The future of HR in the face of COVID-19

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The future of HR in the face of COVID-19

Six key questions HR will need to ask itself

In the coming period, we will launch a blog series in which we will dive into the different priorities, key questions and accompanying solutions for HR in response to the COVID-19 crisis. The series explores the ways how HR can reimagine its own future and consequently the future of the business/enterprise to thrive again in the post COVID-19.

The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented crisis with severe economic consequences. Nobody knows how long the crisis will last and what the ‘new normal’ will look like. Organizations are investigating whether the ways of operating that have served them well in the past, will be fit for the future. HR is uniquely positioned to lead enterprises to recover and thrive in the new world of work, playing a vital leadership role in shaping the way enterprises recruit and develop talent, and take care of experiences, and break away from traditional operating models, to achieve work outcomes.

At the beginning HR has played a crucial role in managing the COVID-19 response at an organizational level. HR has been the driving force in keeping the workforce and organization engaged, productive and resilient. This situation has illustrated the true value of HR and has proven the importance of investing in flexible and robust HR processes and structures. As shocking as the COVID-19 crisis is, it also introduces a rare opportunity for HR to rebuild and take the lead in driving organizational stability and strength. Now that we are past the respond phase, HR needs to materialize on this opportunity: the time has come for HR to reimagine not only its own future, but also the future of the business/enterprise (see here for the full story around the Future of work: Redefining work, workforces, and workplaces).

In this blog we explore how HR can become more resilient, by addressing some of the most important questions that are likely to come your way in the near future.

Navigating the future of HR to address today’s challenges

Through various client conversations we have identified six key priorities along the lines of the concepts mentioned above. For each of these priorities we have formulated a set of questions we believe HR organizations should be asking themselves to answer the emerged business challenges. The answers to these questions will help HR to redefine its strategy and set the direction to thrive in the aftermath of the pandemic.

 

How should CHROs and their teams identify where to start?

In the coming period, we will launch a blog series which will dive into the different priorities, key questions and accompanying solutions we have outlined above. The series will explore the ways how HR can reimagine its own future and consequently the future of the business/enterprise to thrive again in the post COVID-19 world and can subsequently contribute to achieving business successes in the new normal.

The current situation has given HR a unique opportunity to co-lead their enterprises in becoming more robust and resilient to overcome the economic and cultural ramifications of COVID–19. Organizations may be tempted to dismiss the need for change, hoping that the eventual recovery will be a return to the recent past. It will not be. Organizations that return to their old ways of working can expect to find that their competitors have taken advantage of the recovery to re-imagine their workforce and business, positioning themselves to thrive in the future. HR needs to act now.

Blog 1 of the blog series: Becoming a financial resilient HR organization

The starting point of this blog series focuses on developing a financially resilient HR organization: While organizations often turn to HR to save costs through workforce management, during this time of crisis there is also untapped potential to save costs within the HR function itself. Please click on the button on the right to read this blog. To learn more about HR's role in helping the business to reduce workforce costs, please visit our Human Capital Balance Sheet blog post here.

Blog 1: Becoming a financial resilient HR organization

Read blog 1 here

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Blog 2: Accelerating Digital HR during- and post COVID-19

The impact of COVID-19 has triggered an acceleration of Digital HR, as new ways of working forced organizations to tap into their technologies and pushed creative ways of leveraging them. Explore how your organization can strengthen the digital base of HR and unleash the true power of HR Technology.

Blog 2: Accelerating Digital HR during- and post COVID-19

Read blog 2 here

Blog 3: HR process improvements: Where and how to prioritize

In the third blog we highlight the importance of investing in process optimization as a key success factor in the journey towards becoming a more resilient HR organization. In light of the likelihood of budget and resource limitations we introduce an approach to realize quick impact on the business. The ‘HR process Health check’ enables HR to (1) identify current pain points (2) define and prioritize improvement opportunities and (3) design a solution prototype within two weeks. Rather than focusing on the full process scope of HR, the health check singles out one (sub-) process where the challenges and/or impact are the greatest.

Blog 3: HR process improvements: Where and how to prioritize

Read blog 3 here

Blog 4: Agility within the HR organization: Fast to Action

In a world where alignment to work and the workforce is needed more than ever, traditional functional alignment is something that we believe should be reconsidered. Where should you start with improving the agility of your HR organization?

Blog 4: Agility within the HR organization: Fast to Action

Read blog 4 here
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