The Landscape Of HR Looks Different
COVID-19 affected nearly every workplace function last year, and that influence will linger into 2021 and beyond. We are seeing that entire departments are being reimagined and reevaluated. Businesses will need to continually adapt quickly if they want to compete in this innovative landscape.
HR departments are given more and more responsibility each year, oftentimes with budgets that don’t match. This means HR teams must constantly seek ways to innovate and stay on top of trends if they want to compete in the marketplace, particularly amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
To that end, we have highlighted some HR trends to watch for in 2021. When reviewing them, employers should consider how their organizations may benefit by implementing similar strategies.
The COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed the perception of what qualifies as a “safe and healthy” work environment.
These days “safe and healthy” means something much different. In 2021, expect an increased focus on employee well-being. Baseline efforts will include safeguards against COVID-19, but many employers will likely go beyond illness prevention.
Already, some organizations have transitioned to a more holistic well-being approach. Efforts include mental health programs, dependent care assistance, and flexible scheduling. Focusing on these areas can lead to healthier, happier, and more productive employees in all departments.
While much of last year was defined by the COVID-19 pandemic, a significant portion was also devoted to stemming racial inequity. Months-long protests forced a national conversation about diversity in the workplace and beyond.
In 2021, notable efforts include consciously trying to diversify leadership, scrutinizing hiring processes to identify barriers to diversity, and developing training to foster greater cultural and racial inclusivity.
Expanded Remote Work For Some Departments
Many businesses were forced to shut down or migrate to remote work during the pandemic. Now, even with a vaccine in sight, a large number of those employers will likely continue offering remote work opportunities.
This suggests that some remote work, at least part-time, will remain for the foreseeable future. This won’t be feasible in all situations, but it might be for some positions. Doing so will not only provide a safeguard against COVID-19, but it can also serve as a tantalizing recruitment perk. Moreover, remote positions give employers greater hiring flexibility, allowing them to expand talent pools to any area with an internet connection.
Reimagined Onboarding Since COVID-19
Onboarding is yet another workplace facet that was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This critical process of hiring, training, and welcoming new employees into an organization is one of the most important functions of HR. What was once a series of carefully outlined in-person meetings has now changed.
For many, this means transitioning to an entirely new onboarding process, while maintaining the same level of quality. A platform such as MyHIRE® can offer this ease of use for the candidate as well as the employer. This platform can be used from job posting and application to the onboarding of crucial documents. Employers can even see the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) incentive for some hires. Implementing these processes now will better position HR teams in the event of another COVID-19 wave and shutdowns.
COVID-Related Paid Time Off (PTO)
The FFCRA provided paid sick leave through the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act for certain coronavirus related instances and extended paid leave for employees with children whose child care was shut down through the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act. These provisions are related to employers with less than 500 employees.
As of now, the FFCRA paid sick leave was not extended past December 31, 2020. However, it is anticipated states and municipalities may step in and enact regulations at their levels. Therefore, employers must stay vigilant to keep up to date on the FFCRA and state/local laws that address the coronavirus. Employers need to communicate relief that is available to employees through the federal government, state/local governments, and employer policies so they are fully aware of what is available to them. Good communication will alleviate stress and ensure there are no surprises for the employees. We suggest that employers should continually advise employees as to their options for continued leave, paid, or unpaid.
If you need more information or guidance on this topic or other HR information, or MyHRScreens® employee screening information contact us at 1-855-538-6947 Ext. 108 or visit www.myhrconcierge.com for more information and HR needs.