DISHA 2017: Day 3: Sophos – “Changing Competencies required for digital age” – Ms. Annapurna A, Director HR, Inspirage

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On 31st August 2017 Ms. Annapurna began her address by asking the audience about their own perceptions about the future of HR. She was very optimistic about the future of HR and explained that the field of HRM doesn’t limit itself to traditional roles of recruitment, retention, training etc. She spoke about the behavioral aspect of HR and threw light on Cognitive HR and Psychometrics.

Ms. Annapurna them moved on to the future trends and challenges to organizations. In her opinion, “as long as we are alive we are changing”. Using video presentations she dwelled into the five trends which are responsible for forcing companies to bring in innovation, rapidly change every aspect of their business and rethink their existing strategies. These trends are Mobilization, Mobility, Millennials, New Behaviors and Technology. She cited examples of technologies like Internet of Things, Big Data and the plethora of social media channels for being the drivers of change within businesses.

The next part of Ms. Annapurna address was on the future outlook of jobs where she elucidated about the impact of technology on hiring. Though the economy is in good shape, jobs are decreasing as algorithms are making analysts redundant. The picture is very grim for jobs in the lower rung of the organizations though the silver lining is that there will be new high skilled jobs in the distance future as a consequence of the innovation happening in the present. There would always be a demand for the high skilled employees as India stands 2nd in the world after Japan in the list of countries facing skill shortages.

Further, Ms. Annapurna took a deep dive into the world of Predictive Analytics explaining its importance to the field of HR. Predictive Analytics are the new tools of the business world. She then briefly touched upon technologies such as Biometrics, Neural Networks, Machine Learning, Gesture and Facial Recognition, Mini bots, Video Analytics and Natural Language Processing. In her opinion, these skills are a must for the survival of the current businesses. The proof of it is how technology is transcending generations. Both the old and the new are now embracing it. But the real question here is the relevance of HR in the world of Analytics. Ms. Annapurna explains that algorithms only perform routine work and should only be used as a compliment to the human mind. There is nothing which replaces human mind. This is where HR comes in. Humans must leverage the technology for their own advantage making them indispensable to their organizations. Digital transformation has greater value at stake for society than businesses themselves.

The last part of Ms. Annapurna’s lecture focused on millennials and their significance to the sustainability of businesses across the world. She said that understanding millennials isn’t just about employing them. While marketing to the millennials companies should keep in mind their desire for customization, recognition, branding and experience. As millennials move into leadership roles they are going to be making business buying decisions, so it’s important for both B2B and B2C companies to understand how to market to this generation. She also emphasized on the importance of rich content on businesses and how content analysis is in much demand from organizations. Finally she answered a few questions from the audience concluding what has been a very engrossing lecture

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