Human Resources Technology Trends to Know in 2018 in the Middle East
By Talal Bayaa
Technology is changing the Middle East. New investment, strategies, and technology products are influencing a variety of the sectors – technology like blockchain and AI are entering businesses across the region and taking it by storm.
One industry that’s currently going through a huge technological upheaval is Human Resources (HR). So, what are the big technology trends HR specialists and Middle Eastern businesses need to know in 2018?
Here are the trends experts are looking out for:
AI is entering the HR industry in terms of decision-making, work processes, and customer experience. HR systems are not just for collecting data, as the analysis and management of this data are becoming more intelligent. AI systems are used to learn, adapt and act autonomously.
For HR in the Middle East, the AI systems will be deeply integrated into talent acquisition. The cognitive technologies can provide businesses with predictive algorithms and automated processes that create more transparent and efficient hiring systems. HR experts can use the information to improve applicant numbers, influencing the company culture and enhancing the candidate experience.
The world is turning into blockchain technology and not just in terms of the focus on technologies like Bitcoin. The technology is making an impact on different sectors and innovation is heating up – including many Middle Eastern companies entering the market with their innovative products.
Blockchain offers HR professionals and businesses a decentralized and secure ledger, allowing the participation in information validation. The technology removes the need for a middleman and therefore, answers to many of the HR challenges companies are faced with. Blockchain technologies are already present in the HR practices of payroll management, certification, seed funding and digital process management. However, the blockchain trend is also a cause for concern for many experts and businesses must be careful in the kind of approach they adapt to it. It’s important to start small and to properly test and vet the technologies before full-scale adaptation.
The industry will also see a rise in conversational platforms. In Gartner’s Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2018 research, conversational platforms were mentioned as one of the key trends to impact the world. This will also show up in the HR sector in the Middle East.
Because of the rise of analytics tools like AI systems, conversational platforms have become better equipped to handling actual business problems. HR will provide a great platform for testing the usefulness – the tools can ‘talk’ to employees and be part of processes such as interviewing candidates and helping with the onboarding process. While many platforms are still rather straightforward, complexity will develop because of early adaptation.
Businesses are also increasingly engaged in cloud technologies. In the Middle East, many startups are innovating software solutions that are solely in the cloud – the benefits are obvious in terms of cutting costs and improving security.
One of the big reasons cloud solutions are getting so much attention within the HR sector is down to the decentralization of information. Cloud solutions offer more transparency and opportunities for two-way communication. The modern employee is looking for ways to be part of the HR process and with a cloud solution, this is becoming more possible.
Talal Bayaa, CEO and Co-Founder of Bayzat, has said how the fact their startup has attracted a lot of investor attention is due to the company’s approach to solving HR challenges. The Bayzat tools rely on cloud technology and thrive to improve and simplify this communication between the employer and the employee.
Finally, a technology that allows HR departments to be agiler is going to be at the core of the industry. The digitalization of organizations has meant that businesses must be able to adjust to changes much quicker. Things like rapid learning and adaptation are central to business success and the HR is at the core of this dilemma. According to Jeff Gothelf, organizational coach and executive coach, “When HR is included and buys into the values of organizational agility, the promise of increased productivity, efficiency, and higher-quality products and services can be fully realized” – this is clearly becoming an approach successful startups understand.
Therefore, the industry is looking for agile systems that make it easier to adapt to changes. This means simplifying organizational processes and creating stronger accountability within the organization. Traditional chains of command are breaking down within digital companies and the HR will pay a big role in ensuring the organization remains agile.
The year of Innovation For Middle Eastern HR
Middle East’s HR industry is getting a lot of positive attention. This isn’t a surprise, as the industry has always been open to technology – if it wants to continue its rise to be the market leader, the sector will have to continue embracing technology and use it to overcome the HR challenges within the region. Focusing on these above HR trends in 2018 is a good way to start.