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How to Give Performance Appraisals That Inspire Employees to Grow

Many managers know the importance of giving performance appraisals but also find it a challenging task to accomplish. It can be difficult to be objective and constructive when critiquing someone’s position and responsibilities. Not only that: performance reviews have a big impact on motivation, and getting them wrong can be costly. 

Research shows that only 10.4% of employees whose manager’s feedback left them with negative feelings feel engaged at work. Four out of five began looking for a new job as a result. 

The goal of a performance appraisal should always be to help the employee improve as well as acknowledge their value to the company. With that in mind, here are some tips for giving appraisals that inspire employees to grow.

Why are performance appraisals necessary?

First of all—what is a performance appraisal?

Performance appraisals are a formal way of evaluating an employee’s work. They usually take the form of a meeting in which the employee and manager discuss the employee’s strengths and weaknesses and come up with a plan for how the employee can improve.

Performance appraisals are important because they provide feedback that allows employees to understand how they’re doing and where they need to grow in their position. They also help to establish a baseline against which future performance can be measured.

Performance appraisals are also great for boosting motivation because they provide a roadmap for growth in a role. Workers feel motivated when their progress is recognized, and when they feel their role within the organization has growth potential. Nobody likes to feel stuck. Quite often, an employee that seems lazy is just unmotivated—and that’s something you can fix.

employee performance evaluation

How to Give Performance Appraisals That Inspire Employees to Grow

Here are some actionable tips to help you provide feedback that will guide and motivate your employees

1. Start by setting the right tone

The way you approach a performance appraisal can make all the difference in terms of how the employee perceives it. If you go into the meeting with a critical attitude, the employee is likely to feel defensive and may not be willing to listen to your feedback and even hesitate to openly communicate.

On the other hand, if you start the meeting by praising the employee’s strengths, they’re more likely to be receptive to what you have to say. Frame the appraisal as an opportunity for growth, rather than a critique, and the employee will likely be more motivated to listen.

A positive reinforcement model can be used to spur employee growth. This means praising the employee for any steps they take towards improvement, even the small achievements.

2. Focus on personal growth over the business goals

While it’s important to discuss the employee’s role in relation to the business goals, remember that this is a personal growth opportunity for them. Help the employee to see how they can improve their skills and contribute more effectively to the team. 

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t talk about the business at all; their personal goals should be given context. Also, help them to see their importance in the bigger picture—while letting the employee know that you are invested in their personal development.

3. Set expectations early on

It’s important to set expectations early on in the appraisal process. This means discussing what is expected of the employee during the meeting, and what you hope they’ll walk away with.

This also gives the employee a chance to prepare for the meeting so they can provide their input regarding how to improve.

4. Offer constructive and actionable feedback

One of the most important aspects of a performance appraisal is giving constructive feedback. This means providing feedback that is specific, actionable, and goal-oriented, rather than general comments like “you need to work harder.”

Make sure your feedback is relevant to the employee’s goals, and help them to see how they can improve their skills in the future.

Hearing critical feedback is always hard—but if you frame it positively and include a path forward for the employee, they’ll come away feeling motivated, rather than disheartened.

Delivering negative feedback can be difficult, but it’s important to do it in a way that inspires employees to grow. Here are a few tips:

  • Before giving any negative feedback, first praise the employee’s strengths
  • Don’t dwell too much on the past
  • Offer a positive to every negative

One of the best ways to give helpful feedback is to make sure that it’s relevant to the employee’s goals. Help them to see how their current skills can help them reach their goals, and provide concrete improvement steps.

When giving feedback, use the SMART framework—an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound.

smart business model to guide goals infographic

This makes it easier for the employee to get their head around what’s expected of them. It also provides them with a roadmap to get there, which helps to keep them motivated.

Using the SMART framework, you can easily track employee progress and if they are headed towards their goals.

5. Make negative feedback specific

When critiquing someone’s work, it’s important to be specific. Rather than saying “You need to work on your communication skills,” give examples of specific incidents where the employee could have communicated better.

This will help to paint a clear picture so the employee fully understands how to do their job better.

