10 HR Stories We Will Still Be Talking About in 2018

HR News 2018 2017 may be fading in the rearview mirror, but the memories are sure to live on. What will HR still be talking about in 2018?

The new working mother

2017 delivered a first; thirty-something women having more babies than their 20-something counterparts. It's sure to affect employers looking to preserve mid-career talent pipelines.

The new working father

Sure, men have been prioritizing dad time for a while. But the big PS in 2017 is that they're also waiting longer to have children (average age: 31), fueling a potential double-whammy for the above talent pipelines.

On-ramping is the rage

Splashy leave policies may get all the headlines, but the real measure of retention is whether new parents come back. And employers aren't taking chances: about 1 in 10 now offer return-to-work benefits, up from about zero just a few years ago.

Changing workforce demographics, part 1

Remember Lizzie McGuire? The Millennial's no teenager; she turned 30 this year. It may be time to start replacing ping pong tables with grownup benefits.

Changing workforce demographics, part 2

Remember Y2K? It was 18 years ago. Babies born that year are applying to college. Word is by 2020 ; just three years from now ; Millennials and Gen Z will make up three quarters of our workforce

All-time low birthrates

Another story about babies: there are fewer of them. And few babies and lots of retiring Boomers could spell trouble for the future. We're going to need...whatever generation comes after Gen Z. Might be a good time to make sure employees feel careers and kids are a possibility.

The return of the vacation

Time off is on the upswing. How much? A whopping .6 days. A pittance? Maybe. But more is more, so employers take note: it may signal that work/life balance is reemerging as an employee priority.

All-time high education debt

$1.4 trillion in education debt is nothing to sneeze at -- affecting budgets as well as company bottom lines. No wonder Massachusetts' "Student Debt Loan Repayment Employer Guide" is getting a lot of eyes.

Tuition benefits rise again

The near-death of Internal Revenue Section 127 (the rule allowing employers to contribute $5,250 without it counting as taxable income) put tuition benefits in the spotlight. It would have been a loss: employees value education over even free healthcare. You never know how valuable something is until it's almost gone.

Hi Dad!

Finally, a shoutout to this guy and the immortal words, "I think one of your children's just walked in." The interrupted interview heard round the world reminded everyone there's no substitute for a backup plan!and a good door lock. We'll be laughing about this for decades.

Written by: Lisa Oppenheimer