HR 4.0: What to expect in 2030

Jed’s just finishing a six-month assignment with Random Inc. He’s enjoyed his time there, completed the project ahead of expectations, made some great connections, added to his learning and career progression log and felt very comfortable with the company’s culture. After all, Random’s purpose and values were one of the main reasons he took the assignment there and they haven’t let him down, not even when the latest cyber security attack threatened to expose some of his personal IP. Random has asked Jed to sign up for another eighteen months. Ahead of checking in with his AI life coach, Jed checks, an app on his comms device, which he calls up via mind control. He uses this to recalibrate his list of priorities and the app then identifies suitable career partners who can meet his criteria and are currently in need of his talents. He can swipe right to apply. In 2030, it’s a job seeker’s market.

Jed is one of the 65% of workers who freelance. Although he chooses to work flexibly and on a project basis, he does, of course, expect to be measured on his outputs rather than inputs and answers to no one when it comes to where, when and how he works. Prospective employers can easily call up his track record and it’s clear to see that he can be trusted to deliver, to contribute to team harmony and to pass on some of his considerable knowledge to others. In return, it goes without saying that he will have access to his chosen career partner’s full benefits and support from day one. That old notion of organisations as providers of work is long gone; it’s all about who’ll be the best partner for Jed’s career development.

A new breed

The people now accountable for the people centricity of the organisation will be strategists and pragmatists who are adept at forecasting the trends and harnessing the factors that will lead to financial and societal success. These new DPCs (Directors of People and Culture) will be high on the succession list for next CEO and will have been adding value in ways the 2020 HRD can only dream of. They’ve been freed up from the day to day process; admin and employee relations related tasks as these have all been outsourced and/or replaced digitally.  Enabling the happy, healthy workplace is their priority.

Taking care of the individual

The employee experience is heavily customised, from the packages on offer to the support people can access to ensure healthy purpose, health and happiness.  Following the workplace wellbeing crisis, which shot to a head following the pandemic back in 2020, organisations ramped up their support and now employ psychologists to provide support whenever people need it. As work and home lives melded into one, people stopped discussing that old idea of work life balance and instead put their efforts into enabling people to have control over their own lives. To support this, important personal skill such as emotional intelligence, resilience and kindness are now taught in schools. 


All of the Baby Boomer generation have now retired, though many provide valuable legacy advice via the many mentoring apps that are available. The traditional company hierarchy has fragmented. As teams have become more fluid and collaboration is the norm, teams are dictating what type of support they need from their team coaches. This new breed of extremely supportive leader has become highly skilled when it comes to articulating clarity of purpose, ‘what a good job looks like’ and ensuring people have all of the tools they need to get the job done. They understand that the front-line will have all the answers and have therefore become highly skilled facilitators; asking the right questions, listening and encouraging best performance.


The employee experience is seamlessly digitised with consumer-grade technology spanning every step of the journey from recruitment through to send off. Operational and other functional heads are accountable for attracting, recruiting, engaging and retaining their people. The Directors of People and Culture are accountable for workforce planning, positioning organisation’s reputation in the job market and providing the latest tools and techniques so as to enable others. For this, they successfully make the business case for substantial tech budgets. Both permanent and contract workers expect to be able to access learning and development when and however they need it, for example, so training departments no longer exist in favour of content curators and creators – it’s all about on demand learning via the learning hub. The Wellbee tool, developd in 2020 in responses to the workplace wellbeing crisis, has become the international go-to technology for assessing personal wellbeing and accessing support.


There’s a specialist facilitator, who consults with every team to agree exactly what the key metrics are for each project or department. There are never more than five. With the advances in technology over the past few years, measures of success have greatly simplified. Huge swathes of data are crunched into simple insights; clear, simple yet powerful performance indicators. Today’s data-driven organisation has moved far beyond using data to support the decision-making process to using it to enable better decisions. As analytics is applied to combine multiple data sources, resulting in new and better insights, automated decision making is already the norm. 

The answer to what HR will look like in 10 years’ time is that there will be no HR; at least not as we know it. Workers no longer seek ‘providers of work’, in favour of ‘career partners’, which means that all organisations will view recruiting, engaging and retaining the best talent for their cultures as a top priority, rather than paying this lip-service as many of them did back in 2020.

You can try Wellbee for free today for up to 15 people – no strings attached…