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Future of work narratives can feel about as reliable as a used printer.

But this particular moment in the history of the workforce is perhaps more uncertain than any we’ve previously lived through. The direction that leaders move in when it comes to adopting new skills, work models, and new technologies will play a major part in what work looks like in the near and long term.

Against a backdrop of cautious excitement, our 2024 Workplace Trends Report details the concerns, hopes and predictions of HR leaders from a variety of industries. Combined with expert insight from leading thinkers and practitioners in the world of HR and people operations, the report lays out how leaders are preparing their organizations for the next 10 years.

HR predictions for the next wave of workplace evolutions.

Who And What We Asked

We surveyed and interviewed over 200 HR professionals from across industries and geographies. Of the industries represented, the three most common were:

  • Software and IT
  • Government, public, and nonprofit
  • Healthcare, pharma, and medical.

The vast majority (93%) of respondents come from companies with less than 5,000 employees and more than half of them can boast over a decade of experience in people ops and HR.

We surveyed and interviewed over 200 HR professionals. These are the respondents based on location.
The majority of the respondents (39%) were based in the United States followed by Canada (8.5%) and the UK (8%).

The questions they were asked to answer regarding the world of work were reasonably simple. We wanted to know:

  • What concerns you most in the coming year?
  • What workplace trends do you feel the most positive about?
  • What do you think the leading trends in human resources will be this year?
  • What do you think will cause the biggest disruption to the workforce over the next ten years?

To get answers to these questions, we identified a mix of leaders at major companies, startups, consultancies and even academia to share their insights and help us understand what they think is going to shape the future of the workplace.

  • Bill Huffaker, Vice President of Talent Management at Workday
  • Tina Wang, Divisional Vice President of HR at ADP
  • Mary Alice Vuicic, Chief People Officer at Thomson Reuters
  • Alex Link, Lead Director, L&D, at CVS Health
  • Benedikt Dischinger, Vice President of Finance, People and Culture at DocuWare
  • Amanda Halle, Founder & CEO of Mindful Growth Partners
  • Weronika Niemcyzk-Savage, Chief People & Culture Officer, Cyncly
  • Victoria Myers, Global Head of Talent Management, Amdocs
  • Annette Vandamas, Director, People Partner, ABBYY
  • Felicia Shakiba, Fractional CPO, CPO Playbook
  • Robert Bird, professor of Business Law at the University of Connecticut

Key Insights

"While I don't think we should ever remove human judgment in that process, I’d love for us to lean more into HR technology and smartly use it to pick up some of these signals that, historically, we have relied upon leaders alone to judge."

Bill Huffaker
Vice President of Talent Management at Workday

"AI is going to be the fastest technological transformation we’ve seen in our lifetime. So change management to help people understand how they need to adapt, how they develop the skills and the way that companies are organized so that org structure is more dynamic."

Mary Alice Vuicic
Chief People Officer at Thomson Reuters

1. The Shifting Talent Market

There have been some significant shifts in the talent landscape over the last year.

While retention is still (and maybe always will be) the top concern for many HR leaders, some have dubbed this shift as “the great stay”, a reference to an era of what seems like talent stability after the years of the “great resignation.”

But, of course, there’s a catch!

Now that you’re keeping this talent, the next question becomes “What are you doing with it?” and “How do we keep people engaged?”.

What Concerns HR Leaders in 2024? Talent retention, impact of AI and automation, skills shortage, talent market volatility, return to office, aging workforce, and changing labor laws.

Searching for an answer to this question couldn’t come at a more confusing time as AI becomes not just a tool, but a member of your workforce.

The great promise of AI is that it will free your people from time-sucking admin tasks and low-level creative projects to focus on more strategic aims.

This shift, however, is not something that comes naturally to the workforce, nor is it something that will produce results immediately as people have to be trained on how to implement the technology.

Instead, it will take leadership willing to patiently guide people through a process of rethinking the nature of work and providing them with the skills to remain relevant in the new era.

“We’re in a bit of a paradox where it’s like you talk to talent who’s looking for a job and they’re sort of saying jobs aren’t very plentiful, but then you talk to a company and it’s struggling with finding and retaining the talent that they need for a business. I worry about the talent supply. I also worry about whether we have the adequate leadership supply, either externally or internally, that we need to fuel the growth in our business?”



Vice President of Talent Management at Workday

2. The inevitability of AI

Talking about workforce trends without mentioning AI would be like talking about the future of a sport and not mentioning the players.

It’s at the center of every conversation about what comes next, whether that’s how we train and assess people or how workforce planning is conducted.

What will be the biggest HR workforce disruptors over the next 20 years?

When we think across the enterprise, it’s helping people understand the importance of this, because it will impact every single role, and that not only for business success is it essential that people understand the technology and start using it, adopting and experimenting with it, but also their career resilience,” Vuicic says.

AI’s potential value for businesses is unmeasurable. We won’t know for several years where its ceiling is, or if it even has one. Today, people are still the primary driver of business success and the primary goal of implementing AI should be to make them more productive and successful.

“AI is not a solution to a challenge, it’s a tool. When you look at roles and responsibilities, you kind of have to plot it on an axis of highest and lowest amount of automation potential and what requires the greatest and least amount of human touch. It’s a complex set of exercises but really important to do if you want AI to be an aid for productivity.”


