Cleavon Emilio-Luis has more than 15 years of international experience in the areas of Human Resources and Health and Safety in the Construction and Mining sector. In addition, he has a deep interest in design thinking, business process management and digital transformation. At the beginning of his career, Cleavon launched his first entrepreneurial venture; that experience led him to understand the value that business mentoring and professional management advice can have on the success and sustainability of new ventures. 

What are some of the major challenges that are prevailing in the market lately?

I think that following the pandemic, employees' expectations have shifted. The pandemic has certainly fast-tracked the adoption of working remotely by employers. As we recover from the pandemic's devastating effects, businesses are preparing to redeploy staff to real workplaces. However, daily commuting in this post-pandemic era won't be as straightforward as before.  

Additionally, being a part of the great resignation, we have seen many employees across industries resigning that never happened before. This led us to a talent shortage in the industry. I think there's a strain in terms of finding good talent, and with increased demand for talent, that also puts employees in the driver's seat when it comes to choosing the right candidate. As a result, I believe we should concentrate on what we can contribute and how to work as HR to help other parts of the company find solutions to these problems.

We should develop a comprehensive employer brand that puts the employee at the center and offers competitive pay, but picture how that employee will advance within the organization with wise leadership.”

What are the current trends that you've seen emerging lately? 

I think that everyone uses technology at work, particularly when working remotely. People use collaborative tools like Zoom Meetings and Teams. Both companies and employees now have more options thanks to these technologies. Additionally, one can expand their candidate pool with such an opportunity rather than being a detriment.

Another big trend is that employees are seeking other opportunities where an employer can increase inflation. So, making your work environment and the culture that can attract and retain employees becomes more challenging. It's hard to keep up with that while maintaining internal equity. But, their demands in terms of salary are higher than the employees that have a long tenure in the company. So, I realize that they are underpaid, and they go and look for new opportunities elsewhere, and it's just a big cycle.

Could you provide an example of any project initiative on which you have worked and successfully used one of these trends?

We are putting a lot of effort into metrics, analytics, and data delivery to our management for all areas, particularly the HR services. It enables us to use some instruments, such as surveys and polygraph tests, to make better judgments and evaluate our staff. For instance, we use updated exit surveys to learn why employees leave their jobs. Then, we conduct engagement surveys to identify and fix their problems.

As a result, we are always on the lookout for methods to integrate new programs, procedures, and ways to measure and show that information in a way that our managers can understand and use to make choices.

How do you anticipate this area will develop over the next few years?

I believe it's going to be a bidding war for talent. As we continue to see the economy booming, employers will bid more vigorously for workers—which mean that labor demand is increasing quickly. As a result, businesses must increase the talent pool within their organizations to remain competitive. With that, employees will demand more to work for a company in terms of compensation, benefits, and other perks. As a result, to work with employees and encourage them to stay longer, we must imagine their future path and advancement.

What one piece of advice would you provide to aspiring professionals in this field?

I would say that the most crucial element is leadership. Employees may leave an organization if there is a toxic work environment. In many cases, employees claim to quit their managers, not the company, and the second thing comes with salaries and benefits.

We should develop a comprehensive employer brand that puts the employee at the center and offers competitive pay, but picture how that employee will advance within the organization with wise leadership. This will be a success in this current environment where we're in a war for talent.