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The Future of: CPD For HR Professionals

9 in 10 HR professionals stated in Sympa’s Future of Work survey in 2021 that they feel their role’s changed in some ways during the pandemic.

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If you’re a CPD provider for HR professionals, you therefore need to take into account how the role’s changing. This’ll help make your 2022 CPD events programme most suitable. Read below to investigate the future of CPD for HR professionals.

An employee works from home. Their laptop shows graphs and they have a coffee cup next to it.

Hybrid Working Disputes

In the aforementioned Sympa survey, 89.9% of respondents stated that they believe that the future of work is hybrid. Employees will get to decide when they work. and today’s employees are demanding (or at least expecting) to be allowed to choose where they work. Therefore, we’re currently in an era where many people don’t want to be back in the office and return to unsatisfactory work-life balances. As Sympa states, this commotion will be hard to get people through, and HR professionals need to be trained to adapt to this and guide company employees. HR departments deal with employee issues and disputes. Due to this, they can expect to deal with flexible working demands and mediate negotiations about hybrid workings, potentially with employers who want to stop their people working from home.

Communication in HR

HR professionals must ensure effective staff communication and welfare. Therefore, during the pandemic, organisations have had to improve their internal communications strategies. They’ve had to communicate effectively to double-check on their employees’ welfare and ensure they can sufficiently work from home.

This has mostly been successful. 46.15% of respondents told Sympa that the quality of internal communications have improved during this time, and only 12.31% stated that it’s deteriorated. Therefore, the pandemic and remote working have actually potentially improved workplace communications, and HR professionals have thrived at adapting their practices to these new conditions. This suggests that CPD for HR professionals is highly effective and should continue its current course.

It’s worth noting that 41.54% of respondents stated that internal communications quality and processes have remained the same – CPD providers for HR professionals should therefore not become complacent in what they offer, and there’s still work to be done regarding communications CPD.

A woman sits at a desk in an open office

Mental Health in CPD HR

It’s been reported by many publications that the pandemic has caused a higher risk of burnout in the workforce, due to increased working hours and emotional strains. Gallup’s 2020 report found that a staggering 76% of employees have experienced job burnout. Therefore, it’s never been more critical to keep an eye on the happiness and wellbeing of employees. If HR don’t help the workers function, the business itself can’t keep its head above water. Therefore, HR teams need to be taught how to demonstrate an open-minded approach that shows awareness of what employees are mentally and emotionally going through.

It’s also important that HR professionals are trained in the emotional intelligence to understand what kinds of perks will actually benefit their colleagues’ mental health. If employees feel that they’re given too much work to do at home, a pizza lunch won’t be what solves the problem. They might prefer to discuss more flexible working hours. Whereas employees feeling lonely due to self-isolation might actually appreciate pizza lunches. This is a simple example, but it goes to show that HR professionals are having to exercise a less generalised approach, and think about the actual people they’re tasked with helping. This correlates with Sympa’s statement that there’s a trend to put people back at the centre of the attention.

Especially because if employees don’t feel fulfilled at work, and the HR department aren’t assuring them of the positives of staying in their roles, employees will leave. The current trend is that millennials are choosing to work for companies that have a clear message and wish to make the world a better place. And they have the power to leave if their current role doesn’t fit their standards. Hence, 60% of respondents to the Challenges Facing HR Over the Next 10 Years survey stated that retaining and rewarding the best employees is the top challenge. Happier employees, according to a report from the University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School, are also 13% more productive and stay longer at origanisations.

So, CPD in HR needs to train learners to understand this, and know how to not only keep employees basically happy, but effectively keep a hold of them.

Data in CPD for HR Professionals

The findings to the Future of Work Survey 2021 strongly suggest an expectation that HR will become more data-driven in the next few years. 35.7% of respondents view their decision-making as highly data-driven, and 46.4% put people analytics in high regard.

This isn’t a surprise; our articles about the future of CPD in other professions (e.g. marketing, architecture, law) also suggest that data and technology are becoming more important in CPD. Professionals need to learn how to use software to analyse quantitative information, and not simply adopt a qualitative or descriptive approach. So, more technical training is likely to be implemented and required.

CPD For HR Professionals: Should it Be More Enjoyable?

Above, we discussed the importance of HR teams keeping employees happy. Well, the same should be true for the HR teams themselves.

The CPD Certification Service states that relevant CPD courses are sometimes difficult to find, especially with other obligations that learners might have. This is especially true today, with the end of working from home meaning that many people suddenly don’t have the same work-life balance that allows them to get non-work-related tasks done on workdays, and they have to go back to having less time in a non-flexible day. Hence, the CPD Certification Service emphasises that CPD for HR professionals should encourage learners to actually engage with learners and feel more fulfilled doing it, rather than it feeling like an extra obligation that they don’t have time for.

Just like any other employees, HR professionals need to be trained and developed in a way that they enjoy, which motivates them to not see work as a burden that they wish to exercise their power to leave.

4 HR workers gather around a laptop in a modern office


CPD for HR professionals focuses on ensuring that HR professionals can carry out recruitment and staff training, workplace welfare and safety, communication, and policies.

Today, professionals in this area must adapt to new ways of working, and new types of workplace disputes. Its CPD is also expected to be more data-based than it’s been in the past.

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