HR’s Failure To Manage Innovation Should Be A Worry To Us All

David Perring


Of the 15 innovations we highlighted in our summer survey with HR Tech World, the lack of awareness of potentially one of the most transformative technologies should be a worry to us all.


Blockchain – the much hyped, and clearly the most mysterious of all the innovations for HR is not on the radar for a massive 84% of the survey’s respondents, with only 1% already using it and only 4% actively engaged in how they are going to apply it.


This rating places blockchain at the bottom of the league in HR’s innovations.  But through the eyes of technology experts, blockchain is potentially a revolution in HR waiting to happen.


Now, if you’re still scratching your head about what exactly blockchain is, here’s a video that might help:



Essentially, blockchain is a network that enables us to instantly transfer value, or information, within what is claimed to be an unbreakable audit trail.  In the HR world that has implications for the payment of individuals, the maintenance of qualifications, the exchange of intellectual property and the rise of completely virtualised operations, which some claim could even out uber Uber.


To be fair this is one of the most hyped and immature IT topics.   But what our research highlights again is the lack of structured planning conducted by HR around innovation.


In our research into HR Realities in Europe last year, less than 25% reported having a specific innovation plan.  And for over 40%, the only answer for innovating is to either do nothing or wait for their solution providers.


The issue is that, at best, only 1/3 of customers see their providers frequently innovating, so whilst that strategy may appear safe, it’s not the most competitive.


Now you might think does managing innovation matter?


The short answer is to innovate or die.  If you don’t evolve at this pace you are only playing catch up and you will become a sidenote in history rather than a leading player.


A process for managing HR Innovation
Fosway HR Innovation Model


So, whilst blockchain may only be on your list of “ones to watch”, not actually knowing what it is, is a bad answer, and not knowing its potential for HR is equally as dangerous. It shows you’re not effectively scanning your future horizon for where the next iceberg might hit or where the next destination should be.


At Fosway we suggest using the Innovation Model (above) to help you think through the innovations your team might want to manage, typically by holding a 6 to 12-month review of innovations in technology and thinking. This should include input from your IT team and independent thought leaders like ourselves. At least that way you are scanning the horizon and planning your future – even if, as is the case potentially with blockchain, that it’s one you should be watching rather than one you need to be piloting or adopting right now. Whereas the innovations needed to cope with GDPR is something you need to be adopting today.


What to do next…


We are about to announce the results of this year’s HR Realities Survey 2017 covering essential HR trends and HR innovation and these will be presented at HR Tech World on 24th October in Amsterdam, in the HR Analyst track.


Don’t miss it – it just could highlight the innovations you need to watch next!





The post HR’s Failure To Manage Innovation Should Be A Worry To Us All appeared first on HRN Blog.

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Published on Oct 16, 2017

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