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10 Common Workplace Trends to Be Followed after Lockdown
25 September 2020
The onset of the pandemic has led to some sudden and drastic changes in workplace trends. Those involved in managing human resources across the world have had to re-think their strategies when it comes to managing employee experiences at work. HR will play a crucial role in boosting employee morale over these months as well as keeping their employees informed about relevant information like myths around coronavirus.
Though uncertain at first, the world has embraced the idea of remote-working, with many finding the practice to be far more conducive to a healthy work-life balance than the norm and far more efficient. It has cut down the time spent commuting to work and the idleness often seen in the office as employees stayed for hours beyond what they needed to actually complete their tasks. Companies have recognized this and have also understood that there are significant cost savings to be had by letting go of huge offices and the need to reimburse employees for travel costs. Thus, work-from-home and reduced commuting hours are here to stay as a new work-place trend.
Through the use of digital tools to monitor the hours an employee contributes to the company; HR management can create flexibility accordingly to maintain efficiency. As organisations shift to remote working, the competency of a team to work from their homes while communicating through a variety of digital platforms must also be tracked to keep efficiency at the highest level.
The pandemic has led to uncertainty. Many people have experienced pay-cuts and lost their jobs, the unemployment rate in India is at 8.4% according to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy* . Many organisations made drastic shifts in workplace trends by reducing contractor budgets. By increasingly engaging freelancers, organisations may create more flexibility within their existing workforce, which makes room for changes in the business mode
The employees have experienced stressful times over the last few months and an employer needs to play a more hands-on role to check in on their employees’ physical health, mental health and financial wellbeing. They can offer support in the form of sick leaves, flexibility in work hours due to increased domestic work, financial assistance if needed and even counselling if possible. A good way to show that an employer does care about the well-being of their employees would be by providing them with a health insurance policy specifically catered to Coronavirus such as a Corona Kavach Policy.
The pandemic has helped realise that there are certain core roles and individuals that help keep the workflow at maximum efficiency. However, this is not tied to designations, but rather to the core-skill sets of employees. Thus, offices are now focusing more on up-skilling employees and ensuring that their competencies accurately match the workflow needs of organizations to maintain efficiency and growth in today’s economic climate.
Work-from-home has bought a greater understanding of the balance between one’s work and one’s life. Companies and fellow employees now understand to a greater degree, the domestic pressures and responsibilities faced by each member of the organization. Thus, a new workplace trend has emerged, focused on being mindful of others’ responsibilities outside of work, and making room for unwinding after work.
Workplace trends that have always been appreciated is that of transparency between layers. A modern management communicates clearly and often with employees to discuss changes and implementation of new ideas.
Several studies have talked about the importance of and social distancing masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Originally, many offices prided themselves on open floors, however, now it will be important for employees to have their own spaces and maintain a distance from others when they are working from the office itself. The more an office space caters to the safety of their employees the more likely they are to curb the onset of symptoms of coronavirus among the same.
By streamlining the hierarchy and the roles in the organisation, the workflow is able to proceed in a smooth fashion. However, efficiency requires flexibility in order to make room for a sudden change. Training sessions should be conducted to create an environment that can be adopted at grassroots level. That way the absence of a single person does not hamper the functioning of the company as a whole.
Organisations have adapted to the pandemic with new workplace trends like finding opportunities for growth in secondary markets. This will lead to growth in a manner that is different from the planned path an organisation may have been to prior to COVID-19. This will prove to be beneficial in expanding on employee skills and the company by creating new careers.
Keeping in mind that the pandemic will not be something that disappears in a few months, these new workplace trends will have to be maintained for the long run. Each change must also be closely monitored for the reaction of the company and its employees and see if it is working for the betterment of the majority. The HR leaders that create enabling environments for their employees in these times will ensure that their company stands above their competitors.