Corporate HR chiefs into the spotlight due to COVID-19 pandemic
Human Resource departments across many countries have experienced one of the toughest and most testing phases for some considerable time. HR professionals have stood steadfast in coping and managing the unexpected COVID 19 pandemic. It would seem that HR professionals are constantly juggling hats; they must keep employees healthy, oversee a vast remote-working experiment, uphold morale and, as firms consider retrenchment, how and whether this exercise should be executed.
We see a lot of businesses undergoing changes from organisational restructuring,, salary reduction to conserve cashflow during this economic downturn, however, it is essential that the decision to make redundancies is a course of last resort. Employers that continue to value their staff and treat them justly, even under these unusual circumstances, are much more likely to retain the employees they need to bounce back when the crisis ends. Employee health, safety and well-being during this time is paramount.
Expeditious planning and execution become the norm and require HR’s to be proactive in protecting their employees, minimising risks through business continuity planning, remote-working, guidance on medical insurance, COVID 19 healthcare guidelines, IT-related issues and more, whilst judiciously balancing their existing workload.
Across the Globe, HR departments have worked with care and sensitivity to apply the following measures,
- Paid Leaves
- Short-term salary reduction
- Reduced working hours
- Permanent salary reduction
- Stress management therapy
- Paid sick leaves
- Catastrophe pay
This focus on employee’s wellbeing is especially vital, as many employees have experienced anxiety in dealing with this coronavirus pandemic.
Many HR functions remain optimistic and see oportunities in these trying times; reconfiguring company workflows, review of essential duties, what can be automated and what needs to be done allowing people to share the same space. The processes are being reviewed, improved and where possible automated.
At Re/think, we too have invoked our business continuity plan early to ensure staff can work from home, enable connectivity, safeguard measures for our employees as well as assisting our clients amidst the Covid-19 pandemic –
- Business Continuity Planning (BCP) – It defines and outlines the ability of a corporate organization to continue operating in the scenario of a natural disaster/calamity, war, cyber-attack and pandemic (example, the Coronavirus pandemic). It lays out a step by step guide to ensure that organisations have the ability to respond to a risk, swing to action and ensure that businesses recover quickly so that during the plan execution work functions are close to a normal day.
- Insurance Guidance – Employees are provided with the latest update from the Insurance provider and Network list near their area
- Tech support – Ensuring that each staff can work remotely, have conference calls and ensure business was as usual with the least interruption.
- Ensure backups are in place for incident response tasks, data, coordinate and enable a cohesive remote work atmosphere
- Assist staff with employee concerns, anxiety and stress issues and many more. The aim was to enable the organisations key personnel were operationally covered, ensure teams were split so that the secondary level of management could step in if the primary team were impacted.
- Educate employees on the signs and symptoms of coronavirus, modes of transmission and precautions to be taken
Precaution is better than cure is a useful maxim to live by! We have through our extensive measures ensured that our staff stay safe and work continues with minimum impact.
How can we help
Rethink as an outsourced Partner using the best practices, can assist in the set-up of a BCP plan for your organization. We are certain that the crisis will affect most businesses within the UAE and we are convinced that firms need to consider some immediate actions to make it through the next few weeks and months, which we will be able to assist you with as below,
- Cash flow forecasting and payment prioritization
- Employee structuring and salary strategy management
- HR & Communication support
- Strategic business opportunities
Who we are
Re/think is a boutique accounting, audit, HR advisory, regulatory compliance, and tax advisory firm with offices in Dubai, Abu Dhabi (ADGM) and Bahrain focused on providing businesses of varying sizes with timely, proactive, and customized business solutions from start-up and early development to the latest stages of a business lifecycle.
For further information and assistance with HR Services in UAE and Bahrain, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at +971 4 294 9203.