As countries across the globe are starting to ease up on COVID-19 restrictions, organizations are working harder than ever to facilitate a smooth transition for their employees as they start returning back to work.
Securing their employees’ well being while ensuring productivity and continued efficiency is a tough balance to strike. But there are strategies business leaders can adopt in order to get started on the right foot.
What we recommend is:
- Bring executives together to build a robust return-to-workplace plan
- Incorporate various stages into your plan – starting from working with a minimum employee capacity to eventually allowing all employees to return
- Ensure that employees are kept abreast with relevant knowledge and key information surrounding both the pandemic and ways to stay secure, as well as specific measures your organization is taking to protect its employees
- Use a return-to-workplace app to ensure social distancing and physical safety at workplaces and streamline all the efforts required for a safe reopening.
- Keep employees informed about important updates and company announcements, and provide remote work support with a crisis management app
- Ensure employee productivity during the return to workplace by deploying a modern intranet that provides a single digital interface to get work done.
Adopting these measures in a methodical manner can help businesses facilitate a smooth transitioning process. Organizations that are looking to allow employees to return to the workplace want to ensure business continuity and employee wellbeing while also driving productivity.
But here are a few key factors to consider as they embark on this journey to a ‘new normal’:
- As your employees return to work, they will seek centralized knowledge access and easy, quick communication channels for health, safety and office productivity updates
- Employees will also need personalized relevant updates that are specific to their role and region
- Timely insights delivered by business leaders will be critical in ensuring employee confidence as they navigate a rough period and also keep the organization aligned on important changes
How modern intranets can help businesses establish a seamless return to workplace:
Organizations that have successfully adopted intranets can already affirm the various benefits a modern intranet can provide. We’ll highlight a few of these and talk a little more about why these features are incredibly critical in successfully navigating a post-COVID world:
- Keeps employees informed
- Provides a one-stop, easy access to tools and processes
- Facilitates communication and collaboration amongst employees
- Offers the ability to integrate and collate relevant content and solutions to enhance office productivity
- Offers a direct, faster way for leaders to connect with employees and communicate their business goals or bigger picture concerns
- Allows space for employees to share their struggles and seek solutions from peers, thereby driving camaraderie and better work relationships
- Serves as one-stop source for all policies, updates and alerts related to the organization
- Provide a personalized search experience and helps employees find information across apps
These features have gained even more importance in the COVID-19 aftermath, as your employees grapple with the pandemic and seek ways to stay productive despite various ongoing challenges they are forced to deal with. Your employees have most likely have had to adapt to new work environments and processes and tools without prior training or preparation, all of which may be less than optimal and not conducive to productivity. Then there’s also the fear and frustration that stems from potential illness to ongoing job cuts and a variety of other distressing factors.
It’s a critical period for forward thinking organizations to recognize these high-priority challenges and ensure they have systems in place to address them effectively. A modern intranet is a great place to start.
When implemented thoughtfully, your intranet can serve as a chief source of critical information and ongoing relief for your employees. It also helps mitigate a variety of user challenges that have come into effect due to being thrown so suddenly into adapting new ways of working, while simultaneously equipping employees with the right tools and support to deal with ongoing anxiety.
How modern intranets can help businesses establish a seamless return to workplace:
Intranet personalization enables organizations to offer enhanced employee experiences and also minimizes time required to navigate and locate items or resources they specifically need. Intranets with built-in personalization allow employees to find quick information and insights on their personalized dashboards. Powered with AI, modern intranets deliver personalized content based on users’ profiles, locations, activities, roles, interests etc.
Personalization can prove even more critical in the COVID-19 aftermath – as it allows you to offer your employees relevant content and customized information by displaying it right on their profiles, with minimal effort from their end.
In addition, employees will also have the ability to customize the intranet according to their interests and needs.
A well-crafted intranet personalization strategy is not only important in terms of offering immense value to intranet users, but in the long term, it also helps increase productivity and adoption rates.
Offer Personalized Notifications
As employees navigate a world ravaged by the pandemic, they will deeply appreciate being notified about important news, events, announcements and other updates, specific to their subscription.
AI algorithms in a modern intranet can personalize and recommend the right news and updates based on the users’ roles, locations and departments.
In addition, employees can also choose to subscribe to different categories – global news, regional news, department activities, project status, events, announcements etc., and others, to receive notifications about the updates. These notifications will be user-specific and suggested automatically based on the user’s profile and preferences.
For example, if employees want to find out updates about how the organization is dealing with the pandemic, what relief efforts are currently underway, what insurance packages are being offered by the organization, or even if they want more information about events in the organization or the status of the ongoing project, they can choose options like events or projects accordingly and get personalized notifications.
Personalization facilitates enhanced organizational culture, increases employee engagement, productivity, offers ease of access, and most importantly for a COVID-impacted world, it helps you quickly share relevant organizational and global news and updates.
Enables leaders to connect with employees across the board in a more meaningful way
Now more than ever, engaging with employees and building more resilient relationships with them is critical. There are a myriad of emotions individuals that compromise your workforce will experience – ranging from anxiety to fear to stress to grief caused by personal loss. It’s important for business leaders to recognize these evolving emotions and provide the right support and communication to equip your employees to survive, thrive and sail through these difficult times. An intranet gives you the platform to connect more deeply with your employees and offers them a place to discuss and share their experiences. This also serves as an opportunity for organizations to build a stronger work culture, one that is founded on honesty and transparency.
Mesh, an AI infused SharePoint intranet software solution acts as a one stop shop in providing relevant information at the right time to the right people. It equips employees and users with a single point of access to personalized information, tailored based on activities, geo, preferences, teams, etc. It is helping organizations transform their internal communications and employee experience and take it to the next level, with a ready to deploy framework. it is equipped with an autonomous, self-governance, personalized information and feed, cognitive enterprise search, integration with LoB applications, content management system, knowledge at fingertips, AI powered chatbot and the ability to crowdsource ideas – features that are going to prove invaluable in navigating a post COVID world as effectively as possible.
If you’d like to learn more about this topic, please feel free to get in touch with one of our digital workplace consultants for a personalized consultation.