Here are two examples of highly specific feedback

– “This is the first time I’ve noticed you checking your phone during meetings. Is there anything going on in your personal life that requires your attention?”

– “In a team meeting, you addressed only one aspect of what someone said. Could you make sure to cover all sides? Here’s a way to do this that I find helpful…”

6. Work with relevant employee data

Using data can help to back up your feedback and provide the employee with concrete evidence of where they need to improve. Make sure your data is accurate—no one wants to be judged unfairly.

If you have access to relevant employee data, it can be helpful to use it during a performance appraisal. This could include things like their attendance record or how they’ve performed in relation to specific goals. Thankfully, there are tools available that can help to make the process of data collection and analysis easier.

Employee management tools and time-tracking platforms provide invaluable performance data that can be used in appraisals. It can also be used to assign tasks and track metrics—something that’ll come in extra handy the next time appraisal time rolls around.

Giving a performance appraisal does not have to be stressful, for you or your employees. When giving one, keep the above tips in mind to help ensure your performance appraisals are successful and inspire employees to grow.

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The Value Of A Software Support Team That “Gets” You

Your work is incredibly personal to you. Taking on the task of being your own boss doesn’t come without a personal, emotional, and absolute commitment to the work that you do.

You enjoy the challenge of taking things head-on. You and your employees have found ways to conjure up solutions where others have remained stuck in neutral. You take pride not just in the hard work you’ve done, but the “smart work,” too. 

When it comes to software—and technology in general—every business owner has a differing level of expertise. Some have been at the forefront of integration, others have stuck with older, seemingly tried-and-true methods. No matter where you land on that spectrum, two things are true:

  • The need for total technological immersion of your business grows larger every day. 
  • The software—and the software support specialists—helping to run your business need to work for you.

Not every step this process will be pain-free. There will be plenty of hiccups, blips, and glitches. But hey, that’s nothing new for someone who started their business from the ground up. Just as you’re there for your employees and their needs, you need a software support team that will be there for you and your business every step of the way.

Your Business Is Unique

At the root of high quality customer service is one basic principle: understanding. The support specialists you turn to need to have an intimate understanding of how your business runs. Remember, they are there to serve your needs.

Take this as an example of good customer service: the company you hire delivers a software package as promised. It seems to be functioning as expected. There’s instruction manuals, FAQs, and a 1-800 number to call in case—or, more likely, when—things go haywire. As you’re getting acclimated to the interface, you experience some minor difficulties with a specific functionality.

When you call the support hotline, you’re placed in a queue. When your turn arrives, you don’t speak to anyone you’ve been in contact with before. This person doesn’t necessarily seem like a software support specialist. You’re left with being told that your issue is being processed and that it will be resolved in a “timely manner.”

A couple of days go by, and you get a call from someone doing their best to help. You explain the issue yet again, and they were able to direct you to a solution that left you thinking “Well, that issue wasn’t too hard to fix. It would have done my business a lot of good to have that handled a few days ago. If someone showed me how, I probably could’ve done that myself.”

At the end of the day, you received good service. The issue was fixed, and life goes on. But is good service the standard you’re setting for your business? What happens when the issue is especially time sensitive, or if the issue is severe enough to result in lost revenue? Or both? Businesses like yours are facing more turbulent times than ever before. To navigate through the sea of uncertainty in 2020 and beyond, your business needs great service from top software support teams that you can rely on day in and day out. 

The Hallmarks of Great Customer Service

Software Supports Teams Catering To You

Now more than ever, a personal touch in the business world goes a long way. With so many businesses and families reeling in the wake of this period of economic turmoil, people are turning their attention—and wallets—towards companies that “get them.” In fact, 56% of customers stay loyal to brands that “get them.” 

What does it mean when a business “gets” you? Though the criteria is different for each business and each customer, personalized service is the key.

Smart businesses understand that each customer is unique in their demands and expectations, and will go above and beyond to ensure that each customer is satisfied in their own way. Your product functioning as promised is just the bare minimum, and only the beginning of the relationship. Brands that truly want to retain their customers will do their best to meet their human needs.

