocation’. The idea of the workplace that has evolved in the last two years will finally be put to test in 2022.

Organisations will align with either of the three workplace models — centralised, remote or hybrid. There are critical issues related to employee health and safety, flexibility, governance, data security, business continuity, collaboration and culture which need to be evaluated and decided.

Organisations with flexible work models will attract an unfair share of talent. 2022 is the year of reinvention for most organisations in the way they collaborate, work and create value for society.

HR Team: squeeze or expand in 2022

Human resource (HR) teams have been investing in technology, which has paid its fair share of dividends. Selfservice portals now enable employees to carry out most of their transactions at their own pace and convenience. Due to increasingly growing, efficient and reliable auxiliary eco systems, several important HR activities are being serviced outside the organisation by partners. New-age technology and
applications will continue to influence choices.

Employee experience as an imperative has gained significant importance at all the progressive workplaces for the year. Focus of leadership on talent, culture and capabilities is likely to keep HR teams’ agenda full, where more effort and ingenuity will be required to meet expectations of employees and organisations alike.

Broader strategy to boost DE&I in 2022

Business case and values case for DE&I push are equally strong. There has been a general agreement on the need to enrich diversity of all types at workplaces not limited to a few dimensions. DE&I metrics are reviewed by leaders as part of their commitment to the agenda. Strategic intent has to be complemented with targeted actions and deliberate efforts. Increase in ratio also calls for suitable enablement actions to effectively address important aspects such as marriage, maternity and mobility. Certainly, a well-articulated strategy is helpful with matching efforts across the board. Due to historical reasons and societal conditions, the DE&I mission has to continue for long periods at faster pace. Immediate transformation of all workplaces with desirable DE&I changes in their true sense seems difficult but the efforts must be continued to reach the goal.

“Large-scale organisations need to re-invent existing models to stay attractive, compared to start-ups and unicorns”

Change in leadership development programmes in 2022

Given the opportunities out there, the Indian economy will need high standards of talent across the spectrum to harness the possibilities over the next decade. Requirement is more pronounced for leadership- level talent. Beyond build-buy debate, at the aggregate level, targeted investments to grow leaders in the organisation will ease demand-supply pressures to that extent. Further, every flower must blossom to its full potential. To that extent, both individuals and organisations together have a responsibility to invest in growing people. Limitation in pursuing the important agenda is today’s priorities taking extraordinary precedence over tomorrow’s. It’s a long haul and concerted action with patience and perseverance is the only known route.

Function that will see highest salary increase in 2022

With economic recovery in tow, sentiments and confidence in the Indian economy are getting restored, and annual salary reviews are looking brighter. Improved economic indicators, particularly macros are likely to influence the outlook of organisations.

There are several functions and sectors which are likely to be in top quartile. Skewed demand-supply curve in technology, data, digital, cyber and so on will influence decisions to that extent.

New-age organisations, unicorns and startups have come up with innovative models and opportunities of wealth creation for employees. Incumbent and large-scale organisations have to reinvent their existing models to ensure that these sectors and formats do not get less competitive or attractive for new-age talent. Apart from salaries, the learning opportunities, career avenues and variety of work that people do will comprehensively decide individual choices of what they want to pursue.

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