The past year and half posed some big challenges for businesses everywhere, changing the world of work forever.
Management in particular has taken a hit during the pandemic, as leaders had to quickly adapt to offering a higher degree of flexibility to their teams and find new ways to deal with remote management. Procedures, strategies and technologies have all had to mutate to make space for a new (and some may add, improved) way of working.
How have businesses changed during the Coronavirus pandemic?
The obvious result of the pandemic for businesses is the introduction of flexible working – or Working From Home. To keep up with the ever-changing business world, organisations have had to become more agile in their processes and strategies.
We can all remember the reluctance from a vast number of directors, leaders, and managers to allow their employees to work from home when the pandemic first came around. Looking back now, it seems odd to believe that flexible working didn’t seem like an obvious choice for all. From CEOs to line managers, organisational leaders had to let go of their fear of change and fully embrace a new way of working when the first lockdown was introduced.
It is now clear that the companies and businesses that were able to showcase greater agility in response to the need for a change are the ones who survived and, in fact, thrived during the pandemic.
As Warren Butler, marketing director for the Microsoft Gold Dynamics 365 Partner Preact, points out, the need for adaptation goes beyond simply complying with the lockdown rules and has more to do with employee satisfaction.
“We are proud to say that, when flexible working was first introduced, we were one of the very few companies to give our staff members the opportunity to choose how they wanted to work. This has resulted in increased productivity and an overall sense of satisfaction within the company (Preact)”.
But adapting to change is easier said than done. Having the right leadership is crucial to the successful implementation of a new way of working and keeping employees in the loop is just as important.
Leaders and managers who succeeded in that all have one thing in common: good communication skills. Having regular conversations with employees, either as a team or individually, can help answer a few common questions and inject a sense of control and security within the organisation.
Can HR help businesses manage organisational changes?
A huge part of the responsibility that comes with implementing a change falls onto the lap of the Human Resources department, who are in charge of making the transition as seamless as possible.
For it to be a successful shift to a new way of working, the change should be initiated and supported by the HR department, who are normally in charge of performing a variety of functions including communication, introduction, and implementation of any major changes.
Traditionally, the HR’s function is to act like the main point of contact between employees and management, often in charge of addressing any questions or concerns that may arise.
Some of the responsibilities of the HR department when managing organisational changes are:
Communicating changes and keeping employees informed
Assessing readiness and presenting potential impact before the change
Developing or delivering training and informational documents
When dealing with drastic changes, like transferring the entire workload across teams online, HR leaders have the responsibility to come up with a sustainable plan to be systematically introduced ahead of a major organisational change. The introduction of flexible working, for instance, has called for HR managers to quickly understand and implement team management systems like CRMs to streamline processes and make their teams’ lives a little easier.
While the world is slowly trying to return to some sort of “normality”, the world of work has been changed forever, and there are a few organisational changes that perhaps will actually stick. Businesses are now aware the power CRM systems like Microsoft Dynamics 365 hold, allowing their teams to work from anywhere without having to lose touch with the rest of the company and, most importantly, their mission.
By implementing a cloud-based system with an all-in-one platform, businesses and organisations can now manage their processes in a less convoluted way, ultimately improving their teams’ productivity.