Personal Connection

In a study conducted by Forbes, 86% of customers say an emotional connection with a customer service agent would make them continue to do business with the company. This level of loyalty without mention of the product or service offered should underscore the value of quality customer service. For small business tech support services, this level of intimacy is vital.

One way to establish this connection is to be proactive in troubleshooting. Conventional wisdom might tell us that it wouldn’t be wise to alert the customer to a problem or flaw that they may not have known existed. But at the end of the day, transparency, compassion, and genuine commitment to delivering the best product and service reigns supreme. Having a live chat support software will enable real time communication and problem solving.

A Symbiotic Relationship

If you’re a hardened skeptic that believes benevolence doesn’t come without dollar signs attached, you wouldn’t be entirely wrong. It is without a doubt in a businesses best interest—especially in the CRM software support industry—to retain your business. Acquiring a new customer is five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one. This is what we like to call a “win-win.” Your business not only receives a good product, but an empathetic and helping hand every step of the way. 

Invest In People

Just as you place a premium on the value of teamwork and collaboration within your business, the organization behind the software you deploy should share the same ethos in its practices. 

The best thing that you can do for your business is to enlist the help of people who will make your business better—simple as that. Do your research into the people behind the software you’re purchasing. If you invest in the best remote tech support software backed by a team of dedicated, empathetic, and talented people that will unconditionally support you and your staff, your business will be prepared for anything. 

When Employees and Customers Don’t Want to Wear Masks

Polarization has become par for the course in the United States. It spreads across all facets of everyday life: social media, sports, politics, social justice, news, and even the virus itself. Very few aspects of our culture have been immune to the tidal wave of immoderation. 

family with masks safety that uses all in one business management software

Every business owner in America—and, for that matter, the world—has aggressively pivoted towards a safety-centric business model. While the health of your employees and patrons has been at the forefront of your agenda, your business stillhas a responsibility to maintain fiscal health, too. This requires (almost) never turning away a paying customer. 

With each American business confronting various degrees of noncompliance, disobedience, and outright irresponsible behavior from patrons—and sometimes employees—in regards to public health, business owners have been put squarely in the center of an unprecedented predicament without an obvious solution.

How do you assure your customers, employees, and even your own family that you are acting in the best interests of public health without completely alienating those with antithetical beliefs? Customers with whom you share fundamentally different ideologies are still your customers, and the same goes for your employees.

Health Comes First

When it comes down to it, your business’s commitment to upholding health and safety regulations is priority number one. Creating and maintaining an environment that is diligent in upholding safety protocols starts with you, but it takes a team to make sure nothing slips through the cracks. Your employees can not afford to take a passive approach to combating COVID-19. In a survey done by Accenture, 82% of consumers were fearful for the health of others, as opposed to 64% that were fearful for their own health.

While brick-and-mortar establishments have the benefit of being able to heavily enforce safety rules and regulations, businesses that offer—or are exclusively limited to—field services have been forced to toe the line of overstepping boundaries. Your employees are required to wear masks when in a customer’s home, and you’ve required that customers reciprocate. But what happens when a customer does not oblige? 

After all, they’re in their own home. Does your employee feel obligated to continue servicing the customer, or have you afforded them the autonomy to refuse service? What happens when it’s not the customer, but your own employee ignoring protocols? While each customer and employee is unique in their methods and beliefs, your job is to lay out the ground rules for deeming what is acceptable while on the clock.  

Everyone has differing opinions on what they think is the “right thing” to do is right now. Disagreements will occur—it’s natural. But by doing our best to occasionally take a walk in someone else’s shoes, we can work together towards the common goal of safety. Including empathy in the core philosophy of your business plan isn’t just a suggestion anymore—it is imperative for you and your employees alike to understand that.

Remain Calm in Conflict

Everyone is subject to moments where stress gets the best of us—it’s a part of being human. Whether you have worked directly with customers or have simply been a bystander in a shopping centre, most people have encountered an unruly customer at some point. Before COVID, it was simply an annoyance. Customers—fairly or unfairly—would seemingly lose the ability to use their “inside voice” while hurling insults and vulgarity. Annoying, yes, but most likely not dangerous.

