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Health care costs top list of HR trends to watch
June 29, 2004
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Alexandria, Va. -- The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has released the SHRM Workplace Forecast which projects the top ten trends affecting the American workplace according to a survey of HR professionals. The rising cost of health care tops the list, while security issues, labor shortages and exportation of U.S. jobs also rank as hot topics.

"Successful businesses can adapt to changing economic, political, and social conditions,” says Susan R. Meisinger, SPHR, President and CEO of SHRM. “Being aware of trends affecting the workplace can help an organization proactively anticipate challenges ahead.  Great companies have HR professionals leading the way with smart people strategies as organizations adapt to changing times."

The ‘SHRM Workplace Forecast 2004-2005: A Strategic Outlook’ examines the issues that are affecting macro-trends in the workplace and the jobs, duties and concerns of HR professionals.  The forecast surveyed a random sample of 558 SHRM members.

Top Ten Trends Overall

  • Rise in health care costs
  • Focus on domestic safety and security
  • Use of technology to communicate with employees
  • Growing complexity of legal compliance
  • Use of technology to perform transactional HR functions
  • Focus on global security
  • Preparing for the next wave of retirement/labor shortage
  • Use and development of e-learning
  • Exporting of U.S. manufacturing jobs to developing countries
  • Changing definition of family

In addition, the SHRM Workplace Forecast Survey looks at the top ten key concerns, and other trends identified by the SHRM Workplace Trends and Forecasting Program, that influence overall trends within the following eight key areas: demographics, economics, employment, international issues, political trends, society, science and technology, and HR industry trends.

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