COVID-19 Challenges That Will Follow HR Leaders In 2021

Illumeo Customer Success's Profile

The pandemic of coronavirus illness (COVID-19) has had extraordinary consequences. The crisis has been tremendously disruptive, difficult, and ambiguous for leaders at the organizational level. Because the crisis is primarily a human one, human resource (HR) leaders play a critical role in allowing businesses to successfully manage through and exit the crisis.

HR executives throughout the world have reacted to the COVID-19 crisis in a variety of ways, resulting in today's workforce being completely transformed. However, many people found the move to a totally remote environment difficult, and it may still be difficult to manage. The need for new technology and resources grows as decision making leadership in human resource management continue to implement new strategies and procedures to their businesses. To remain ahead of the COVID-19 bend, HR and leadership must make the correct decisions and grasp the long-term impacts of these changes now more than ever.

Navigating the crisis will necessitate the capacity to manage conflict, as well as an understanding of the difficulties of harmonizing many viewpoints with few resources, especially when the organization's decision-making is impacted by constant change.

In the coming years, HR leaders will confront below major challenges.

Getting Ready to Work in a Hybrid Environment

As authorities prepare for a post-pandemic recovery, fresh debates erupt about what our new normal will entail, what plans and policies should be maintained, and how to respond to significant menaces. Transitioning to a hybrid-work approach, in particular, has been difficult since employees are confused about whether or not they want to return to the office.

According to SHRM's latest research, "Three days a week, 55 percent of workers prefer to work remotely, according to the poll. Meanwhile, 68 percent of U.S. CEOs believe employees should be in the office at least three days a week, expressing fears that a totally remote work model would jeopardize business culture."

While there may be a schism between the perspective of employees and management, firms must accommodate both. Here are a few things for top human resources leaders to consider:

  • Investing in improved virtual conferencing and HR technology.

  • Determining whether your staff prefer a specialized work environment.

  • Creating a safe and secure strategy for employees to return to work.

  • Team training to improve the virtual work experience.

Hidden Risks of Remote Working

The benefit of the remote work approach is that it allows you to work from anyplace. The remote approach presents the same challenge: work may be done from anywhere.

A survey conducted by Spencer Stuart and Kincentric,  found that virtual work went from 10% of employees on average before COVID-19 to 60% at the time of the survey. In the future, leading HR professionals anticipate that more than one-third of employees (34 percent) will continue to work digitally after the virus is ended. And, in certain firms, virtual employment may become the norm; around 10% of respondents expect their virtual workforce to grow considerably – from 20% or less virtual to more than 65%.

With so many workers working from "home," you may be unaware that your staff are working in another city, state, or country. This subjects enterprises and workers to the prospect of taxation and permanent establishment. While many jurisdictions have given this a pass in 2020, it is expected that enforcement will resume in coming year.

Coping With Burnout

Employee burnout has been a problem for many firms for decades, regardless of their size or activity. Burnout has become a major concern for leadership and human resource management departments throughout the world as more employees continue to work from home. "75 percent of workers have experienced burnout," according to a recent report by Flexjobs.com, "and 40% of those polled indicated it was a direct effect of the coronavirus outbreak." While burnout is unavoidable, top human resource leaders are devising innovative strategies to limit their employees' exposure to it.

Understanding how to encourage staff to take care of their physical and mental health while also keeping a healthy work-life balance was one of the most common issues top HR leaders expressed. They revealed that their staff was able to spot burnout but unable to deal since their coping technique was to go away from the business and take a week of vacation or spend time with family, all of which were once common go-to's.

Increased Turnover

Employee turnover may impact all types of firms when the economy returns to normal sooner or later. According to Human Resource Executive, "one in every four employees wants to leave as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic." This event alone can put many firms at danger, since it raises the stakes for retaining and attracting people.

Overall, HR executives should concentrate on:

  • Enhancing schedule and job flexibility

  • Attending to the requirements of workers

  • Taking charge of employee recognition programs

  • Making a succession plan

  • Accepting company culture

Many businesses began their digital transformation well before the COVID-19 to stay up with technological progress, worker demographics - altering tastes and interests, corporate goals & outdo competition, and so on. Pandemic has undoubtedly spurred digital adoption far quicker than expected. HRs primarily rely on digital tools to keep connected with their employees and for business continuity in the middle of all Covid-19 regulations, remote and hybrid work arrangements. 

With no other option, corporate executives and human resource professionals recognized the need of digital transformation and pushed their efforts to accelerate HR digital transformation in order to stay competitive.

Employees, in my perspective, also favor digitalization since it provides several benefits, as noted below:

  • Simplify the procedure.

  • Simple Access

  • Transparency

  • Their voice could be heard immediately by the leadership in HR management etc.

HR professionals, on the other hand, should use these platforms as enablers to assist their businesses' people, processes and practices.