In today’s world, the routine rudeness towards those in customer service positions has escalated. With these professionals often tasked with policing the health and safety measures of their business, they are subject to the backlash coming from those who don’t feel as though public safety measures apply to them. The backlash becomes magnified when your employees have to police this behavior while in the confines of your customer’s home. 

Don’t forget—just because your employees are in charge of enforcing health and safety regulations does not mean they are perfect actors themselves. Be aware and in control of your employees behavior. Their nonchalance about mask-wearing will foster an unsafe environment, and it facilitates further unsafe behavior from the customers who are following their lead. It is up to you to ensure your employees are setting a good example.

This is all uncharted territory. Before 2020, the customer was always right, no matter what. But what happens when the customer is threatening the health of those around them rather than simply being argumentative about returning a pair of shoes? What happens when it’s your trusted employee of 10 years that is neglecting safety protocols?

  • Be empathetic. Most people that are lashing out at you about safety protocols are handling their own frustrations and anxieties about the pandemic in a poor fashion. Oftentimes, they just want to feel heard. Reiterate that you value their business—or their contributions to your business—and simply want them to take part in safety measures for the betterment of everyone. Even when you don’t agree, express understanding.
  • Keep Things Professional. While it is important to be assertive and firm, communicate in a manner that doesn’t resort to raised voices, personal insults, or otherwise unprofessional behavior. Sometimes, people are just seeking conflict for conflict’s sake—don’t indulge them.
  • Work As A Team. As the owner or primary authority on staff, it may be in your best interest to step in during a confrontation with an unruly customer. While your employees should always be encouraged to ask for help, they may be less likely to do so in a situation like this. 

    Give your employees room to resolve the conflict themselves, but if the customer continues to unreasonably escalate the situation, it’s time for you to step in. If there is a scenario where a customer is attempting to hold an employee accountable to following safety standards, take time to pull them aside, address the issue, and reiterate what they can do better next time.
men shaking hands talking about all in one business management software
  • Offer Solutions. During an altercation, it doesn’t always seem possible to find a reasonable solution. But when you’re able to focus the attention on the future rather than the initial problem, people are more likely to participate in the de-escalation process. Whether it’s providing a free mask or offering personalized attention, find ways to progress the conversation. 
  • It’s Their Home, But It’s Your Health. If your business offers field services, your employees may feel a bit uncomfortable enforcing rules in someone’s home. It is important that you address this with both your employee and the customer in advance—laying out the ground rules will remove the ambiguity and awkwardness.

    Your employees and customers need to know when, and if, it is acceptable to refuse service. If your customer reports unsafe employee behavior, take immediate steps to confront that employee so that further issues do not arise.  
  • Know When To Draw The Line. Just because you do everything right doesn’t always mean the other person will follow suit. If someone is endangering the health of you, your staff, and other customers, it may be time to remove them from the premises. This is a last resort saved for only the worst of the worst offenders. That being said, it’s important to know when this option must be utilized.

    While you’ll tolerate some heated vocabulary and minor non-safety related rule violations, the line is crossed when this person repeatedly refuses to wear a mask, social distance, or otherwise not follow public safety protocols.

Put The Situation In Perspective

It can be easy to let personal sentiments trickle into your professional life—especially when it relates to dealing with particularly difficult customers. The manner in which your employees respond to these challenges begins with you. As a business owner, your job is to cultivate an atmosphere that upholds a professional standard of service to every customer regardless of any personal disagreements that may exist. That being said, it is also important that you teach your employees where “the line” is, and what to do when a customer crosses it.

It can be awkward—at the very least—to address these issues with an uncooperative employee as opposed to a customer. Regardless if you’ve known them for 20 years or 2 months, they are people capable of spreading COVID-19 just like you and me. No one is exempt from the responsibility of maintaining public health, and it’s your job to have those uncomfortable conversations to ensure this stays true. 

