The Future of HR

Natalé Mastoroudes 
Global Head of HR 

Although the use of HR Information Systems (HRIS) began in the early 90s, the digital transformation of HR was only really felt in the mid-2000s. That is when I assumed my first role as an HR Consultant following my studies. As such, I belong to the first generation of HR professionals that cannot imagine doing this job without the use of an employee database, job boards, social media and in general without the use of technology in all aspects of the employee lifecycle.

Almost 13 years ago, when I returned to Cyprus, HR was considered a luxury and only large organisations had the means and resources to maintain specialist HR departments. Basic HR duties were handled by office administrators with no relevant education or expertise. 

But I’ve observed a major change in the last 10 years – brought on primarily by large multinationals opening offices in Cyprus and hiring locals in the field of HR. Local HR professionals were exposed to large, multifunctional HR departments, worked with new technologies and had the opportunity to collaborate and learn from world-class professionals in the field. 

Covid was a catalyst in the further evolution of HR. Instant communication through online apps was indispensable in managing logistics and our critical response to the pandemic and ever-changing legislation. Agility became key and the HR community rose to the occasion. When the pandemic ended, many employees refused to return to the office and HR professionals were once again pivotal in this transition towards a digital workplace.

And HR’s digital transformation continues. We already see the use of AI in HR – resumé screening software, the use of ChatGPT in daily processes and specialised HR chat bots. In the next 5 years they will be as common in our profession as employee databases are now. I also feel that there will be a total gamification of Recruitment, Learning & Development, and even Employee Services – allowing for greater customization in the manner of alternate endings that we see in certain Netflix shows today. We’ll see a lapse in traditional CVs and a greater use of video applications and online testing. HR employee services will be largely automated, allowing HR professionals to add value where machines can’t – by lending their expertise as strategic partners and consultants to businesses, employing HR Data Analytics in their discussions with Management.

Importantly, the Gig Economy trend will grow further. More businesses will seek to have a remote, flexible workforce, and more employees will fall in love with the digital nomad lifestyle. We will see an increase in consultancy agreements over employment contracts, and in flexible working conditions. The day-to-day (including compensation structures!) will be largely results-based, as opposed to the 9-to-5 structure that has been embraced for the last 100yrs. All in all, we are in for an excitingly different world of HR. And HR Professionals will once again need to rise up to meet constantly evolving business needs. But ultimately, this is what makes this job so much fun!

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