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5 Must-Have Essential Skills for HR Digital Leaders

5 Must-Have Essential Skills for HR Digital Leaders

It’s no secret that technology is changing the way we work and how fast we work. That being said, adapting to change has never been easy. How do you cope with the ever changing technological world? Particularly as a human resource (HR) professional?

HR professionals are not immune to the great shift that has taken place in the workplace. In fact, HR professionals play a strategic role in the digitalisation of their organisation. Here are the 5 must-have essential skills for HR professionals to keep up with the phenomenon of digitalisation.

1) Technology Aptitude

You can’t turn your back on digitisation as it has radically changed our lives, societies and impacted our daily workplace. We spend hours every day, interacting with digital input from all form of computers and mobile devices. With technology, we communicate more in real-time than ever before and are constantly influenced by recommendations, opinions and suggestions driven by analytics and behavioural economics.

The digital life requires HR professional to rethink their methods and to constantly learn new technologies in order to roll out the most efficient strategies and solutions according to the ever-changing business environment. Learn to familiarise with useful online tools such as Relode, a platform that uses the virtual powers of technology and crowdsourcing that will help you complete recruiting tasks easily, or Textio, an advanced machine tool that helps recruiters and small businesses optimise their job ads, using better words.

2) Mastering Social Media

In today’s digital world, social media is where your target candidates ‘hang out’. According to latest data released by We Are Social, Singapore has the second highest social media penetration in ASEAN at 67% of the population, followed by Malaysia at 59%, Thailand at 58%, the Philippines at 47%, Vietnam at 40% and Indonesia at 31%. Hong Kong also has one of the highest rate of social media penetration, at 64% of the total population.

Smart HR professionals know how to use social media to build a two-way communication and foster positive relationships, respect and trust with their target candidates. This allows them to attract top talents before actually posting about a job opening. It is therefore crucial for HR professionals to be competent in using social media and to utilise it as a platform for engagement, rather than as a push marketing tool.

3) Analytics & Data-Driven Decision Making

Ready or not, as a HR professional, you need to boost up your analytical skill. Similarly to how large data has revolutionised the way marketing and finance works, analytics will also transform HR. Some of the tools available out there are PwC’s Analytic Apps (which helps to accelerate the path to insights by integrating big data) and IBM’s Kenexa HR analytics (which uses cognitive analytics to understand and to continue learning the language of HR).

Traditionally, HR professionals are good at collecting data. But you can have all the data in the world and still not know how to use it. The key is to learn how to become data interpreters. A HR professional who possess good data interpretation is able to spot trends based on the data and plan a solution to some critical questions. For example, which kind of talent are most likely to become successful leaders? How long does it take for new employees to be productive?

4) Marketing Skills

An outstanding brand usually draws the attention of an outstanding talent, therefore it is important for an organisation to commit time and resources to build a strong brand. HR professionals need to master these marketing techniques to promote the company brand by learning how to maintain active company websites or online profiles, publish digital media or grasp skills in the latest marketing software to create effective marketing campaigns.

In addition, Asia’s mobile landscape has transformed the way marketing is done. Five of the top ten countries with the highest smartphone penetration rate in the world are located in Asia. With that, HR professionals must learn to embrace mobile marketing skills and use it to reach out to larger talent pool of candidates via mobile.

5) Lead Intelligent Digital Processes

HR can no longer assume that the digitalisation of their organisation lies only in the domains of IT departments. For a smarter execution of current HR-related work processes, HR professionals must create alternative digital processes. There are many digital technologies today that can play an important role in creating such alternative and intelligent digital processes.

For example, pick up crowdsourcing skills as it offers alternative ways to source for labour, be trained in using real-time video conferencing to better recruit candidates regionally or prepare virtual career fairs, workspaces and other engaging virtual platforms to allow candidates or employees to interact more efficiently.

The digital era forces us to rethink HR from top to bottom: from the moment we design our job ads, to the process of talent recruitment, all the way to retention and development of the employees and the sustainability of the whole organisation. HR professionals must learn to stay active, progressive and be up to date with the latest technology as the future of HR depends on how we manage all these changes.

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