In our increasingly polarized world, we encounter many people whose words leave us with nothing but an exasperated “Really? C’mon.” Being the bigger person is hard. But when your business—and public health—is at stake, being the bigger person is the only option there is.

Data Security Just Became Everyone’s Job

Gone are the days when your tech support team was just down the hall, ready to diagnose any dilemma ailing your devices. Even if you don’t have an IT professional on-premise, every office has their de facto “tech expert”. Maybe that person is you, maybe it’s an intern, accountant, whomever. But now that your employees are scattered, what is the proper protocol for handling complex technical difficulties? Or, more importantly, what is the proper protocol for proactively deterring these issues? Google is always ready and willing to answer your questions, but sometimes your employees will require more than a search query.

Cyber Security

Technical malfunctions are an issue in more ways than one. In the midst of the most abrupt shift businesses—and, frankly, modern society—have ever seen, hackers, scammers, and delinquents across the world are digging their seedy fingers into any vulnerability they can detect.

Protecting your business against threats starts with investing in the proper technology, but it goes far beyond that. Your employees need to understand the importance of protecting your business’s data, and need to be aware of the dangers that often lie in plain sight. With the persistent and continued entanglement of personal and business information comes increased responsibility on behalf of you and your employees.

Time Is Money

If your business has never been exposed to a data breach, then consider yourself lucky. Cybercrime has consistently been on the rise for years now, but the COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to even more attacks across the globe. With an unprecedented amount of people working from unsecured workstations, it has been a proverbial field day for cybercriminals.

Now, you may be thinking “Why would someone hack my small business? We’re not Apple or Amazon with trillions in the bank.” It’s a fair point, but put yourself in the shoes of the criminals for a minute. Would you feel more apt to launch an attack on an organization with arguably more money, power, and cybersecurity systems than most world governments or on a small to medium sized business with (relatively) less money, power, or cybersecurity infrastructure?

From the eyes of the criminal, it seems wise to steal $1000 from 100 different uber-vulnerable small businesses rather than heist $100,000 from a Fortune 500 company. Insidious as these criminals are, they are savvy enough not to pick fights they cannot win. 

According to a study published on Vox.com, 1 in 5 small businesses have fallen victim to a cyberattack. Of those, 60% go out of business within 6 months. Considering that—according to IBM—the average time from identification to containment of a security breach is 280 days, your business simply can’t afford not to take preventive measures against cybercrime. 

Securing The Workstation

Many businesses have been fortunate enough to be able to give employees the hardware they need to continue operating remotely. For others, they’ve had to rely on their employees’ personal computers to get the job done. By now, in either case, you’ve probably read up on standard security measures to take. You’ve mandated VPN software, ensuring passwords don’t actually contain the word “password”, and educated your employees on the dangers of phishing emails.

Even if you put all of these procedures in place, sometimes they are simply not enough. No business is unique—true cybersecurity can’t be achieved with a “one-size-fits-all” approach. By using software that can mold to the contour of your business’s specific needs, you’ll be able to have the peace of mind knowing that your data is safe.  

With all of your employees operating, communicating, and sharing documents under the same umbrella of security, you’ll be able to better handle any issues that arise. More importantly, you’ll be able to prevent them from even happening in the first place.

People, Not Computers, Make Choices

As a business owner, your job is not only to put proper security protocols in place, but to ensure they are actually being followed. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link—it only takes one less-than-diligent employee to compromise your data. How can you make sure security measures are consistently being adhered to without disrupting the atmosphere of trust that has become so crucial to remote work?

Online Trust

The answer is proper training. Whether that is coming directly from you, your IT department, or an outside agency enlisted to help your business, it is critical that your employees know what’s at stake. Cybercriminals are cunning, heartless, and unrelenting—they will always be pursuing new tactics of subversion. When your employees are properly educated and trained on how to best hinder the actions of malevolent actors, they will better understand the gravity of the situation.

Act Early, Remain Diligent

Not all problems can be avoided, especially during a time like this. But if you find your business playing catch-up when it comes to a security breach, it may already be too late. By taking tangible, preventative steps to install the proper systems you can rest assured that you’re doing everything in your power to keep your business afloat.

