It’s time for HR teams to come up with a new and effective strategy for performance management to ensure that productivity is not affected.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world and its ways in myriad aspects. Each and everyone had to get reoriented to a new life and change the way they live and modify the way they work. What does this mean for an employer and their talent strategies? This is our topic of discussion today.
The economic uncertainties and fears of a deep recession are also major considerations for many employers, but they can’t take a short-term approach and focus only on cost containment. Many employers today have frozen hiring and changed recruitment practices.
Here’re some talent management strategies to ensure that it would be business as usual when the world returns to a normal condition post-COVID.
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Employers need to prioritize job security even as reward programs change and take on a new form. Stability and growth opportunities take the front seat, while the severity of the economic impact of COVID on the specific industry sector will also play a role. The aim is to showcase a sense of purpose, provide responsible rewards while protecting the wellbeing of employees, and concern for the sustainability of the society at large.
As HR leaders reaffirm their commitment to offering stability with growth opportunities to their employees, they are also looking at pay and rewards as overall employee experience. Revisiting comp-ben and reducing salaries may help in tough times, rather than opting for layoffs as companies need to make sure that they are in a position to resume on a full scale when the situation improves. It helps to prioritize employee health as well as income. Surveys show how some employers are paying full salaries (49%) even if quarantine rules curtailed the work of the employees. Many companies ensured that essential workers who continued working on-site even during lockdowns received increased pay by increasing hourly pay (14%), offering overtime, lumpsum bonuses, incentives or hazard pay or some other perk.
Focus on knowledge and innovation to stay agile and leverage capabilities to meet the requirements of exponentially evolving workplaces, even as you mitigate risk. Stay focused on augmenting the pool of talent available to you for a time when things return to normal. Invest in reskilling and upskilling. Help the employees to successfully adapt to the increasing adoption of digital technologies and automation at work. Learning opportunities need to be offered in a continuous stream as employees aspire to grow to their potential.
Avoid short term measures which could create long term issues with one’s ability to attract new talent, employee engagement and productivity, and well as employee commitment. Ensure that their access to the talent supply chain stays intact.
Establish a containment strategy for workforces required to come into the office and check with the others to ensure that their productivity will not be affected by a lack of connectivity. Keep everyone updated on new initiatives and efforts being put in on a regular basis, as work-from-home extends into the foreseeable future and many people are getting stressed and unable to balance work with home. Decide which changes will be permanent and which will change post-pandemic. Have plans in place to manage resistance to change and initiate feedback mechanisms that keep you aware of employee expectations. Take an informed decision on the changes that will outlast the pandemic and changes which will return to normal when it ends.
Ensure business continuity to the extent possible by adopting new processes and keeping critical roles and activities unaffected. Address any gaps and unexpected needs that may crop up in time. Design resilient systems that all people to survive and sustain themselves in an uncertain world. Reduce risks and salvage continuity in business operations. Adopt automation to simplify and digitization to enable remote execution of tasks.
Assess the availability of talent on hand to understand skill strengths, weaknesses, and gaps and to take advantage of available opportunities and even diversify to target new ones by drawing on all available options and skillsets. Have a clear understanding of the skills, capabilities, and experience of your workforce and the key influencers among them and co-opt them as mentors. Adopt technology to create an exponentially altered work culture, enable your employees to work from home, and re-allocate them to projects across locations, based on their specific skill sets and areas of expertise. Make informed talent plans and leverage the collective strengths of your talent community along with the gaps presented across distributed teams, as more and more workers execute their tasks remotely. Benefit the enterprise as a whole with a planned rotation of employees in cross-functional roles.
An uncertain world requires resilience as well as corresponding changes that allow us to continue working. Everything relies on how we manage the change which is why HR needs to encourage a shift in attitude and behaviour to enable employees to face key challenges well. Stay focused on deriving positive outcomes for your business as well as your employees while working to provide continuity as you deal with the change and uncertainty around.