The last one year has witnessed a lot of changes in the way organisations function

Since safeguarding the health of employees has become primary along with ensuring business growth, organisations have reoriented themselves to allow employees to work remotely or at physical workplaces as per their job roles. This kind of arrangement places a lot of responsibility on the shoulders of HR managers. They now have the job of managing employees working from different locations and providing them with the right kind of experience that assures sustained productivity. This stretches from ergonomics, networking infrastructure, employee engagement and mental health to developing innovative models of food delivery.

4 interesting HR trends have emerged from a survey conducted by Longitude, a Financial Times company, for Sodexo in February 2021.

 

Empowerment of HR leaders in future transformation plans

95% of key decision makers and influencers in India working as senior HR, operations, procurement and food/facilities executives in large corporates felt that they were integral to the organization and that they had the competence and ability to shape the company’s direction and growth. Their ideas could make a difference to the organization, help in overcoming the challenges and transform the company.

Employee expectation on investment in policies that support mental wellbeing

95% of respondents in India were of the view that along with physical health, mental wellbeing is now a primary factor in ensuring employee satisfaction as well as aiding productivity. Fear of the pandemic, change in work environment, social isolation, imbalance in work-life, apprehension regarding pay cut and job loss – are all factors that threaten the mental health of employees today. Thus, employees expect a more empathetic attitude of the organization that focuses on relieving stress and motivating employees in their daily life.

Finding innovative food models that fit with the new ways of working

With the hybrid working model now in operation, employees expect a similar kind of food experience whether they work from their offices, from home or from co-working spaces. Although lavish buffet spreads can no longer be a part of the menu even at physical workplaces with onsite kitchen, yet people expect fresh, nutritious and delicious food to be available to them, irrespective of where they work from. Food from central kitchens could be delivered to them via food aggregators. Meal boxes, smart vending machines that have temperature controlled units to provide both hot and cold meals, ‘Grab and go’ packages – could be part of the solution.

Cost-saving and efficiency are key factors determining workplace transformation

71% of leaders in India voiced their opinion that although employee experience was a priority, yet it lost out to cost-saving and efficiency while considering workplace transformation. Organisations are finding it difficult to adapt to the unprecedented changes due to the pandemic and are trying their best to balance business growth with employee experience; however, they still have to work harder to provide a better experience to their employees.

HR managers thus, now have a clear view of the road ahead. Along with encouraging more investments in technology that can support the workspace of employees, no matter from where they work from; they will have to maneuver the organization in the right direction and encourage the organization to adopt strategies that build engagement, drive productivity and optimize future talent opportunities.

September 07, 2021