How the Future of Work impacts the employee lifecycle?

The employee lifecycle encapsulates every stage of an employee’s journey through an organisation. It should reflect the overarching business strategy and be developed within this holistic framework rather than isolation. Diversity of talent and thought should be like DNA running through every area of the organisation rather than standalone initiatives. A solid and thorough plan with robust project management is essential. Fail to plan, plan to fail is a cliché for a reason, especially for people-related projects where there are so many moving parts. However, it is important that this does not mean it is constrained by bureaucracy and slow decision making. Agile projects need agile decision making, which aligns with the needs of a changing workplace.

We outline examples of how an organisation’s employee lifecycle may change in preparation for the Future of Work. Some activity may address more than one shift so you will see duplication. You may be doing some already or see them as common sense. Others may seem too big a change for organisational acceptance.


1. ATTRACTION – the diverse people you need now and in the future

  • Beyond employee surveys, use a mix of quantitative and qualitative data to provide behavioural insights into what the most (and least) engaged employees are doing and
    how happy they are doing it.
  • Move from trying to be all things to all people to individually tailored campaigns matching what potential employees want with what the organisation needs.
  • Be where the people you want are and interact with them in the way they want. It is not about shifting the organisation geographically but to proactively look for the diverse talent you need.
  • Use conversion and retention as measures of success to help focus on quality rather than quantity.


2. RECRUITMENT – securing the candidates that will make your organisation better

  • Know the skills your organisation lacks that will stop it achieving its business strategy.
  • Prize the whole person and recognise that they may demonstrate the skills you need outside of the workplace. This will be even more relevant to happiness as this is what they choose to do with their time. This is especially relevant for internal opportunities. Don’t define them by their job titles.
  • Snooze you lose. With record levels of employment, you will need ever faster recruitment processes to secure scarce talent with immediate decision making the default. Think ‘hire in a day’.


3. ONBOARDING – contributing from the first day, if not before

  • Start connecting them with their new internal network.
  • Get the necessary admin out the way before they join, involving them only when absolutely necessary. Digital is a great enabler for this. Paper should be the exception.
  • Agree their individual commitment so you both know
    what is expected before they arrive.


4.  DEVELOPMENT – grow professionally and personally

  • Focus on the personal of personal development plans – don’t just think about it through a work or career lens but let it be driven by their growth mindset.
  • Treat development like you would an IT programme. Refresh, upgrade and improve to avoid becoming obsolete.
  • Base around what happiness means to an individual.
  • An inclusive culture values the opinions of all. Reverse mentoring offers a formal way to engage with diverse viewpoints and gain insight. Don’t rely on the chain of line management.
  • Development may include gaining experiences outside of the current organisation. Support them in this and they will be an advocate and positively impact your attraction and recruitment strategy.


5. RETENTION – continued performance, flexibility for changing needs

  • If needs are changing, give employees the opportunity to change with them should they wish.
  • Put individuals in control of how they want to work.
  • Look at what is happening around you, partnered with data to see what is really happening in your organisation and identify potential risks.


6. SEPARATION – smooth transitions to new opportunities, whoever initiates

  • Recognise that employees are unlikely to want to spend their entire careers with your organisation and that their timetable for moving on may differ from yours.
  • Regardless of the reason for them leaving, treat them as adults and continue to nurture the relationship. Again, this will feed into your attraction strategy.
  • Leaving is not always forever. By ensuring every separation is a positive experience, the opportunity grows of re-appointing people that have flourished outside an organisation to come back and share their expertise.


r10 can work with and support you so you can get your organisation where you want it to be. Using our Five-Step Framework, we can tailor this to your individual needs taking into account what it is that you want to be doing, whether that’s continuing with the day to day activity or developing the future. Read more by downloading the Organisations for Adults: The Future of Work and its impact on people paper.