Employers must act and mitigate people risk during change management, report warns 

London, 10 October 2023

Employers are still failing to address people risk during business transformation warns a new report from Mercer Marsh Benefits (MMB) and REBA. According to the report’s findings, this oversight means employers face losing their best talent, damaging their reputation and ultimately failing to achieve their strategic goals during periods of change. 

The report, Business Transformation: Mitigating People Risk, surveyed 140 employers representing more than 500,000 employees and found that employers are struggling to connect changing employee expectations with HR and business objectives. The report highlights the need for employers to focus on employee health and wellbeing, as well as diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Aligned to this finding, 70% of respondents said market demand for skills is a challenge, and almost two-thirds said the current cost of recruiting new skills is a risk, with wage inflation and demands being of significant concern for three quarters of respondents. 

Nick McMenemy, Partner, Digital, Strategy & Markets Leader at Mercer Marsh Benefits said, "The findings from this report are alarming and highlight the urgent need for employers to prioritise employee wellbeing and resilience in the face of rapid business transformation. 

"Businesses that fail to take action risk losing valuable talent, falling behind competitors, and potentially facing financial losses. By aligning corporate culture and human values, and by focusing on access and need, employers can mitigate people risks associated with business transformation and ensure that their employees are motivated, well-led, and able to cope with change.”

While half of research respondents have, or are implementing, skills and talent mapping for future business needs, more than a quarter still plan to put this type of strategic planning in place within the next two years. Within two years, any CHRO or HR director not doing this will be in the lower quartile among their peers.

"Employers who fail to address people risk during business transformation are playing a dangerous game. A clear strategy, an aligned reward and benefits offerings, and regularly gathering employee listening data are not just useful first steps, they are essential for survival in today's business landscape," said Mr McMenemy.

The report is part of the REBA/Mercer Marsh Benefits Transforming Engagement Series, which aims to help employers navigate the challenges of business transformation. The series includes reports on aligning corporate culture and human values, technology change, sustainability and more

About Mercer

Mercer believes in building brighter futures by redefining the world of work, reshaping retirement and investment outcomes, and unlocking real health and well-being. Mercer’s approximately 25,000 employees are based in 43 countries and the firm operates in 130 countries. Mercer is a business of Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC), the world’s leading professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy and people, with 85,000 colleagues and annual revenue of over $20 billion. Through its market-leading businesses including MarshGuy Carpenter and Oliver Wyman, Marsh McLennan helps clients navigate an increasingly dynamic and complex environment. For more information, visit www.mercer.com. Follow Mercer on Twitter @Mercer and LinkedIn.

About Marsh McLennan

Marsh McLennan (NYSE: MMC) is the world’s leading professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy and people. The Company’s 85,000 colleagues advise clients in 130 countries. With annual revenue of over $20 billion, Marsh McLennan helps clients navigate an increasingly dynamic and complex environment through four market-leading businesses. Marsh provides data-driven risk advisory services and insurance solutions to commercial and consumer clients. Guy Carpenter develops advanced risk, reinsurance and capital strategies that help clients grow profitably and pursue emerging opportunities. Mercer delivers advice and technology-driven solutions that help organizations redefine the world of work, reshape retirement and investment outcomes, and unlock health and wellbeing for a changing workforce. Oliver Wyman serves as a critical strategic, economic and brand advisor to private sector and governmental clients. For more information, visit marshmclennan.com, or follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.