Keep your employees in the loop—their understanding of the critical role they play in data security is paramount. Cybercrime will never truly cease to exist, but when it comes to your business, your fate doesn’t have to be determined by anyone but you.

This Is How Remote Teams Can Work Better Than Ever

Teamwork makes the dream work, right? Everyone has learned at some point in their lives—often the hard way—that great things are seldom accomplished alone. This is true for businesses, families, sports teams, and every other group of people working towards a common goal.

The key to a successful team starts with each team member knowing, and eventually mastering, their respective roles. As a leader, your job is to accurately assess the various talents (and weaknesses) of your team members and assign responsibilities accordingly. Some people will naturally bite off more than they can chew, while others will refuse to take even a nibble. Ultimately, success lies with one key mantra that New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick has summed up better than anyone: “Do your job.”

business management technology remote work

Doing your job has taken on a whole new meaning since March. By now, “working from home” has become just “working”. As the United States asynchronously reopens, you are left wondering how long you will be required—and how long you’ll want to—work from home.

Some businesses have faltered during this transition, but plenty of others have come out stronger than ever. If your business falls into the former category, take a minute to assess why. Are your recent struggles born solely from the switch to remote work, or do they originate from the lack of resources, support, and technology utilized during the transition? Every business is unique, but what has been made clear during the last several months is that remote work is actually an advantage for your business—if done correctly.

Increased Job Satisfaction

In a recent survey conducted by CNBC and SurveyMonkey, the Workforce Happiness Index score of employees who were working remotely was higher than those who were not. Granted, working from home during a pandemic is a privilege not afforded to everyone. Those who have continued to leave their homes every day—risking their health and their family’s health—have been reasonably less satisfied.

That being said, if your business is able to function remotely, there is no excuse not to. Cutting out long commutes, increasing family time, and, once again, ensuring personal health and safety has led remote workers to this increased level of satisfaction. Satisfied workers are the backbone of a productive team.

Workers Have Been More Productive At Home

Sometimes, it feels like we need to be in a room with someone to collaborate effectively. Well, at least, we felt that way until COVID hit. While we all occasionally miss the hustle and bustle of the workplace, workers have proven that they are as equally collaborative and productive from home—if not more so.

Working remotely, your employees are able to avoid distractions that come along with the hustle and bustle. With the advancement of technologies that allow businesses to manage projects remotely, your team can continue to function like the well-oiled machine it is. Collaboration is more important than ever—but removing the extraneous interactions that come with the territory of non-remote work has allowed workers to focus on the thing that matters most: getting work done.  

Everyone is Saving Money

This should speak for itself, right? Your business can increase productivity while you—and your employees—are saving money. When it comes to overhead, your office space is no longer the albatross that it can sometimes feel like. According to Global Workplace Analytics, employers can actually save over $22,000 per fully remote employee per year. 

Choosing an Outfit

That is substantial, to say the least. With every dollar saved comes the opportunity to invest in your business’s future. Your employees will appreciate the efforts given to help them achieve more, and in turn your customers will be left more satisfied than ever. Beyond helping your business’s bottom line, your employees will save money, too. Remote work has allowed for less spending on transportation, food, and professional attire.

Access To Top Talent

When geographical constraints are removed from the equation, your talent acquisition pool becomes a whole lot wider. When you’re able to reach across the country—or even the world—to assemble your team, you’ll be able to find people that seamlessly mesh with your company’s culture. In the same vein, you’ll be able spend less time getting new team members up to speed. If you are able to make the best hire the first time around, the decreased rate of employee turnover will allow your teams to accomplish more.

Better Together

It can be stressful to manage a team from a distance. It can be stressful to be a part of a team from a distance. It can be stressful to simply exist in 2020. And that’s ok. We are fortunate enough to live in an era where your business can not only survive this pandemic, but come out of it better prepared for the future by putting the proper tools in place. Being able to collaborate with people around the globe is often something that we take for granted. Right now, your employees are better off at home. When your employees are better off, your business is too.

