We never thought in a million years that our first post on LinkedIn would be in the midst of a worldwide pandemic.
We are forced to social distance ourselves by staying at home as much as possible. For the lucky few, working from home is a possibility. Many others are still operating in the front line and became heroes overnight. While others have lost their job or are temporarily unemployed. Public life is shut down, non essential businesses are closed, local economies are in free fall and governments are approving (financial) measures at lightspeed in order to keep people safe and trying to limit the economic impact at the same time.
It is without a doubt that the world will never look the same; we will have an era before and after Covid-19. The virus transformed the world. Will it also transform HR? We hope it will. Let us explain why.
The Covid-19 pandemic can probably teach us a lot of things. But one of the main lessons is the flexibility of humankind. Our lives changed overnight, and yet we adapted. Employees moved their office from work to home, and took everything they needed leaving offices empty. Employers are installing VPN, communication software, are pushing everything to the cloud and are becoming digital overnight. Meetings are held online like we have never done anything else before, and after work drinks are still on the (digital) agenda, not in the local pub around the corner but via video calls. Even corporate events are still being organised, pushing communication software to its limits when hundreds of people are participating in a quarantaine quiz.
HR was never the first in class when it came to digital transformation.
Now they are forced to become digital overnight in order to survive. If digital transformation was not on the HR agenda before the pandemic, it will definitely be afterwards. So what can Covid-19 teach HR?
- Employees can be productive working from home. Even in PJs. With children running around. Or working in the laundry room.
- Employers and employees can be flexible. It is about trust.
- HR can operate fully digital. Imagine the cost savings.
- Covid-19 forces everyone to be creative. Processes that took forever before, are all of a sudden no longer relevant or are executed way more efficiently. If Covid-19 is freeing up your agenda, take the time to reassess all the operational processes end to end.
- The way we operate and work today is the foundation of an agile organisation. Use this foundation to continue building after lockdown.
- Choosing the right technologies has never been more important than today. Make sure you select the right ones for your company and HR.
These ingredients are the drivers for business success. They are at the core of digital transformation and are now forced upon your organisation by Covid-19.
Recession will limit budgets, but may definitely not limit innovation. Start your digital journey wise and assess your current digital maturity level. Make sure you invest where most business value is created.