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Panel session highlights need for HR to adapt to changing workplace

Fast Changing World, Fast Changing Technology panel session – 2014 Ceridian UK Customer Conference

The Ceridian Customer Conference saw a lively expert panel session chaired by Siân Harrington, publishing director of HR Magazine, give their views on a ‘Fast Changing World, Fast Changing Technology’.

David Woodward, chief product and innovation officer, at Ceridian UK said:

“Three key trends to look out for in 2014 – mobile, cloud and social – were picked out by Tom Standage in his talk on the future of technology. The subsequent expert panel session highlighted that the pace of technological change made it imperative for HR to keep pace not only with technological advances but also the inevitable changes taking place in the workplace.

“Technology is seeing computing power doubling every two years and next year will see better technology than all previous IT combined. According to Tom, this could see 47 per cent of all jobs automated in the next decade. The jobs least at risk are creative and senior management ones. Underlining the challenge, Tom stated the education system had a century to adapt after the industrial revolution but it now has only two decades to adapt to the technological revolution and nothing is yet planned.

“Adding spice to the melting pot is the need for HR to take account of the generational differences among an ever widening employee age population.”

Views from the panel session

Tom Standage, Digital Editor, The Economist

“The social safety net is not ready for the dramatic change in employment resulting from the pace of change in technology.”

“Technology devolves responsibility to individuals.”

“People currently tell machines but in the future machines will tell people. However, people will become more important.”

Carole Pearson, Head of HRSS and People Systems, Marks & Spencer

“When implementing change programmes you need to take into account technology changes.”

“HR skills need to change – there is a new role within shared services.”

“There needs to be an openness to learn to change at the top of organisations.”

“No one size fits all – organisations need to cater to all five generations.”

“Organisations need to be constantly listening to consumers and adapting quickly. HR will become more change agents and business orientated.”

The 2014 Ceridian Customer Conference was held on 26 February at the London Hilton, Park Lane and attended by over 600 HR, payroll and finance professionals.

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