Where HR and IT Intersect: Managing Workforces During a Crisis

By Erik Linask May 08, 2020

The past two months have been extraordinary.  Just about everyone’s lives have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to spread across the globe.  It’s a challenge unlike any others most business leaders have had to manage, as mandatory stay-at-home orders have required most companies to create new workforce strategies and shift immediately to full remote arrangements.

The tech side of it is one challenge.  To retain communications continuity both internally and externally, businesses need some form of cloud communications that makes it easy to extend access to any location.  There’s also the need to ensure access to other corporate resources that employees need to do their jobs.  And there’s also the security aspect – with a shift to teleworking, the risk of cyber attacks becomes inherently greater.  But, all of these may not be the greatest challenge.

While technology supports business operations, people are what makes companies successful.  Despite the IT gaps this pandemic has highlighted, solutions are readily available to overcome obstacles.  But, the combination of an unexpected transition to working from home and learning new ways of working, the personal and social challenges of shelter-in-place orders, the disruption to other aspects of lives – including healthcare needs – and the continued uncertainty that surrounds COVID-19, employees are facing a unique set of challenges that could prove disruptive.

Ultimately, there is a new burden on corporate management and HR teams, who need to collaborate with IT organizations and maintain open lines of communication with employees to ensure they have the information they need to not only remain productive, but also to reduce anxiety caused by the situation. 

An upcoming webinar on Tuesday, May 12, will address these issues, and how corporate leadership can and should step up to build tighter internal communications and relationships to support their workers during the crisis.  Billie Hartless, Chief HR Officer at Mitel (News - Alert), and Josh Hortsman, partner at Sales Benchmark Index, will talk about how businesses can effectively manage the transition to remote working, not only from a tech angle, but, more importantly, from a human angle. 

The session will discuss options for managing a business during this or any other crisis, including how to navigate the various phases of the process to move from reaction to recovery stages.  They’ll also talk about the intersection of HR and technology, and how technology can be used to develop better internal communications strategies to keep workers informed and to ensure they are well-positioned to succeed in this new environment. 

We really don’t know how long we’ll be in this situation – it could be weeks, or it could be months.  But what we can be fairly certain of is this pandemic is going to leave a lasting mark on workforces and will change the way companies work.  It’s also likely this won’t be the last crisis companies have to deal with.  This webinar will help business leaders understand how to better handle the current crisis, and will set them up for even greater success during any emergencies beyond COVID-19.

Register for the webinar, “Powering Connections Through Crisis - Business Continuity in an Uncertain Time,” today, for a practical discussion of business continuity in times of crisis.

Edited by Erik Linask
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