This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Leadership in Normal 2.0

  The Herman Trend Alert

December 27, 2006

2007 Workforce/Workplace Forecast

Each year at this time, The Herman Group issues its annual workforce/workplace forecast. For more information or to schedule an interview with Joyce Gioia-Herman, call Raleigh Pinskey at 480-488-4840 or e-mail her at

  1. Job Hopping to Accelerate. Fueled by increasing job creation and the fact that more than half of the United States areas have flipped to being sellers’ markets, dissatisfied workers worldwide with a wider variety of choices will choose to leave their employers in greater numbers. Particularly, younger workers will feel less attached to their employers and have the confidence to jump to another job.

  2. Employers Looking for Better Efficiencies Employers large and small will continue to look for ways to economize and drive more profit to the bottom line. We are already seeing an increasing lack of tolerance for workers who have been resting on their laurels (and/or relationships) for years. Finally, there is a growing awareness of the high cost of employee turnover, and employers worldwide will seek innovative approaches to retention.

  3. Older Workers More Highly Valued. Following the lead of a few model employers, public and private sector employers desiring to retain the intellectual capital in their older workers will offer more flexible work arrangements to these workers. This flexibility will include phased retirement, part-time work, and seasonal work (at a significant premium in salary), all with a benefits package that makes it worthwhile to keep working.

  4. Employers Will Embrace New Technologies to Do More with Less Employers are increasingly applying new technologies to increase profits. Examples of this trend include the adoptions of self-check-out in supermarkets and self-check-in at hotels and airports. The development and implementation of these new technologies will require more highly skilled people.

  5. Business Communities Will Address their Dissatisfaction with Schools Employers, dissatisfied with the preparation of recent graduates, will be motivated to take action. An increasing number of community initiatives will address these issues. The effectiveness of these initiatives will depend on the community support of students, parents, and the local school system. Expect to see more mentoring and outreach to youth.

  6. Continuing Increases in Training and Development Employees at all levels will be expected to participate in more training. More employers will require this investment in self-development for the mutual benefit of both parties. Part of the rationale for this increasing investment is employers’ inability to find candidates with the right experience, so they will have to “grow their own.”

  7. Offshoring and Reverse-offshoring Will Continue to Increase Not heeding the experience of other employers or the Gartner Study, some employers chasing the dream of increasing profitability will continue to try offshoring. In the meantime, companies in India and elsewhere will engage in reverse-offshoring, hiring and training U.S. graduates in other countries at foreign local scale.

  8. Using Technology and Business Intelligence, Recruiting will Morph Using more sophisticated technology like virtual video interviews and advanced pre-employment assessments, the Internet will facilitate advances in the technology for recruiting we could only dream about in the past. Through video interviews (see the Herman Trend Alert of January 3, 2007), employers will save hours of interviewing time and enjoy a higher level of EEO compliance. In addition, wise employers will engage leading edge firms to provide business intelligence that will help them make better hiring and salary decisions.

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