The outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has impacted nearly every element of our lives. Social distancing, mandatory quarantines, and troubling health statistics punctuated the dire atmosphere of the pandemic’s earliest days. Then, the conversation turned toward the growing concerns surrounding jobs and finances. No matter how the situation pans out, no matter when an effective vaccine is released, this much will remain true and vividly persistent: the dynamics of employment and economics have altered radically—perhaps indefinitely. The nature of work transformed practically overnight. Businesses across the world continue to struggle with the abrupt reality of sweeping telework arrangements, relocating workers, mass layoffs, the potential demise of traditional brick-and-mortar offices, and displaced professionals dropping out of labor participation. But from crisis springs opportunity as we explore in our latest eBook, “New Talent Strategies for Our New Normal: Playbook for Contingent Workforce Innovation in the Pandemic Era.”
We’re Living with Change, Now Let’s Focus on Progress
At this very moment in time, we’ve arrived at a critical juncture, where the historical elements of our labor legacy intersect. In many ways, the presence of COVID-19 has inadvertently spurred the confluence of these trends. The impetus for greater workforce and business autonomy, combined with the continuing evolution of contingent work, is no longer just an interesting business case in cost savings and productivity. It has been impacted and dramatically influenced by the presence of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Our means of engaging, directing, and interacting with talent must change, along with the urgent need to update entrenched laws and regulations to fuel progress. Staffing providers and workforce solutions firms are well accustomed to handling remote talent with efficiency and attention. But as the pandemic forces traditional companies to operate within these parameters, the expertise of the staffing industry could play a larger role in the coming new normal.
Innovation Shifts from Luxury to Necessity
As the world and our industries move toward the next iteration of normal, positive momentum can only be achieved and sustained through a committed emphasis on innovation. That doesn’t mean developing new smart devices, cool lifestyle apps, or the next “insert-big-sexy-product-name-here.” It means identifying the challenges we must overcome and launching solutions that will solve those problems while fueling our success. That could manifest itself in the form of new tech or enhancements to existing platforms. But the march forward will also require a paradigm shift in approaches, methods, attitudes, and structures related to work. We will have to stop considering remote work as a stopgap measure and begin concentrating on maximizing the potential of an organized yet distributed workforce. We will need to accelerate the best practices and tools that will facilitate genuine collaboration, elasticity, inclusion, accountability, and agility in decision-making processes. We will need to elevate the role of supply chains, partnerships, and beneficial automation—not just machines for minor convenience, job replacement, or workforce reduction. In short, we will need to rethink practically everything we took for granted as routine and entrenched before COVID-19 shattered the norm.
Solving for the New Normal
There already exist innovative approaches within the workforce solutions industry that can help rebuild a thriving talent ecosystem for our “new normal.” In our latest ebook, we explore new models that can break ground on solving the issues that our businesses and talent will face in the post-pandemic era. Download the free ebook today to discover:
- How new models such as Company as a Service (CaaS) can usher in the workforce innovations that Harvard Business Review says are needed in the time of COVID-19
- How diversity and inclusion will face new challenges, according to McKinsey and Company
- New opportunities for MSPs and staffing providers
- The role of advanced automation and technology
- How Stanford University and Google see VR as a tool for education, training, and cultural empathy