Talent-Management Tips For the Post-Pandemic Future
Over the past years, technology has been invading organizations and completely remodeling the structure of the way they work and manage the human resource. From online conference video calls to using digital software to cloud-based connectivity available everywhere, and through executing a data-centric approach to strategic decision-making with the perfect partnership of human and artificial intelligence, a worker from centuries ago would surely be in awe at the current situation of the workplace as if they were in another world.
But it only took one stimulus to make this trend happen — the coronavirus pandemic. Because of this pandemic, the way most people work changed with the utilization of technology. Especially for people whose nature of work enables them to work remotely, the crisis has led most organizations to a shift of work method that allows for a more flexible time that blends work and home that many employees have wished for quite some time.
Technology has played a big role in maintaining productivity in companies during the lockdown. It provided tools for people to remain connected with one another. During the hard times, people left their physical workplace, some temporarily, but others could be forever, and management doesn’t disappoint. They still found various ways to keep the economy running and the workers working, not only because of the involvement of technology but also because of the human capacity to adapt to a new environment.
A study shows that workers who work without an office have a higher average working time of 10-20% than those confined in an office working on a strict schedule. They experience less stress and negative emotions, which leads to higher confidence and higher productivity.
Due to the physical isolation, communication with collaborators and workers skyrocketed, virtual meetings held by management happens more frequently, and the employees are now doing remote work. Some organizations can foresee that working from home could be done forever, and Twitter and Square have already announced that they would.
As we lead to the new normal, many now prefer and wish not to return to buildings’ confined spaces, especially if it’s solely for symbolic purposes. An analysis shows that workers want more remote work to attain a work-life balance and improve their well-being. As this pandemic marks the start of a new normal, people will surely be digital nomads and customized workforce.
If you’re a manager, take note of these five important trends as you build a flexible, hybrid workforce:
1. Technology is Strengthening Human Connectedness
All sorts of activities are now done through technology, including celebrating life events, attending ceremonies, visiting friends, education, and running a business. Technology gives us the platform to be “in the same space at the same time.” In fact, Microsoft has reported a 10% increase in social meetings during the past months, including virtual events called “pajama day” and “meet my pet day.”
The synergy of human and AI have also been proven to be effective in increasing productivity and producing better results compared to without. Tech companies are currently finding ways to improve and innovate these things for a better world. Although people often perceive AI as dehumanizing, it is already taking over many organizations, and the pandemic has made it even more vital.
2. Culture Within People
Every organization has a culture. It is how they do things around the company. The values, attitudes, preferences, and decisions make a company a unique world from anywhere. But how does one create culture? Culture is built not on the buildings’ corners nor the chairs and desk of the cubicles, but built within people.
People don’t have to sit together to build culture as it exists within them, and the pandemic has proven that to be true. To effectively manage talent, you must build cultures wherever your workers are, since people consider this as your unique character from other organizations.
Leaders can build cultures now by restraining from micromanaging, removing politics, and being objective to each employee. They should focus on learning what each member contributes to the company without biases but based on data. Most importantly, leaders should develop trust from their employees, and nurture their relationships with colleagues to successfully establish the company culture even in the virtual world.
3. Work That Supports Life
Next to health, maintaining flexibility is the second most important concern for workers. They would want to have more flexible time for work, working remotely a couple of days a week. Though the office still has a role in human connections, they want to balance work and home.
Other companies are trying to redesign their office layouts. Others are building hubs for space to collaborate and come together. Older generations hope to come back to the corners of the offices because they can socialize and learn in such places.
Younger generations also enjoy the workplace’s physical separation as it keeps work and homes a bit more distinct. But as the pandemic has shown that the status of the work environment is not fixed. Managers need to know that workers may still want to go to the office once in a while; a few may want to come every day. A good work schedule could benefit the company to provide its employees with work that supports life.
4. Screens as the Great Equalizer
With the absence of physical contact and technology as the only means to communicate, equity in the organizations improved drastically. Video calls have the same size of boxes, which serves as a great equalizer. It doesn’t show how high your position is in the company, but everyone is equally treated.
The current situation makes it harder to get involved in office politics and to show-off, especially in a video call with all of the employees watching. Another advantage of these video calls is the ability to capture and record the meetings and afterward analyze the data.
You can also evaluate the ideas and comments presented during the meeting without disregarding any important points. It is exceptional how the global health crisis has cleansed the toxic politics and favoritism that corrupts the righteous ways of leading talents in an organization.
5. Talent Geographically Unleashed
Before the pandemic has happened, when people are pursuing a job, they are most likely to relocate. They leave their hometowns and live geographically near the workplace. However, in recent years, we have seen different industries calling for skilled talents to work for them without the restrictions of where they live. Examples of this are software developers, who were the first to enforce this, followed by the banking industry, and consumer goods.
Technology crushed the idea that workers need to move where they want to work because employers can now see that people can work anywhere they are in the world as long they are connected to the Internet. Talented individuals equipped with skills can now be free from immigration policies, government restrictions, and location expectations to work in the company where they are qualified and their skills are valued. On the other hand, companies can now hire proficient, diverse workers, and improve their companies’ ratings.
Today, the workplace and workforce are now two different entities. Technology is taking humanity away from the offices and back into the comfort of homes. Organizations are building cultures outside the buildings, providing work that gives work-life balance, and employing talents globally.
As we hope for the end of the pandemic and strategically plan on workforce management, we can unleash new ways to manage the most important resource we have, which is labor, and provide a working environment that focuses on well-being, productivity, and equity. It is time to embrace the vast global talent available to give growth to the company regardless of where these people call home.
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