HR research in Ukraine: experience, barriers and challenges in people management

November 2023
Special research on types, methods and barriers to research among HR managers and experts

Currently, the paradigm of managing organizations and people is changing mentally. Military realities have led HR communities to face new challenges in working with human capital. HR research, which used to be rarely conducted, has started to become popular because it provides important insights into attracting talent. However, it turned out that companies do not have enough experience or qualified specialists on staff to organize them. Gradus Research conducted a special study on the types, methods, and barriers to research among HR managers and experts, and also touched upon the topic of problems in people management.

What are the current challenges in talent management?

The full-scale war has exacerbated the problems in people management: 68% of respondents said that burnout and fatigue are significant challenges in talent management. 62%, in turn, reported difficulties in finding specialists in certain areas, and 60% reported a shortage of personnel in the market.

How often do companies conduct HR research?

Olga Prokhorenko, an independent HR expert, notes that the topic of research is becoming more and more in demand and important, and the research itself is becoming more popular.

According to the survey, 82% of respondents will organize HR research in 2023 and plan to do so in 2024. Of these, 60% of companies have conducted them before and are still doing so. Another 5% of surveyed company representatives say they started researching human capital management issues with the start of a full-scale war, and 17% plan to introduce such a practice for the first time in 2024.

What are companies mostly interested in HR research?

According to respondents, the most popular HR research method is eNPS (67% of respondents), and the most popular topics are engagement (57%) and corporate culture (41%). They show how employees feel about the organization, whether they enjoy working for the company, and whether they will be with it in difficult times.

"HR research helps build a people-centered organization not only in form but also in substance. They contribute to the development of a culture of inclusiveness and resilience in companies, as they make organizations proactive rather than reactive. Research helps to understand trends, be strategic, flexible, and aware of variability," comments Olga Prokhorenko.

What hinders HR research?

32% of respondents indicated that the main barrier to conducting HR research is the lack of people who could do it.

Another 21% of respondents see no need to conduct research. This may mean that top managers and HR professionals do not always understand what kind of research is involved and, accordingly, why it is needed.

"Research helps to understand the essence of the problem and not to act blindly, meaning that the problem is dealt with without wasting time and effort," says Olga Prokhorenko, "Research can be compared to a check-up of the body, the only difference is that it concerns not an individual but the organization as a whole. They help to identify problems, and ultimately, to get a "doctor's report" in the form of recommendations for further action. This saves money and time, and helps to analyze what is happening in the organization with people, culture, leadership, etc. Understanding this makes it possible to formulate the right plans and act effectively."

Yevheniia Blyzniuk, sociologist, founder and director of Gradus Research, comments:

"The full-scale war has exacerbated many problems with human resources in companies. And research is now a good tool for finding insights and testing hypotheses to solve these problems. We at Gradus Research, with our expertise in sociological and marketing research, see this potential for use in HR research. And our extensive consumer panel allows us to conduct research both among internal audiences and external audiences, i.e. potential candidates, to help companies see and address the unobvious shortcomings of talent acquisition."

Read more about HR research by Gradus Research here.

The full report on the research results is available upon request in the form below.

The study was conducted by Gradus Research using the method of self-administered questionnaire in a mobile application. The target group of the study was representatives of the HR community. A total of 77 effective interviews were conducted. The survey period lasted from September 18 to October 16, 2023.

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