Amanda Halle,

Founder & CEO of Mindful Growth Partners

3. DEI Remains With Pay Transparency On The Rise

2023 may have been a tough year for diversity, equity and inclusion, but rolling it back up under HR’s purview after it had become its own thing doesn’t mean the focus on inclusion is going anywhere.

The leading HR trends in 2024 are AI, skills focus, hybrid/remote policies, data and analytics, DEI, and pay transparency.

Around 5% of survey respondents cited DEI and pay transparency as an important trend to take note of in 2024 as more states implement pay transparency laws and gender diversity continues to be a priority.

“You’re seeing more and more states pop up with pay transparency regulations. It’s continuing to focus in terms of how employers can be more transparent, more aligned to that human to human connection in terms of pay conversations.”


Tina Wang,

Divisional Vice President of HR at ADP

As standard practices around pay transparency change and DEI structures shift, each was going to be ab important topic for HR and people ops professionals.

However, in a year where politics is already going to be on everyone's mind, it's likely that DEI and pay transparency get attention from other parts of the organization as well.

Top Priorities

"Every single individual within your employee population needs to be upskilled within AI. It's not just your technologists, everyone needs to have some level of baseline understanding of what AI is, what your policies are associated with it, and how your organization is leveraging it strategically."

Alex Link
Lead Director, Talent Strategy, CVS Health

As we mentioned previously, the talent landscape hasn’t become easier to navigate just because people are starting to leave less frequently. Instead, what they want from employers looks exactly like what the employers themselves want… reskilling and upskilling.

Almost universally, experts predict that learning and development is going to play a big part in what comes next and is at the core of any good talent retention program.

“Critical to navigating the impending technological disruptions is the cultivation of a corporate culture that places a premium on continuous learning and adaptability. This for me goes beyond survival.”



Vice President of Finance, People and Culture at DocuWare

Also among the top trends was something many listed as a top priority in 2024; establishing a return-to-office policy that made sense for their people and continued to meet employee expectations.

The fact is, the pandemic changed people’s mentality around not just where they could work, but where they should work. That isn’t to say those opinions all move in the same direction. There’s a great deal of complexity around people’s experience, needs, the demands of their role, and what sort of environment will serve their professional development and goals best.

“Continuing to offer that flexibility in that hybrid world is going to be key. This builds trust between the employer and the employee and that organization,” Wang said.

Where Do We Go From Here?

The move to becoming a skills-based organization is something HR teams are going to continue talking about over the next five years.

In a workforce that will soon have five generations inhabiting roles across the business, soft skills and a desire to learn continuously will remain evergreen. For the organization, getting the right people involved at the right time will unlock new ways of working and achieving larger aims.

“Change management (is needed) to help people understand how they need to adapt, how they develop the skills and to change the way that companies are organized so that org structure is more dynamic. A system where people are organized around the skills people have and coalesce around problems to solve. HR professionals are leading on this as the driver of organizational adaptability.”



Chief People Officer at Thomson Reuters

Sounds great, right? Not so fast. Given the data issues many companies have and their overall preparedness to shift the way they approach talent, a great many organizations interested in a skills based approach simply aren't ready for it.

"The top to bottom organizational skill taxonomy and cataloging we know is going to die in the next year or so," says Dan George, CEO and Founder of Piper Key Analytics. "It's a never ending job and trying to build a new model of it with AI is proving too much work for too little reward."

George advises that organizations who do well with executing a skills based approach tend to look at what are their critical skills and what's driving the biggest the largest amount of business growth?

Less of a rigid skills taxonomy is needed and the answers to these questions cannot simply be "the entire organization". Instead there must be more of a focus on who has the right skills and wants to do certain types of work.

The types of work may not be what you initially hire an employee to do. Job titles will likely lose some of their meaning.

“We want to be able to identify what our employees learned over time, what they’re interested in doing, if we have the right resources for a particular project, etc,” said Victoria Myers, Global Head of Talent Attraction at Amdocs. “It means moving from being job and role-based to looking at what skills we need for a project or initiative and what skills are currently available in the workforce.”

Participating HR Leaders

Bill Huffaker
Vice President of Talent Management at Workday
Tina Wang
Divisional Vice President of HR at ADP
Mary Alice Vuicic
Chief People Officer at Thomson Reuters

Alex Link
Lead Director, L&D, at CVS Health
Benedikt Dischinger
Vice President of Finance, People and Culture at DocuWare
Amanda Halle
Founder & CEO of Mindful Growth Partners

Weronika Niemcyzk-Savage
Chief People & Culture Officer, Cyncly
Victoria Myers
Global Head of Talent Management, Amdocs
Annette Vandamas
Director, People Partner, ABBYY

Felicia Shakiba
Fractional CPO, CPO Playbook
Robert Bird
Professor of Business Law at the University of Connecticut


Get The Full Report

Download our 2024 Workplace Trends report to find out how key figures in tech, healthcare and other industries see the future of the workplace taking shape.

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David Rice
By David Rice

David Rice is a long time journalist and editor who specializes in covering human resources and leadership topics. His career has seen him focus on a variety of industries for both print and digital publications in the United States and UK.

Finn Bartram
By Finn Bartram

Finn is an editor at People Managing People. He's passionate about growing organizations where people are empowered to continuously improve and genuinely enjoy coming to work. If not at his desk, you can find him playing sports or enjoying the great outdoors.