Workforce strategies for a post-COVID-19 recovery
HR leaders, in particular, have been at the centre of their organisation’s rapid response to this crisis, and have been playing a central role in keeping the workforce engaged, productive and resilient. As progress is made against respond efforts, another reality is forming quickly. Now is the time for HR leaders to turn their attention toward recover, to ensure their organizations are prepared to thrive. This will require extraordinary focus and coordination, during what may be a protracted period.
We believe that workforce strategies in the recovery phase will be best orchestrated through five critical actions: reflect, recommit, re-engage, rethink, and reboot. These actions can help organisations to bridge the crisis response to the new normal by laying the foundation to thrive in the aftermath of the crisis.
Keeping these five critical actions front and centre, the Workforce strategies for a post-COVID-19 recovery: Workbook is intended to point HR leaders to areas that require attention, organized across work, workforce, and workplace dimensions.
This will not be a typical recovery: COVID-19 is unlikely to end suddenly given the lack of effective and available therapeutics and the uncertain prospects and timing of a vaccine. Organisations must plan for multiple scenarios and time horizons, as they shift from crisis response to recovery. They should also plan for the possibility of multiple waves of the pandemic and its continuing global – and uneven – footprint. For workforce strategies, organisations need to establish critical priorities for the next 12 to 24 months as they position themselves for new realities.
Much remains uncertain, but one thing is clear: customers, workers, suppliers and other partners are watching. How organizations handle the recovery will define their brands with both their workforce and their customers, establish their reputations for years to come, and determine their future competitiveness.
This workbook is intended for HR leaders to think through what is still needed now to manage business continuity, and what will be needed very soon as their organizations look for opportunities to reflect, recommit, re-engage, rethink, and reboot.
Note: The workbook is intended to be an activation framework for HR leadership teams and a starting point that should be adapted to each unique environment – not all of its questions will apply to every organisation. While comprehensive, this workbook is not intended to be exhaustive, nor is it meant as advice; it too will evolve as circumstances change.