Top trends for 2020–2021

With a global pandemic kicking off 2020, the new decade has triggered widespread discussions about our health, wealth, jobs and wellbeing – along with the impact on our collective futures. Workforce health and safety has never been more critical as we embraced new technologies more rapidly and adopt remote working at speed.


COVID-19 did not just invade bodies, it exposed weaknesses in existing structures and accelerated change towards what was previously termed the ‘future of work’.


The four trends Mercer uncovered in 2020 have not only endured an extraordinary year, they have grown in relevance.


According to Canadian HR leaders, nearly 64% expect the pandemic to continue to negatively impact their business in 2021. Nevertheless, investing in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) analytics is going to be a top priority, followed by defining future workforce needs, energizing the employee experience and reinventing flexibility.


Mercer’s refreshed 2020–2021 Global Talent Trends highlights the top priorities setting the agenda for 2021.

Focus on futures

Work together to ensure people thrive now and in the future.

Race to reskill

Transform the workforce for a new world economy.

Sense with science

See ahead by augmenting Al with human intuition.

Our shifting future

We enter 2021 with a fundamentally altered view of work and society. Leaders are listening to their employees more than ever, and need to demonstrate empathy, inclusiveness and responsiveness on a daily basis. Leveraging the insights that emerge, it has never been more vital to weave together the technology and human agendas. What is the best way to respond to these challenges? How are leading organizations balancing listening and duty of care with agility and digital transformation? And how are employers transforming business practices for sustainability? 

Download the 2020–2021 Global Talent Trends

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