As a business leader who is constantly taking calculated risks to implement innovative change within an organization, 2018 is the year to align your goals with the streamlined processes that will optimize professional endeavors.

The most successful leaders are those who choose to strategically venture forward and take calculated risks that maximize technological potentials, enabling their teams to reach their professional goals.

To move your team forward as a best-in-class HR department, agile leaders must take action now to align teams with actionable steps inspired by the 2018 HR insights from Josh Bersin that will continue to change the face of the industry as we know it.

Over the past two years, the East Tenth Group Team has looked towards the HR Predictions from Josh Bersin, Principal and Founder of Bersin by Deloitte. After analyzing these predictions, we’ve compiled Bersin’s findings into the Top 10 HR Predictions for 2016, 2017, and now, the Top 12 HR Predictions for 2018 in an accessible and shareable format.

These resources have been expertly developed by Bersin and his team, and enable both our team and HR industry professionals to get a glimpse into the future of HR technologies, strategies, and processes which align organizational structures with future-forward changes needed to create best-in-class businesses.

Discover the previous key insights from Josh Bersin that have helped propel the HR industry forward to create versatile and thriving teams, and the 2018 predictions from Bersin that will allow HR leaders to further enhance their capabilities. We’ve taken note of Bersin’s previous predictions to align ourselves with where the HR industry stands today, and to better understand where we’re headed.

Digital HR Is Here to Stay

Whether businesses are ready or not, a digitally-enhanced HR industry is here to stay. Although leaders realize that digital HR changes are necessary for organizational growth, applying these tools and technologies into streamlined processes can be a challenge.


2018 is the year of digital transformation and utilization, according to Bersin. He predicts that it will be up to leaders to identify their organization’s “Digital DNA”, meaning that they have to “be” digital businesses, rather than just “do” digital.

However, he also states that HR departments must maintain their “human” qualities, finding ways to build a human touch and connection into digital solutions.


As we transitioned into 2017, Bersin noted that the shift towards digital processes was amplified, with HR implementing digital HR and L&D tools that helped organizations not simply utilize technology, but be digitally-enabled organizations that use digital tools to deliver superior solutions. For example, new digital learning solutions were developed that made L&D experiences more streamlined and captivating.

Additionally, it was predicted that self-directed learning opportunities would become an HR norm through the creation of accessible digital resources to help individuals learn and develop their capabilities when it best suited them. We wrote about these types of resources in our blog “How to Use Technology to Meaningfully Enhance Your Leadership.”


In the 2016 HR projections, Bersin noted a major HR trend that was leaning towards a design-centric digital focus within HR. As leaders, this shift allowed us to begin focusing on how we support and serve our employees, creating better experiences rather than simply requiring participation in development programs.

That year, the HR industry was overtaken by apps and the cloud, while traditional software was less relevant.

New Leaders are Taking Charge

Young leaders provide countless assets to departments and organizations alike, but it takes future-forward current leaders to provide them with the tools they need to thrive. HR teams have made strides in the last couple years by placing a focus on developing technological processes and leadership models that provide opportunities for young leaders.


Enabling young leaders to find success in your organization in 2018 involves the seamless integration of work and learning, according to Bersin. Thanks to advanced technologies, high-potential employees can learn as they work with instant access to content libraries, experience platforms, and other digital learning offerings.


Moving into 2017, Bersin saw that strong HR teams were beginning to provide young people with the support, tools, and mentorship needed to help them improve their skills and grow into bold leaders.

To maintain this trend, current leaders must continue to push for leadership models that focus on team-centric performance, continuous learning, and creating agile team members. At East Tenth Group, we believe that innovative coaching for millennial leaders is key to organizational success.


2016 was the year of HR reinvention. With a technological focus on people analytics, Bersin predicted that the alignment of HR and business capabilities allowed younger HR leaders to emerge and create future-forward organizations.

Diverse Workplaces Will Make Their Mark

It’s 2018, and we’re still talking about diversity in the workplace. However, many HR leaders are striving to cultivate all-encompassing workplace diversity with the help of technology and policy changes that place value on differences.


Josh Bersin predicts that 2018 will be the year that agile organization models go mainstream, with thriving and diverse organizations sharing a culture, values, and transparent goals for a fully aligned business model.


