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  • Oscar Temple

Surviving the HR Apocalypse: Overcoming 10 Critical Challenges

Updated: Mar 14

Are you feeling overwhelmed by the constant changes and challenges in the HR world? Do 

you struggle to keep up with the latest trends, regulations, and best practices? Do you 

wonder how to attract, engage, and retain the best talent in the market? If you answered yes 

to any of these questions, you are not alone. HR professionals are facing more challenges 

than ever before, and the stakes are high.

A global health crisis, layoffs, mental health issues, social unrest, and an economic downturn 

are just some of the factors that have made HR a complex and demanding field. But don't 

despair. There is hope. In this blog post, we will share with you 10 of the most critical 

challenges facing HR in 2021 and beyond, and how you can overcome them with smart 

strategies and solutions. Whether you are a seasoned HR leader or a new entrant to the 

profession, you will find valuable insights and tips to help you survive and thrive in the HR 


Rethinking the Employee Value Proposition The employee value proposition (EVP

is the set of benefits and rewards that an employer offers to its employees in 

exchange for their work and commitment. It includes tangible aspects such as pay, 

benefits, and career opportunities, as well as intangible aspects such as culture, 

purpose, and belonging. 

The EVP is crucial for attracting and retaining talent, especially in a competitive and dynamic 

market. However, many employers have failed to adapt their EVPs to the changing 

expectations and values of their employees. Employees today want more than just a 

paycheck. They want a holistic experience that encompasses career growth, skills 

development, inclusion, belonging, fairness, trust, authenticity, purpose, wellness, and more.

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to rethink their EVPs in light of the 

current and future needs of their employees. They need to conduct surveys, focus groups, 

interviews, and other methods to gather feedback from their employees and understand 

what motivates them, what frustrates them, and what they aspire to. They also need to 

benchmark their EVPs against their competitors and industry standards, and identify gaps 

and opportunities for improvement. Based on this data, HR professionals can design and 

implement a compelling EVP that aligns with their employer brand, business strategy, and 

employee preferences. They can also communicate and promote their EVP effectively 

through various channels such as SHRM  and other jobs boards.

Re-engaging the Workforce Employee engagement is the degree of emotional 

connection, commitment, and enthusiasm that employees have for their work and 

employer. Engaged employees are more productive, innovative, loyal, satisfied, 

and customer-oriented than disengaged employees. 

However, employee engagement has been declining for years, and the pandemic has excarcebated of the main reasons for this decline is the mismatch between 

employee and employer expectations regarding when, where, and how people 

should work. Many employees prefer flexible work arrangements that allow them to balance their personal and professional lives better.  

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to foster a culture of trust, transparency, 

communication, feedback, recognition, collaboration, empowerment, autonomy, 

accountability, learning, development, innovation, fun, etc. They also need to provide 

employees with clear goals, expectations, resources, support, coaching, mentoring, etc. 

Leveraging technology to enable remote work, collaboration, communication, and learning  is also essential. Regularly measuring and monitoring employee engagement levels and acting on the results is vital for improving and sustaining engagement.

Managing Remote Workforces Remote work is not a new phenomenon, but it 

has become more prevalent and popular due to the pandemic. Remote work offers many benefits for both employers and employees, such as cost savings, increased 

productivity, reduced stress, improved work-life balance, access to a wider talent 

pool, etc. However, it also poses many challenges for HR professionals, such as 

maintaining communication, collaboration, culture, performance, engagement, 

wellbeing, security, compliance, etc.  

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to promote a culture of wellness and 

wellbeing that prioritizes the physical, mental, emotional, and social health of employees. 

Flexible work options, stress reduction initiatives, recognition programs, feedback and 

support mechanisms, and access to wellness resources are crucial.

Creating a culture of Learning and Development. Learning and Development (L&D) is the process of providing employees with opportunities to acquire new knowledge, skills, competencies, behaviours, attitudes, etc. that are relevant for their current and future roles. L&D is essential for enhancing employee performance, productivity, innovation, engagement, retention, etc. However, many employers have not invested enough in L&D or have not aligned it with their business strategy and employee needs.

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to create a culture of learning and 

development that fosters a growth mindset among employees. They also need to align L&D 

objectives with business goals and employee preferences. Leveraging technology for 

personalized, adaptive, and engaging learning experiences, measuring and monitoring the 

impact of L&D, and encouraging continuous learning and knowledge sharing are vital.  

Managing Employee Mental Health and Wellbeing Employee mental health and 

wellbeing are the state of psychological and emotional wellness that affects how 

employees think, feel, act, cope, relate, perform, etc. Employee mental health and wellbeing are influenced by various factors such as personal life events, work, events, work environment, culture, workload, job demands, relationships

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to promote a culture of mental health 

and wellbeing that prioritizes the overall health of employees. Implementing initiatives such 

as mental health awareness campaigns, employee assistance programs, flexible work 

arrangements, stress management resources, work-life balance support, and creating a 

supportive and inclusive work environment are crucial. 

Enhancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are essential for creating a fair, equitable, and inclusive work environment where all employees feel valued, respected, and empowered. Many organizations struggle to enhance DEI due to biases, lack of representation, system barriers, unconscious biases, etc.

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to implement inclusive hiring practices, 

provide diversity and inclusion training, establish employee resource groups, review policies 

and practices for biases, promote diverse leadership, foster a culture of belonging and 

respect, and regularly measure and track progress towards DEI goals.  

Adapting to Changing Legal and Regulatory Landscape The legal and regulatory 

landscape is constantly evolving, and HR professionals must stay informed and 

compliant. Changes in employment laws, data privacy regulations, workplace safety standards, etc., can have a significant impact on HR practices.

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to stay updated on relevant laws and 

regulations, conduct regular compliance audits, collaborate with legal experts, provide 

training to managers and employees on legal requirements, and establish effective policies 

and procedures to ensure compliance.  

Leveraging HR Technology and Data Analytics HR technology and data analytics have revolutionized HR processed and decision-making. However, many HR professionals struggle to leverage these tools effectively.

To overcome this challenge, HR professionals need to invest in modern HR technology that 

streamlines processes, automates administrative tasks, and provides real-time insights. 

They also need to build data analytics capabilities to make data-driven decisions, measure 

HR metrics, identify trends, and optimize HR strategies. Integrating HR technology with 

other business systems, ensuring data privacy and security, and providing training to HR staff on using technology and analytics are critical steps. 


The HR world is undergoing significant changes, and HR professionals face numerous 

challenges. However, by understanding and addressing these challenges head-on, HR 

professionals can not only survive but thrive in the HR apocalypse.  



Rethinking the employee value proposition, re-engaging the workforce, managing remote workforces, upskilling employees, managing employee burnout, creating a culture of learning and development, promoting employee mental health and wellbeing, enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, adapting to the changing legal and regulatory landscape, and leveraging HR technology and data analytics are key strategies for HR professionals to overcome these challenges successfully. By embracing these strategies, HR professionals can play a crucial role in shaping the future of work and creating a positive and impactful employee experience.


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