“Staying connected” is key to HR management post-COVID-19: Report

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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The impact of COVID-19 affects the way we live and work and adjusting to this new standard will be critical, particularly for organizational human resource (HR) units, to ensure that their ecosystems continue to function smoothly even though employees and management are far apart, a study suggests. 

The study titled “Staying connected to your local workforce” is authored by Anton Whitefoot, the HCM (Human Capital Management) public sector sales leader for the United Kingdom and Ireland and Mike Fadel, principal HCM architect.

According to the study, “The key challenge for all of us will be trying to get to grips with the new norm. This new norm has no timeline, and we do not fully understand the medium or long-term impact yet”.

Moreover, the organizations will be faced with many questions, including:

  • How to remain connected while workers are completely remote?
  • How to prepare to return to work in a manner that protects the health and safety of employees?
  • How can the long-term effect on job patterns and setups be assessed?
  • How to establish and retain contact when some groups of workers work entirely remotely, some entirely from the office and some do a combination of both remote and office?

In light of COVID-19, the problems outlined above are now of the greatest importance.  Even though they were relevant in the pre COVID-19 period too, in many ways, the new scenario would speed up how companies have already built and revamped their workforces.

The studies say that “Digital platforms that are agile can service employees through multiple channels, support managers and extend the ability of HR to drive insight and support organizational development whilst enabling different modes of work will be differentiators.”

PwC survey 

68 percent of CFOs who participated in a recent COVID-19 CFO Pulse Survey conducted by PwC said that the crisis-driven transition to remote work will make their business “better in the long run.”

The majority of respondents also assumed their businesses were going to be more flexible in the future, with PwC forecasting that a “hybrid at-home/on-premise model that is taken as a backup is likely to remain here.”

So staying connected with the local workforce is a key factor for sustaining organizational success. If remote action is accelerated, as CFOs in the PwC survey highlighted, maintaining a relationship will be a major organizational development challenge for HR activities.

HR leaders will have to recognize a variety of factors to remain connected in the best way, including sincere and thoughtful leadership involvement and interventions, recognizing efforts and providing various tools and channels for information access.

At the same time, effective digital platforms to support work and access to HR assets will also help. Learning and development, progress, career development and performance measurement will also play a key role, suggests the report.