What Does “Post-Covid” Look Like for HR Professionals?

Monica Lochrie

Getting on a flight to an exotic location; throwing your hands in the air at a packed concert venue; attending a big celebration. These are just some of the things that so many of us are looking forward to in the “post-Covid world”. With different areas of the country enjoying easing restrictions, that creeping sense of normality reminds us of the world we had (and, perhaps, took for granted) prior to March 2020.

But what does the “post-Covid world” look like for HR professionals, many of whom have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to advise on everything from furlough to health and safety procedures?

What are the challenges – and opportunities – that lie ahead? Here are some thoughts …

Business re-structuring

If the business you work in hasn’t already seen some sort of re-structure (through furlough or redundancy), now may well be the time for such an undertaking. As business continue to strive to recoup revenue and make up for “lost time”, many will look to restructure their current model. So, this could mean being involved in hiring processes or, conversely, in redundancy conversations.

More entry level opportunity

Owing to the sheer volume of work that HR have had to do in the past year, simply to keep business up to date with various Covid requirements, many of the normal day-to-day jobs have fallen by the wayside. This could mean a bigger demand for temporary contracts or more opportunities for entry level professionals to come in and pick up projects or admin work. So, if you’re a recent graduate or looking for contract work, now could be the best time to secure that role.

Catching up on projects

Perhaps you were about to implement a new IT system or an online payroll portal before Covid struck … Is now the time to look at re-visiting these projects? If your business is in a position to make changes and spend money, there could be a lot of project work in the pipeline for HR professionals. It could also be a good time to re-visit training modules with employees and look at opportunities for professional development.

From firefighting to adding value

The past fourteen months or so has purely been about stopping disasters. Whether that’s ensuring furlough paperwork is filed or implementing new health and safety standards, everything has been so reactive. Well, now is the time for HR professionals to be proactive and begin to add value to the wider business. Whether that is through project work, training or simply offering mental health and wellbeing support, now is the time for HR professionals to demonstrate their knowledge and skills.

Boosting morale

Employees have taken a battering over the past year. Remote working has meant missing out on everyday chat and some have even seen their colleagues face redundancy. Even if your company is bouncing back, morale could still be in need of a boost. It’s important that HR professionals think about ways to re-engage their employees and implement meaningful changes in order to support those returning to work.

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