We appreciate this is a sprawling topic, for which we’ll be writing about in greater depth over the course of time now. But even from a high level, there’s a lot of behavior shift and new adoption needed to adapt to, not only change but rolling interruptive change.
As businesses continue to navigate the easing of lockdown restrictions and the growing threat of the second wave of infections, the road to recovery is becoming an increasingly hard one to plan for. But rather than wait to follow guidance, HR and people leaders should be at the forefront of this new era and leading the progress.
When it comes to your workforce’s needs and how they’re to be managed and supported, it’s not just physical health guidance that HR must consider. HR directors will need to make sure that their organization is looking at people holistically and from a data orientation. This is one of the measures which can protect business continuity, maintain employee wellbeing and productivity, all the while ensuring that in the fight for talent, they remain competitive.
Don’t tackle everything
We must not forget that businesses and different departments don’t just exist – they’re led, supported and output data. Resisting the urge to panic and instead systematically analyzing all departments and disciplines in your business is the best route to avoid panic and act substantively. Either start with your biggest risks or biggest opportunities, investigate the quantitative and qualitative system output to find the patterns, the route to optimize and fundamentally bolster that area of the business
Nobody expects you to have all the answers to how your customers will behave in a post-COVID-19 era. In fact, in a recent survey of CEOs in the Fortune 500 List, 54% ranked the impact on customers and uncertainty with their business continuity or vulnerability in their top three current concerns. As long as you understand the scale of customers’ demand and your organization’s capacity to meet it, you can be comfortable with uncertainty and take a new approach to planning that others can learn from.
That means HR leaders need to commit to the way they work with data so that it’s possible to plan for your workforce’s future, even when you don’t know what it will hold. This will transform how quickly you as an HR leader can respond to market changes and pave the way for a return to prosperous people management even amid such unprecedented times.
Go beyond health
It’s vital with the easing of lockdown measures that you commit to continue monitoring the health and wellbeing of your entire workforce. Not only does it quickly flag up how any absence could impact the organization as a whole, but it’s also vital to keeping workers engaged and ensuring no one is ever stretched too much or in danger.
It’s more than that, however. It’s also about monitoring performance, enhancing interaction and ultimately refining the organization’s approach to how work is done remotely, how work has changed, and with it which skills are now needed and how to nurture talent.
The rules around working environments have changed, and to get the best talent, organizations will have to have the best post-COVID-19 setups. Sure, ‘virtual offices’ and socially distanced meeting rooms are important, but they are par for the course. What does your development strategy look like? How will it help to replace those fortuitous creative moments that lead to a breakthrough?
Also, when considering the emerging talent and new talent joining, it’s essential to understand that ‘learn on the job’ means now. A lot of the knowledge sharing via osmosis comes from being in a close-knit office environment, if that’s not there it has to be designed into the knowledge transfer flow.
Set your mind to the new-normal simply being ‘normal’. How to manage this are fundamental concerns running through the C suite of all enterprises right now. But the answers will begin to be found from the employee solution ecosystem that your business has. Undoubtedly, you’ll need to fill sudden gaps across talent, culture, communications, or learning. But, like Beem, there are plenty of great partners out there.
Find the path from your employee data
HR leaders across the globe have now started to realize that it’s near impossible to know what the future holds for their people in a post-COVID-19 world. So, as you try and anticipate what’s next, planning for different scenarios will enable swifter and well-managed responses.
In fortifying the bottom line, consider surveying your sales teams for opportunity, deficits, and risks. This may be a wellspring of insight that many leaders either don’t have the system in place to scan for or oftentimes overlook in the density of modern BI.
Temperature and satisfaction polls offer a window into cultural and workplace alignment with your business, the feedback here can ensure leaders can quickly respond with comms and engagement initiatives to either correct or further leverage. This metric, oftentimes overlooked but will provide actionable data that will be priceless to operations in any post-pandemic business.
The bottom line here is that your people are a treasure trove of insight that people leaders can and should be exploring, being in constant communication, across the spectrum will keep cultural bonds intact and the business acting in unison with its greatest asset… it’s people.