Press releases

Belgian organisations fail to prioritise well-being at work

For 89 percent of Belgian HR, IT and business respondents, their organisation’s strategy does not explicitly seek to integrate well-being into the design of work.

Brussels, Belgium – 18 June 2020

Deloitte’s 10th annual Human Capital Trends report reveals that Belgian organisations are not yet fully leveraging the environment that technology creates to humanise the world of work. Eighty-nine percent of Belgian respondents report that their organisation’s strategy does not explicitly seek to integrate well-being into the design of work, representing a huge missed opportunity, especially in light of COVID-19. Looking at the skills needed to future proof the workforce, 55 percent said that between half and all of their workforce will need to change their skills and capabilities in the next three years, while only 34 percent are ready or very ready to take action. Almost half of the Belgian respondents use Artificial Intelligence to assist workers, compared to only 13 percent that will use AI to replace workers.


Yves Van Durme, Global Human Capital partner: “The physical and mental well-being, as well as financial security, of employees has become even more important for organisations in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. As organisations plan the gradual return to work, it is time to embed well-being into every aspect of the design and delivery of work itself and to fundamentally redesign work to focus on productivity and well-being. Employee well-being is no longer only a matter for HR, it needs to be a priority in the boardroom.”

Belgian organisations lag behind in integrating well-being

Belgian organisations need to catch up to integrate well-being into work. A staggering eighty-nine percent of Belgian respondents report that their organisation’s strategy does not explicitly seek to integrate well-being into the design of work, representing a huge missed opportunity (compared to 79 percent globally and 82 percent in Western Europe). Nearly 30 percent said that their leaders are not visibly practicing and promoting well-being (compared to 20.5 percent globally and 22.5 percent in Western Europe). Yet 70 percent of Belgian respondents identified well-being as an important or very important priority for their organisation’s success, and nearly all (91 percent) said that well-being is an organisational responsibility.

When it comes to measuring the impact of well-being on organisational performance, 55 percent of our survey respondents said that their organisations are not measuring it at all. Those respondents whose organisations did were most likely to report that the impact was largely in improving the workforce experience. Less than 40 percent believed that their well-being strategy was positively affecting other business outcomes, such as the organisation’s customer experience, financial outcomes, reputation, and innovation and adaptability.

Fifty-five percent of survey respondents thinks the workforce needs to change skills and capabilities

In the coming three years, between half and all of their workforce will need to change their skills and capabilities according to 55 percent of the Belgian respondents. Yet only 34 percent are ready to very ready for this trend, versus 42 percent globally.

Although organisations are trying a variety of strategies to future proof their workforce, 68 percent of respondents report their organisations are currently making only moderate investments in reskilling or no investment at all. Thirty-seven percent named difficulty in identifying development needs and priorities as the greatest barrier to workforce development in their organisation, with only 15 percent expressing confidence “to a great extent” that their organisation can anticipate the skills they will need in three years.

“COVID-19 has reminded us that technical skills are becoming outdated quickly. Organisations should be investing in longer lasting capabilities like creativity, collaboration, critical thinking and emotional intelligence that can keep their workforce relevant,” added Nathalie Vandaele, Human Capital Lead Deloitte Belgium.

Almost half of Belgian respondents uses AI to assist workers

Nathalie Vandaele: “As AI enters the workforce, the critical question is not whether it will affect jobs, but how. COVID-19 has shown organisations that while technology can augment and supplement work, it does not replace what is needed from humans. It is encouraging to see that almost half of the Belgian respondents are using AI to assist workers, in contrast to a little over 10 percent that will use it to replace workers. The majority believe that the number of jobs will either stay the same or increase as a result of the use of AI.”

More than half of the respondents are using AI to improve consistency and quality, and 27 percent are using it to assist their workers in developing insights, which is higher than globally (16 percent) and Western Europe (21.5 percent). Surprisingly, only 19 percent of Belgian respondents are making significant investments in reskilling to support their AI strategy, a trend we also see in both Western Europe and globally.

Moreover, almost 80 percent of the Belgian respondents think there are ethical concerns related to the future of work in their organisation (e.g. maintenance of privacy and control of worker data, fairness of pay, management of the impact of automation on the workforce), which is comparable to the global number (85 percent) and Western Europe (78 percent). Although they think organisations are responsible for addressing these concerns, only 21.39 percent of Belgian respondents have clear policies and leaders in place to manage ethics in the future of work.

Press contact

Nathalie Vanderbeken
Marketing & Communications Manager
+32 (0) 2 600 60 83
+32 (0) 479 90 25 71

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