HR in 90 Seconds - January 2019

Posted in : Supplementary Articles NI on 15 January 2019
Legal Island
Legal Island
Issues covered:

In this month’s ‘HR in 90 seconds…’ we consider the HR trends coming your way in 2019 and the skills that you might need to handle them. Also we look at the LinkedIn top 10 most viewed jobs of 2018.

HR trends coming to your office in 2019

HR Review bring us Perkbox predictions on the trends that they think as most likely to be the key issues in 2019. They predict that we may face issues such as:

  1. A battle against presenteeism at work;
  2. Workplaces having to recognise the importance of being more environmentally friendly; and
  3. Establishing a culture of psychological safety will also become key.

In the UK, CIPD reports that 86 percent of employees have observed presenteeism in their organisation in the last twelve months. Alongside absenteeism, this costs the UK economy an estimated £77bn/year. With reduced productivity and spreading of illnesses to others in the office being some of the most obvious effects, an effort to change attitudes will be required this year to help tackle this issue.

Attempts have already been made with many organisations introducing policies such as flexible working and unlimited holiday, to help improve work life balance, but these alone aren’t enough. Investing heavily in mental health initiatives such as EAPs, mental health first aiders, counselling and online GPs for staff will be a priority in 2019, as will be the need to set an example to employees, through encouraging them to seek help when needed.

Having seen the war on plastic hotting up significantly this last year, they also predict the rise of eco-workplaces turning mainstream in 2019. 2018 saw companies such as Wetherspoons and All Bar One banning plastic straws, while supermarkets like Iceland pledged to be plastic free by 2023. It is anticipated that ‘green thinking’ will play a key part in company culture. Expect initiatives such as a ‘Bring Your Own Reusable Bottle (BYORB)’, green electricity and paperless offices becoming the new norm. Speaking of environmental friendliness, have to seen Iceland’s banned Rang-tan ad?

Tackling the epidemic that is imposter syndrome will also be a big HR trend in 2019 as employers realise that psychological safety can become a huge driver for growth. Imposter syndrome is estimated to have affected 62 per cent of UK employees in 2018, it’s an issue worth its weight. Perhaps 2019 will see a movement similar to #MeToo as it gains public awareness and enforcement.

The Skills Companies Need Most in 2019 – And How to Learn Them

Paul Petrone, Editor of LinkedIn learning has analysed what soft skills companies might be looking for most in 2019.  Paul identifies the rise of AI making soft skills increasingly important, as they are precisely the type of skills robots can’t automate. He narrows it down to 5 and tells us in one sentence why it matters:

  1. Creativity - While robots are great at optimizing old ideas, organizations most need creative employees who can conceive the solutions of tomorrow.
  2. Persuasion - Having a great product, a great platform or a great concept is one thing, but the key is persuading people to buy into it.
  3. Collaboration - As projects grow increasingly more complex and global in the age of AI, effective collaboration only grows more important.
  4. Adaptability - An adaptable mind is an essential tool for navigating today’s ever-changing world, as yesterday’s solutions won’t solve tomorrow’s problems.
  5. Time Management - A timeless skill, mastering time management today will serve you the rest of your career.

If you have some more time to read the article Paul takes the article further to look at the ‘Hard Skills Companies Need Most in 2019’.

Other items of interest:

Is 2019 the year to focus on workplace culture?

LinkedIn, with over 26 million members in the UK, has revealed the most-viewed jobs of 2018. Between them, these top 25 jobs received over 900K views on LinkedIn.

In order of ranking, the top 10 most-viewed jobs of 2018 are…

  1. Management Consultant at The Boston Consulting Group (BCG)
  2. Communications Assistant at The Royal Household
  3. Data Scientist at Oracle
  4. Java Developer at Barclays
  5. Junior/Graduate Mechanical Design Engineer at Robinson Associates (Consulting Engineers) Ltd
  6. Architect at Foster + Partners
  7. Graduate business development at GQR Global Markets
  8. Private Secretary to HRH The Princess Royal at The Royal Household
  9. MTV Travel Content Producer at MTV
  10. Jo Malone Global Social Media Trainee at The Estée Lauder Companies Inc.

With over 70,000 views, the most-viewed job is for a role at Boston Consulting Group. The organisation is frequently featured in “best places to work” lists, and was ranked at number ten in LinkedIn’s Top Companies 2018, which could reflect the importance that jobseekers are placing on workplace culture.

Keeping this in mind is it, therefore, important to give consideration to the engagement of your workforce? To create an engaged organization, you need the energy of employees communicating, collaborating, building trust, and promoting shared values.

When those things are missing, the results can be tragic. For a simple reminder of the key things, view this simple infographic on what an engaged organisation looks like from Decision Wise to see the difference between engaged and disengaged organizations.

The answers to 41 employment law questions asked by your peers

Your peers submitted 41 employment-related questions that were answered in the First Tuesday Q&A feature by Chris Fullerton from Arthur Cox solicitors (in addition to the hundreds of questions we answered in previous years).  Here is a selection of the most complex, unusual and interesting ones from 2018.

10 Cases for 2019

With the turning of the new year Eversheds Sutherland highlight some key cases for HR practitioners to watch out for in 2019. This includes a variety of cases from the EAT, CA, NICA, SC and ECtHR.


This article is correct at 15/01/2019

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Legal Island
Legal Island

The main content of this article was provided by Legal Island. Contact telephone number is 028 9446 3888 / 01 401 3874 or email

View all articles by Legal Island