Can HR Still Be Human From a Distance?

In this new socially distanced work environment, we’ve all learned a lot about how we work. Drafting emails, creating spreadsheets, and communicating with clients has transitioned relatively smoothly to the home office, albeit with a brief adjustment period. 

What about Human Resources? Along with sales and customer service, HR divisions are most responsible for serving people. They onboard new employees, share vital company policies, navigate tricky workplace issues, and even handle terminations. Done remotely, the most “human” parts of this crucial department are, at best, awkward. At worst, they’re dangerous. Goals of a remote HR division include emphasizing organization, efficiency, and—most of all—empathy. So what do HR professionals need to keep in mind as they continue to adapt to a remote environment?

HR Needs To Be More Human Than Ever

individuals that gain from using all in one business management software

The duties of HR professionals have shifted and expanded overnight. Making sure employees are able to access their health benefits is more crucial than ever. The same goes for ensuring timely paychecks. On top of meeting professional expectations, HR professionals have been tasked with the tall order of maintaining and cultivating a remote office culture to keep employees fresh and motivated.

While the pillars of HR professionals remain intact, their workload, methods, and need for additional support have increased exponentially. The focus of their work during this pandemic can be summed up simply: be a support system for the human needs of employees as they adapt to life in a remote office. 

Lisa Rowan, research vice president for HR, talent, and learning strategies at IDC, a Massachusetts based research firm, says in an article for SHRM that an “HR managers’ number one job right now is to keep people up-to-date, be reassuring and build trust.” When employees feel connected and cared for, their productivity will reach new heights.

Getting Organized Out of the Office

During any major transition, especially one of this magnitude, it can be easy to slip into a pattern of disorganization. As HR teams work to meet the ever-shifting needs of employees, their role is to create a well-organized infrastructure of collaboration and connectivity. Even without an office, it’s possible to have a centralized virtual location that employees can access each day.

all in one business management software in puzzle piece form

Maintaining a singular, fluid schedule of your employees’ hours, appointments, sick days, client visits, and whatever else fills their workday will cut down on wasted time. Everyone always appreciates a good “happy birthday” wish, too. 

Organized information is easily accessible information. When employees can’t simply walk down the hall to get answers on company policies, they’ll need a clear, centralized place to access documents.

Great Tech Breeds Great Talent

By now, we’ve certainly endured the struggles of the hiring process. Acquiring top talent has never been easy, let alone in the age of COVID-19. Most likely, a face-to-face interview has traditionally been the cornerstone of the hiring process. 

Hiring applicants who fit seamlessly into your company’s culture is crucial to the success of your business. It can certainly be tough to judge if someone is a good fit without being able to sit down with them in person. Being forced to deviate from the normal hiring process is scary, but hiring the wrong person is scarier

vector image of two shaking hands after using all in one business management software

In the age of remote hiring, being able to easily track the status of your applicants is essential. HR Teams can work on keeping all of your applicants’ pertinent documents (resume, cover letter, samples of work, etc.) in one, easily accessible place. This goes for documents such as tax paperwork and personal identification once they are hired, too.

Handling Difficult Decisions

As tough as it is to hire the right talent, it’s even tougher when the hand you’ve been dealt calls for a reduction in your employee headcount. HR departments have unfortunately been the bearers of bad news lately.

Strategic Planning

Since the onset of the pandemic, 76% of US companies have had to let employees go, with many not knowing whether they’d return. That’s a scary statistic. Layoffs are painful—and due to COVID-19—often out of your control. When it’s time to make these difficult decisions, it’s best to be concise and streamlined. 

But HR doesn’t have to make the process any more difficult than it already is. Make sure that sensitive information that now-former employees could access does not travel with them to their next job. That means being able to revoke access to data, both instantly and remotely.

Eyes On The Future

In today’s unstable business environment, Human Resources professionals can still be just that: resources for humans. By creating an efficient, effective, and organized virtual environment, HR teams can continue to prioritize the well-being of employees. Doing so requires the right tools, especially when you need to be prepared more quickly than usual.