On Tuesday 22nd September 2020, Career Star Group goes live! We are bringing you a live webinar with a panel discussion looking at the future of career transition and employability in a post-pandemic world of work. Our expert panel consists of three highly skilled professionals in the HR sphere Bev White, Carsten Sudhoff and Robin Richards. Each panellist brings a unique viewpoint to the discussion. Our very own chair of the CSG board, Cetti Galante, will facilitate the live webinar. We asked our panel a few questions prior the live webinar about HR trends and expectations for HR professionals over the next 6 – 12 months.
Join the live webinar at 16:00CET / 08:00PT / 11:00ET. To register click here.
The new normal is a term we hear often. Let’s talk about how HR departments around the world will have to adapt in this ‘new normal’.
The time has never been better for HR to take the much-desired seat at the table, by leading the upcoming seismic shifts in corporations. Whether it is digitalisation, workforce transformation or ensuring future skills (to name but a few) – HR has a unique opportunity to assume a pivotal role in the coming years. This will require a stronger understanding of business modelling, commercial drivers and a bigger risk appetite within HR.
Now, more than ever, where we meet less frequently in person and do our work with colleagues through zoom or similar, having a shared purpose is the golden thread that keeps us all connected. HR can support the business by supporting the communication of this. With clear line of sight of the overall purpose of the company and each employees roles means that everyone understands the impact of their work on the goals of the company. The recent open letter from blue chip global businesses stated their commitment to creating an economy where purpose is at its core. I expect this to be a rising rally cry.
There are two ying and yang principles of HR that need to be revisited for the new world. These are performance management and its sister, training to drive performance. With many staff working remotely, there is a move towards performance management systems based on high quality output achievement, rather than hours worked. Recent surveys have reported longer hours worked in this new way of working, but that doesn’t guarantee good work delivered. Whilst managing work performance in this new world there needs to be a review of current skills with commitment from employees and the business to put in place programmes to build new skills and sharpen up existing ones. The combination of performance management ‘new style‘ married with appropriate matching skills building programmes is an essential, not a nice to have, priority.
HR processes need to be reviewed and refreshed in the light of the new ‘work from anywhere’, which will include the protection of systems and data. Cyber-attacks have increased enormously since the pandemic where employees working away from the office can leave data and systems vulnerable.
There are numerous operational and philosophical changes required to effectively manage this “new normal”. This is the Golden Age of HR much like 1998 was the beginning of the golden age of technology departments.
There will be many operational changes including new approaches to interviews and offers. Potentially I see 90-120 day trials becoming the new norm as it is harder for both the candidate and the company employees to evaluate each other virtually and culture is more difficult to understand virtually. Further, the approach to annual reviews will fundamentally change.
New rules for supervisors need to be established with regard to their employee communication around tasks, tasks completed and outcome quality as well as general satisfaction with the job and their supervisor during the last quarter. Mitigation of these issues require things such as weekly and monthly reports to ensure effective review of work being done by supervisors. Employee touch targets and measurement of it will become central criteria for good supervisors. There are many more operational issues we can go into, but this is a good start.
All of the issues that were created with Covid also impact corporate philosophy and it is incumbent on HR executives to ensure that the CEO put forth a “new philosophy’’ with clarity and in writing to employees in areas such as working from home, employee supervision and team building.
There has been a sharp rise in organisational reliance on technology, how can HR departments use technology to their advantage?
Building technology savviness inside the team is a critical success factor for HR. As technology continues taking over many of the repetitive and administrative jobs, HR can redirect funds, people and time to supply truly value-adding services in the areas of talent development, transformation, advisory and more.
With the increasing democratisation of access to virtual skills building programmes and coaching services, it becomes practical and affordable for employees to be provided with tools to build and develop skills required to excel in this new world. At the same time, larger numbers of businesses are investing in companywide systems to increase work efficiency and track output performance. This means that reliable data can be deployed to really understand how employees are working whilst remote from the office.
This is a great opportunity for heads of HR and internal communications to have more impact on the company. Technology can help with finding or developing ways to remotely monitor employee/supervisor activity on a daily basis. Just think of the importance of this data to the strategic leadership team. Not only can you use this software to accurately evaluate work, but also you can begin to understand more about the employees habits and productivity, and how supervisors can support employees ongoing, and in which areas.
With good measurement software and good communication software, and a CEO that truly embraces and understands the new world, you can also recruit far beyond your normal recruitment geographies.
What are your expectations during the next 6-12 months in regards to career transition that HR professionals need to be aware of?
The current epidemic crisis has produced an accelerated acceptance of virtual interactions across many professional domains. It seems probable that this trend will continue in the outplacement industry. Consequently, while offering commercial opportunities this trend will drive the consolidation and digitalisation of the outplacement industry in the mid-term.
As companies around the world are impacted by the economic uncertainty, there is an increasing likelihood that many will need to restructure and lower their staffing costs. Accessing support for exiting employees in the form of accessible outplacement support helping people get quickly back into work whilst considering other career options and whilst continuing to earn money. In this new world, being practical and being able to pay bills and look after yourself and your family is a high priority in a market of higher unemployment. Finding the ‘ideal job’ or self-employment opportunities is more of a luxury in these times for many people. As easily accessible outplacement support is so affordable , HR can make this available to all levels of employee, providing practical advice and support at a time of stress and worry this is invaluable.
Covid has interrupted societal confidence of participating “in person”, gathering at a minimum, and created an uneasiness for most of us in meeting one on one with people we do not know. This will last an uncertain amount of time in us psychologically. Therefore, for the next six months minimum companies will need to have an engaging and professional multi-optional approach to coaching. The options need to be virtual and include phone, email, text, and video. I think it will be challenging to offer in person only coaching or cumbersome software that enables virtual. The career transition industry can help prepare candidates to address work from home preparedness and other current approaches so they are ready for the new world of work.
Thank you to each of our panellists for their insight. To hear more from our experts, sign up to our live webinar ‘Career Transition and Employability in the Post-pandemic World of Work’ on Tuesday 22nd September 2020 at 16:00CET / 08:00PT / 11:00ET by clicking here.