HR Trends for 2021

Tue | 23.02.2021

Human Resources

At the end of 2020, CNA International surveyed leaders and human resources representatives about HR trends in 2021.

Please find below some main conclusions:

  1. Employees WELLBEING is a priority
  2. Traditional office replaced by emerging HYBRID office
  3. MODERN BENEFITS used to boost retention
  4. Focus on RESKILLING and UPSKILLING employees
  5. HR Department to become digital, agile and data savvy
  6. Accelerating the shift to RE-ARCHITECTING work and work transformation
  8. VIRTUAL RECRUITING and HIRING is on the rise
  9. HR department will slowly become a PEOPLE CENTRIC department
  10. Relationship employer - employee for the FIRST time in equilibrium


As 2020 was a significant source of stress and the work moved home, ending the work - life balance, employees need to be surrounded by a well being culture, environment, measures in order to feel cared for.

The hybrid office will emerge, as a combination of traditional office and remote work from home, a leant between the headquarter and its satellites which can be placed anywhere, at any time.

When it comes to benefits, one size fits all it’s no longer an option. Employees are looking for individualized schedules, benefits and responsibilities. Mental and emotional health benefits are a must have, rather than a nice to have.

Roles will be expanded to whatever responsibilities and tasks are needed. Reconversion, reskilling and upskilling trainings and courses will be offered.

HR technology become a must have. Online, virtual HR activities will be carried on more and more frequently. HR departments will become more complex and efficient. More and more HR functions will be outsourced to experts.

The employment experience and the organizational cultures will empower the employees to make their own choices.  There will be a major workplace transformation.

Retention and development of internal talent will be very important to organizations success. Career development via remote mobility will be one of the new ways of engaging employees.

Virtual recruiting and onboarding expand the geographical range of talent once can source. Recruiters should become experts at virtual collaboration and digital communication.

The focus of HR will be empathetic leadership - leading with empathy, kindness and compassion, encouraging inclusive culture - managing inclusion, equity, diversity. Giving and receiving assertive feedback. Encouraging feedforwarding.

For the first time in many years the labor market is stabilizing. Both the employers and the employees realize they both need each other to be successful.

When we look into the future of work, we know this much: it will never look like it did in the pre-COVID-19 world. The HR world is in a continuous transformation. The ones adapting, adapting fast, will be the ones having the advantage.


CNA International remains your trusted HR Business Partner ready to offer you customized HR solutions.


This article was provided by our HR Partner, CNA International Executive Search Romania.

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