Four Trends and Opportunities

Between sessions at the HR Technology® Conference, Josh Bersin, CEO of Bersin & Associates in Oakland,Calif., shared his take on four of the more important trends he sees happening in HR technology today.

First on his list is the migration to mobile devices. Why does this matter? “By the middle of this decade,” Bersin says, “the number of people with mobile devices will be 10 Xs more than those with computers.”

Not surprisingly, Bersin explains, talent-management-software vendors have recognized the opportunity, with suppliers such as Kronos, Peoplefluent, Cornerstone and Workday releasing first generation mobile apps.

Today, many of the features found on “traditional” iPad apps, such as pinching, swiping and videos, are finding their way onto some of the HR offerings.

Second on Bersin’s list is the emergence of tools for mining and analyzing data. Companies are looking to vendors for tools that enable them to interpret the data, Bersin says.

Bersin cites a recent McKinsey report that estimates there’s a shortage of 180,000 workers who have the right skills to analyze data in business. “Anyone who knows analytics can get a job today,” he says.

Third is the “consumerization” of the tools. Ease of use is being taken to a new level, thanks to companies such as Facebook and Apple, he says.

Finally, Bersin believes HR system providers such as Oracle, SAP, Workday and Lawson (which now have talent-management capabilities) are starting to have an affect on the growth rate of talent-management-suite vendors.