Managing employee relations for the next normal

Across geographies and industries, business leaders are grappling with new norms of operating as the remote workforce becomes the next normal. With the COVID-19 pandemic, many organizations have adapted rapidly to new ways of working and managing remote workers.   

In this context, new business priorities have emerged. Leadership has an onus to keep the workforce engaged, connected to central hubs and systems for business continuity, and minimized disruption while keeping employee welfare a top priority. Organizations must manage the needs of their employees from an HR, IT, and operational perspective during a time of heightened communication.

As COVID-19 restrictions shift and more businesses begin planning their journey to re-open, leadership must consider how it can support employee engagement — and a connected and safe workplace, during this time. 

Digital access for a connected workforce

Businesses are reimagining their operations for the new world, and this transformation begins from within, starting with a connected workforce that is empowered to create impact remotely. To effectively lead through this crisis, organizations must consider the ever-growing importance of digital capabilities to support internal operations.  

There is an opportunity for leaders to democratize digital access, from enabling secure connections to company systems with a VPN, to keeping remote employees connected to central hubs, resources, and to each other with communication and collaborative tools.   

Communicate to engage and empower your workforce

The safety and wellbeing of employees is a crucial priority for companies during a time of crisis, and it remains paramount on the journey to reopening businesses. Leaders need to consider the content, frequency, and channels of communication they leverage to keep employees feeling connected, supported, and safe. 

Open and transparent communication helps set expectations about navigating the new workplace environment. To deliver this communication with frequency at scale, companies can evaluate new modes of connecting with employees — from leveraging video conferencing platforms for town-hall-style meetings, to setting up dedicated channels to deliver frequent updates on company-wide messaging platforms. At MuleSoft, we’ve turned to our instant messaging platform to foster a culture of transparency, providing updates on modified priorities so that teams can quickly pivot and adapt. 

As social distancing guidelines continue, organizations will need to support communication by enabling new tools and digital capabilities to meet the evolving needs of the remote workforce.   

Build future-proof foundations with integration

As the needs of workforces change, companies must adapt rapidly to meet these needs with new approaches to communication and digital capabilities. The rapid shift to remote workforces requires innovation to keep the pace of our digital world, keeping employees engaged and connected to central hubs, collaboration tools, and remote-office capabilities that allow them to be productive and connected. Yet, many companies are facing challenges in meeting the demand for new technology investments: nearly two-thirds of ITDMs find it difficult to introduce new technologies because of their IT infrastructures. 

The immediate demand for digital capabilities creates the opportunity to prioritize an API-led approach to integration in new projects, accelerating productivity and the speed of innovation. Instead of waiting on a top-down mandate to API-led connectivity, organizations can accelerate digital transformation in the near-term by prioritizing reuse in their projects during this time. By leveraging API strategies that promote reuse, organizations can solve for their most immediate needs, such as connecting HR systems to boost employee experience, while benefiting future projects with those APIs. 

These strategic investments in integration to support digital capabilities in the near-term will help organizations become more resilient and efficient as they adapt to meet employee needs. In the long-term, strategic investments in integration will contribute to competitive advantage as organizations plan for more sustainable futures built on future-proof foundations. 

For more insight on getting back to work safely, visit Work.com and our COVID-19 Resource Hub.



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