Top 4 HR Challenges Set To Define Human Resources In 2019

Top 4 HR Challenges Set To Define Human Resources In 2019

Another year over and a new one has just begun. But while HR personnel everywhere enjoyed their hard-earned break around over the Christmas period, they are now focused on tackling the many HR challenges that they are set to face in 2019.

We have put together a short breakdown of the 4 most pressing concerns for HR departments in the coming year and while there are certainly other issues on HR managers’ minds, these 4 are set to define the way HR approach the next 12 months.

So, here you go. The top 4 HR challenges In 2019!


    1. Employee Engagement

It’s a recurring theme in Human Resources but with every new year comes new ways in which employee engagement are both threatened and enhanced. It’s important that HR keeps up with emerging trends and growing expectations.

According to a study by Cascade HR, some 40% of more than 400 HR professionals surveyed believed Engagement would be their biggest challenge in 2019. Other concerns were Recruitment (37%) and Retention (36%) with Absence Management (29%) and Employee Wellbeing (22%).

Of course, here at AnnualLeave, we know at first hand the challenges that these aspects pose, and with our employee leave management software we have helped to make the headaches go away.

Employee Engagement, however, involves some out-of-the-box thinking that keeps your teams sharp, challenged and enthused. If the statistics are to be believed, get it right and 2019 is likely to be a very good year.


    1. Automation – But Keeping It Human

Automation has been growing in importance in recent years, and it shows no signs to waning in 2019. In fact, according to Cascade’s survey, 46% of respondents described automation as “imperative” to their efforts to make their HR departments more effective and more efficient in 2019; a mere 2% said they didn’t think automation was necessary.

Of course, adopting technology is a good thing, and a host of apps are being used every day. But with that comes a new challenge – achieving HR automation without losing the human touch.

So, HR teams will have to learn how to use AI (or artificial intelligence) without undermining Employee Engagement efforts. It’s about understanding how to benefit from automation, predictive analytics and workforce planning while also keeping employees feeling valued and engaged. And there are those who can see how AI actually enables the human touch.


    1. GDPR – The Challenge Continues

From 2016 to the day it came into effect, GDPR was an ominous nightmare keeping HR professionals awake at night. We know not everyone has yet achieved full compliance, but even if your company has, retaining compliance remains a key challenge through 2019.

Last year (according to Cascade), GDPR was the joint-third most important concern amongst HR professionals at 35% (sharing that place with Employee Retention), and some 66% described the legislative overhaul required to comply as “problematic, yet manageable”. But efforts to maintain that compliance are now the priority, and it will be HR managers tasked with the chore of ensuring the company does, and avoids the costly fines.


    1. Master Workforce Planning

Indications suggest the number of freelancers and contract workers is going to continue to grow. In fact, according to some experts in the US, as many as 50% of the workforce there is expected to be either temporary, contract or freelance by the year 2020.

In the UK, the number of freelancers is about 2 million, and with the newest workforce arrivals expecting flexible working schedules that complement their lifestyle, the number is expected to increase.  So, preparing for arrivals, departures and general staffing fluctuations is set to become critical, making workforce planning more vital than ever before.

About the Author

AnnualLeave is a leading employee leave management tool on the market, lifting the HR headache by cutting request processing times, monitoring leave trends, and maintaining company compliance all with one user-friendly, affordable self-service app. For more information you can get in touch with one of our team via our online form or email at

Comments are closed.