The coronavirus pandemic is nothing short of a landmark in human history. It has affected the entire planet and has brought whole countries to a standstill. So vast are the virus’s effects on society, its financial and emotional toll on the human populace cannot be calculated.
In the commercial sector, the virus’s effects on businesses have necessitated an unprecedented number of closures. According to one estimate, the unemployment rate in the United States in September alone was at 7.9 percent, or approximately 12.6 million jobless individuals throughout the country.
This combination of social restrictions and health threats have generated new challenges to experts on human capital management.
Below are some of the major hurdles developed by the coronavirus pandemic when it comes to managing human capital. Understanding them as well as investing in business intelligence solutions that address each, may help you overcome the challenges, benefitting your organization.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought to light how many businesses out there were unprepared for its effects. Crisis management teams suddenly became an essential part of businesses when they were largely noncommittal positions before. As a result of the unpreparedness, companies have been known to alter operations or even shutter at a moment’s notice, all the better to preserve themselves.
Employees won’t be able to focus on their work or be willing to remain employees of a company that can’t dispel their uncertainties. Especially if they feel their jobs or their benefits may be in doubt. The best way to calm down your workforce and ensure their continued hard work is clear communication. Make periodic announcements regarding the status of the business and confront any rumors flying about the employees directly.
Because of the coronavirus’s mode of transmission, working from crowded offices and forcing employees to use crowded public transportation has become unfashionable, to say the least. A few months into the pandemic, America saw a meteoric rise in work-from-home arrangements.
According to one study by Stanford University, as many as 42 percent of the country’s workforce was working from home at one point. This means companies have become reliant on teleconferencing and videoconferencing platforms. Communicating and managing your company’s workforce through these channels can be challenging.
Internet disruption, incompatible schedules, and other problems can make it difficult for human capital managers to do their jobs. The best way to do so will be to scale down efforts. Rather than have large group sessions over the internet, focus on one-on-one sessions with employees. These pose fewer connectivity problems and allows you to address their issues privately and directly.
Aside from their employment status or source of income, your company’s employees could be experiencing new levels of anxiety. Because of the environment created by the pandemic, people may be constantly fearful about their health, the well-being of friends and loves, or even the political situation in their community. So many causes of anxiety can lead to a steep toll on your employee’s mental health and affect their output.
Use your one-on-one sessions to ask about what’s worrying an employee. How are they feeling? Are they safe? You can use this conversation to determine if there’s something you or your organization can do to assuage their fears.
Just as there are multiple companies shedding employees, some companies are experiencing unparalleled growth. Thanks to the new possibilities opened by remote working options, companies may be hiring more workers without worrying about office space or increased overhead. The challenge comes from ensuring their hiring processes remain efficient during the pandemic.
Remote hiring procedures will rely heavily on videoconferencing. But it’s not as daunting as you might believe. All you have to do is appropriately translate your hiring procedures to a digital platform. Make your interview notes available as an online file for ease of access. Work with programmers or find suitable online skill exams for prospective new hires. With enough preparation, you can seamlessly integrate digital media and platforms into your hiring process.
Managing human capital is already a challenging experience even without the throes of a pandemic. Understanding the challenges brought on by the pandemic is key to ensuring your company and your employees make it through these uncertain times and beyond.