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With Coronavirus confining your workforce to their homes, management by walking around is no longer an option. But while your team may be working away from the office, your leadership and people skills may be more important than ever before as you guide your organization through these trying times. If you are unused to managing a remote workforce, you may want to alter your style to accommodate your most important asset.
In the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there’s a good chance you have been assigned to work from home. If you’re not used to performing your job remotely, it can seem a daunting proposition. Blocking distractions, staying motivated, maintaining lines of communication, even knowing when to knock off for the day are all real challenges for work-from-home neophytes. Fortunately, a significant portion of the employment universe has blazed a trail through the remote-work wilderness. Freelancers, contractors, consultants, and other contingent workers know how to deal with the hurdles associated with non-traditional work. You can learn from their processes, tricks, and hacks that help them take advantage of all the benefits working from home offers.
As the business community comes to grips with Coronavirus (COVID-19), they are altering the way work gets done. Your company probably has implemented hygiene standards throughout your operations and expanded work-from-home functionality for as many staff members as possible so workers can practice crucial social distancing. Your people’s health is the top priority. But while containing the spread of the virus and exhibiting compassion for those affected, firms still must maintain supply chains, deliver outputs, and service their customers.
Today, every industry is seeing the impact of digitization. M&A and consolidation are increasing, innovative disruptors are raising more venture capital than ever before and each internal function in large enterprises is strategizing on how to embrace and incorporate technology. One of the most exciting areas for technology application — and often one of the less discussed areas of core competitive advantage — is the procurement office. Digital transformation of the supply chain increasingly has implications for reducing third-party risk, increasing corporate compliance and building a more inclusive and diverse collection of business partners.
As the nature of work evolves, businesses struggle to transform. They face an existential challenge as digitization continues alter the way people work, how labor and jobs are defined, and how workers are recruited and employed.
With the United States flirting with full employment, many cutting-edge companies are turning to consultants, freelancers, and other contingent workers to meet the skills shortages they face. Employing a significant percentage of non-employee workers can build in the flexibility and scalability that companies need in order to compete in today’s competitive environment. Using non-traditional workers and building a pool of outside talent gives your company a jumpstart when you need to quickly increase production, launch a new product, create a new marketing plan, write custom software, or complete any other project that requires specialized skills.
Companies are forced to toe a fine line when trying to motivate their contingent workforces. On one side, labor laws prohibit organizations from treating freelancers and independent contractors the same way they treat salaried and hourly full-time workers when it comes to benefits, payment, and control over how the work gets done. On the other side, psychologists and human resources professionals advise firms to do everything in their power to make contingent workers feel welcome and part of the team by erasing the distinction between internal and external workers.
The convergence of interactive talent engagement tools with a shift in worker mindset has created opportunities for companies to acquire critical project skills more easily and expeditiously. As the preference for on-demand talent spreads across industries, companies must adjust to the new workforce paradigm or be trampled on the battlefield for workers possessing the specialized skills needed to survive the competitive business climate.
Talent for project management, technical development, and creative problem-solving is more difficult to find than ever before. Fewer and fewer skilled professionals are opting for long-term, full-time employment, so traditional hiring practices cannot fill organizations’ personnel needs. But filling the talent gap with contingent workers brings its own risks and shortcomings. Only by adopting a total talent management program can companies put themselves in optimal position to locate, hire, manage, evaluate, and lock in the people who possess key abilities and knowledge.
If your New Year’s resolutions include a promise to institute or more effectively manage your contingent workforce, congratulations! You are on your way to a total talent program that can reduce risk, cut labor costs, and position your organization to respond adroitly to market shifts and industry challenges.