Gone are the days of inclusion and diversity being an HR program. Rather, they’ve become a top priority, with digital tools being harnessed to measure issues of inclusion and sharing findings to develop policies and programs that cultivate equal opportunities from the start.

From focusing on bringing more women to the table to driving diverse teams in which no one category dominates a sample, enabling diverse workplaces starts with creating an open dialogue and implementing future-forward strategies to hold organizations accountable.

Exceptional organizations provide the tools, pathways, and opportunities that create inclusive and diverse workplace cultures and environments that develop strong, bold leaders.


Bersin noted that the merging of diversity and inclusion of key business and HR strategies began in 2016, as it was brought to the forefront of the organizations with C-Suite executives taking it on as a strategic issue.

Employee Engagement and Culture

Although most HR leaders are aware that high employee engagement leads to superior results, measuring the impact of your work culture and engagement endeavors can be a challenge that is difficult to overcome without the right technological assistance.


This year, Bersin encourages leaders to start treating employees like customers, recognizing that “people are the product.” In both on and offline methods, it’s time to cultivate an environment that enables engagement through meaningful work, performance check-ins, and growth opportunities for employees at all levels.


Driving employee engagement and workplace culture continued to thrive in 2017, with many organizations setting out to define their culture and how they could measure it.

Along with Bersin’s notes that leaders should focus on utilizing HR tech and tools that boost departmental and organizational processes with a measurable impact, he encouraged that attention be given to the heart of your business: your employees. Leaders should create work environments that encourage mental well-being to drive organizational success.

At East Tenth Group, we strongly believe that emotionally intelligent leaders are smarter leaders.


2016 was the year of increasing team-wide engagement, retention, and culture with newly-developed feedback and analytics systems.

Designed to help companies understand how they could change their management styles and organizational culture, Bersin saw an increase in tools like culture assessment models, anonymous social networking tools, and pulse survey tools that were introduced into the HR industry.

Talent and Performance Management

Next-generation talent and performance management platforms continue to make their mark in the HR industry, as was first predicted in 2016.


In 2018, Bersin predicts that it’s time for talent acquisition strategies to tap into the power of enabling employees to experience internal mobility, with the ability to move job to job every 2-3 years. By being able to shift attention to different positions, high-potential talent can find where they thrive, while innovative thinking is encouraged throughout an organization.


The shift to a more agile toolbox of performance and talent management platforms continued on from Bersin’s 2016 HR predictions, as HR tools were integrated into talent management and performance management processes. However, a more feedback-based approach has led to new vendors developing performance management systems with unprecedented capabilities, such as capturing feedback to plan for next roles based on data from previous goal discussions.


In his 2016 HR predictions, Bersin stated that tools such as recruitment platforms could help to enable departments to streamline their hiring process, with interview management, candidate relationship management, smart sourcing, and applicant tracking all in one platform.

What Should HR Teams Do in 2018?

Every year, the HR predictions from Josh Bersin allow the HR industry to imagine the future of their industry and take actionable steps towards enhancing their strategies, processes, and policies that take HR teams and organizations to the next level. The key actionable steps from the 2018 Top 12 HR Predictions from Josh Bersin that should be implemented by best-in-class HR leaders include:

Align your processes with digital tools: Becoming “digital” is a crucial step for HR success in 2018. From your systems, to employee services, to L&D, a future-forward HR team will optimize their digital capabilities for organizational success.

Reconsider your current jobs and organization model: This year, HR leaders should take time to rethink the current operating models surrounding leadership, mobility, and performance management.

Unite and empower your HR staff: Redefining your identity as a department and creating streamlined processes that align with your organization’s mission and values enables your HR team to “act as one.”

Focus on the employee experience: When you shift your attention away from programs and processes for performance management towards feedback and design thinking, your employees will engage more and develop trust with team leaders.

At East Tenth Group, we believe that accessible and action-driven resources and support help leaders generate best-in-class HR professionals, while boldly cultivating their executive presence. Staying on top of the current trends can help make you a future-forward group to drive your organization forward.

We’re excited to learn about the progress that you and your teams are making. What strategic changes are in store for your HR department in 2018? Our team is always ready to help you implement the wide-reaching change that will help drive the bottom line of your company. For more information on our actionable and innovative services, take action now and subscribe to our newsletter, and connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.