Posted on: 18 February 2021
What changes will come to HR in the upcoming year?
COVID-19 has caused widespread changes to businesses in the UK, but HR has been one element that has been at the forefront of how businesses operate to keep COVID-19 infections at bay.
Workplaces are already a far cry from what they were before the pandemic gripped the UK, but can we expect further changes to come in terms of workplace policies and procedures? Take a look at some of the ways HR professionals may influence business practices in the upcoming year.
How will HR change in 2021?
Although the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is well underway, there is still a threat to those who aren’t deemed as vulnerable and could be waiting months to get their vaccine. HR professionals will need to be working to keep these people safe, whilst also helping their businesses remain profitable. Here are some of the trends that we think HR professionals will need to adopt to keep this balance.
COVID-19 related work closures and the furlough scheme has caused high levels of anxiety for workers, so a transparent culture has become necessary to keep morale high.
This is something that will need to be maintained as the pandemic continues to affect businesses, so employers should continue to be as open and honest with staff as possible, even if it isn’t good news.
One of the main things that people have missed during the pandemic is being able to see the people they spent most of their days with. This has particularly affected those working in remote roles.
HR professionals can work to try to get workers to spend more time together through virtual means. Some of the ways of keeping teams connected are fun initiatives, more collaborative projects or virtual events.
The Equality Act of 2010 prevents employers from employing staff purely based on gender, ethnicity, religion, age or sexual orientation, but employers shouldn’t just be recruiting to tick a box.
Having an inclusive workplace has been found to increase staff retention, minimising turnover costs, so instead of just recruiting a diverse workforce, celebrate diversity in your workplace.
The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t just affected businesses, it has affected almost every aspect of how we live our lives, which has caused widespread mental health problems.
Wellbeing will be a huge part of keeping your workforce happy and healthy in the workplace. Some of the ways you can help employee wellbeing include flexible working arrangements, encouraging communication between all members of staff, investing in wellbeing support and providing guidance on mindfulness.
It isn’t just your staff working hours that you can keep flexible, you can also work to ensure that your business can adapt quickly to any changes, whether they are COVID-19 related or not.
HR professionals should be able to quickly review information, and quickly introduce changes into a business to be up to date with guidance on keeping staff safe and healthy. This will ensure that employees have a clear idea of operations and can continue to be productive.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the biggest hit to the global economy that the world has ever seen, so financial incentives may not be as suitable for businesses as they once were.
However bonuses, raises, rewards and other incentives can help to keep staff motivated, and simply taking them away will likely demolish the morale of your employees. It is therefore up to HR to think of some cost-effective reward ideas that will allow employees to receive a reward without putting pressure on the business’ finances.
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