The best gifts for HR teams this Christmas

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So as the seasonal break looms like an oncoming freight train, we ask, what would we like Father Christmas to leave us under the tree this year?

No more curveballs please

The last 20 months have delivered more than our fair share of surprises and reversals.

It’s seen HR stretched to its limits to accommodate rapid shifts in the way people work; spin policy and procedure out of thin air as people hopped on and off furlough; and coax a wary workforce back into the workplace, while balancing wellbeing against a backdrop of societal upheaval and existential dread.

This coming year, what we really want is some stability please. Thanks.


While headline writers everywhere are having a field day whipping up a frenzy around ‘The Great Resignation’, HR teams are facing another challenge. One that we’re calling (with similar enthusiastic hyperbole) ‘The Recruitment Crunch’.

Talent is in shorter supply than ever, and with vacancies at their highest level since records began, the jobs market today has become heavily weighted towards candidates. Little wonder at the resurgence in internal recruitment practices.

Read top 30 HR Tech influencer Barry Flack’s latest article: “Why we’re in danger of missing the point about ‘The Great Resignation’.

… talent that stays

A more competitive job market, combined with the pandemic-powered increase in remote working, means talent is – and is likely to stay – more mobile than ever.
How well and consistently your onboarding process performs will be a factor in how you hang onto your new talent, particularly where that onboarding is done remotely.

While for existing employees, wellbeing and overall employee experience are now recognised as key factors in how effectively organisations can prevent talent from churning.

What can data tell us about employee retention? 

Hybrid work that works

Hybrid has had some time to bed-in over the last few months, so for next year, we’d like to see the lessons we’ve already learned about hybrid working applied across our organisation.

Not having their direct reports in their immediate eyeline does funny things to some managers, so we’ll need effective tactics to manage micro-managers, and reliable systems to spot and prevent burnout.

A way to measure ‘Inclusion’

Diversity and inclusion (D&I) is an action item on every board’s agenda in 2022. From an employer brand perspective, D&I is no longer a nice-to-have – incoming and existing employees want to see explicit evidence of initiatives to boost diversity, and if it’s not there, they’re going to want to know why.

“Diversity is being invited to the party, inclusion is being asked to dance,” says Verna Myers, VP of D&I at Netflix. But how do we measure inclusion?

If you’re struggling with this question, this article should give you some ideas: How can technology help us boost D&I

Better reporting

“On the 12th day of Christmas, my HRMS gave to me – reliable data and insightful, automated people analytics dashboards, please.”

We spoke to HR consultant and founder of Rethink HR Zoe Wilson earlier this year about how HR can get the wheel spinning on people analytics to prove the case for investment. “You can do more than you think, with data your probably already have access to,” she told us.

Here’s the handy practical guide she helped us create: Getting started with people analytics

More time

In lieu of a time machine to allow us to get everything done, what we need this year for Christmas more than anything are ways to be more efficient. We need to finally ditch the time-consuming, manual, process-heavy administration tasks that have traditionally been associated with HR.

A shift to systems thinking can help alleviate much of HR’s administrative burden.

Tasks that are generated because of inefficient systems can be categorised as ‘failure demand’. And some experts estimate that HR can spend up to 70% of its time managing failure demand. For more on this, check out this article: “How to stop doing work you don’t want”


If 2022 is the year you plan to shed manual data admin, start building data-backed people strategy, and provide your people with seamless ways to manage their own HR data, our comprehensive HRMS solution help.

If you’d like to see XCD in action, book a demo. Alternatively, you can give us a call on +44 (0) 800 0432923, or send us an email at We look forward to hearing from you.