HR: Stint During This Covid-19 Pandemic


First, the Covid-19 pandemic response has become a top priority for HR. Covid-19 pandemic has brought many industrial employees to work from home. The pandemic has brought Human Resources to revise their company strategies and objectives. HR should provide recommendations for Covid-19 battle to embrace unpredictability, vulnerability and manage the extremes in a continuum. HR department needs to adapt to new changes and live up to the expectations of the organizations.

HR practices and technology are a key reason for the continuous rise of India’s IT sector. HR on IT is undergoing one of the most disruptive periods it has seen in a decade. While manufacturing sectors, it’s hard to adopt the remote work but could be conceptually against it as a practice. Everything is changing, and quickly including the sorts of innovation HR experts use, the experience those frameworks convey, and afterward hidden programming structures, however, fabricating parts are confronting a backfire due to lack of alternatives for the production process for continuation.

Many companies like Tata Motors, Hindustan Unilever, ITC, and Wipro have reduced half of their employees. These companies are following government guidelines and safety measures. Situations like this, HR, in addition to handling the business requirements, is also responsible for managing and apprehensions of their employees. Top management can play a critical role in helping HR overcomes this by personally endorsing the use of technology and automation in HR practices. 

Remote work may become permanent in organizations that they want more of their onsite employees to continue to work remotely after the pandemic passes. This shift will come with its HR challenges. The skills that are utilized this time will likely continue to be built and developed. One of the strengths of the HR professional is building relationships; the challenges are how to continue to build those relationships as the nature of work changes, and as the nature of the HR role changes. The problem of employees due to remote work is that they are stressed because the kids are trying to get their attention while they are working.  

In an un-organized manufacturing industry, the COVID-19 uncertainty would impact the smaller organizations with lesser retentive power, due to their low profitability. In the manufacturing industry, HR plays an essential role in the uncertainty of supply chain, logistics and operations which affects production efficiency and effectiveness. In manufacturing industries, HR should be high-strung due to contact of each employee is high.

On-site employees need to follow below measures:

  • Ensuring the employee’s safety.
  • Maintaining regular communication with employees.
  • Ensuring equitable employee’s policies.
  • Providing paid leaves to pregnant, old, heart and lung disease people. Thus, developing employee-support solution.
  • Seeking employee feedback regularly.
  • Rewarding and recognizing employees during this pandemic.

Remote control work enables companies to cut the cost of rent, power, maintenance cost, etc. HR should define different strategies for on-site and work from home employees. Facing the challenge of maintaining productivity and motivation of self and employees are obligatory.

The Government of India allowed 33% of employees to work in the offices. Later, on June 1st, the big question was: can organizations start the operations with its full-fledged employees? The biggest concern to the employees is the fear of job security; the HR must talk to the employees by giving them moral support so they can concentrate on work. The safety and good health of the employees and their families, the employees should be rewarded with bonuses as encouragement so that they can work effectively. Various MNC’s are offering work from home as the safety of the employees during this pandemic. Already Twitter, Google, Facebook are exhibiting a new culture of work from home. 

Business sustainability means the only thing – preparing for the future by making the workforce future-ready. This is where HR plays a pivotal role in leading the change. HR must work directly towards the success of the business by continuously upgrading skills of the present workforce on a real-time basis. The HR should develop a recovery strategy for good companies, while not so good one will have to develop survival strategies.

This article has been co-authored with Madagoni Rakesh and Ganapuram Vamshidhar Reddy, Woxsen University.