HR Tips When Entering a Recession

HR Tips

Dealing with the prospect of an economic downturn is challenging for any organization. It’s better to be out in front of it than behind and the time to plan is NOW. Here are some HR strategies to help your organization weather a recession.

Evaluate Your Employees’ Skills and Provide Training
In an overall strategy to help reduce costs, employees are often asked to do more with less. That’s especially true during a recession, where employees may need to take on additional tasks or work when an open position is put on hold or layoffs are necessary. Now is the time to evaluate your employees’ skills to ensure you have the right people in the right positions. Investigate where you can upskill or cross-train people for potential new roles, and then provide that training. Succession planning can also help you evaluate who could step into a position if an employee departs, helping to maintain continuity.

Streamlining your operations and processes around employee evaluations and training can lead to significant savings. Further automation or outsourcing of other activities, such as HR operations, can lead to additional savings, helping to maximize your budget. Working with an HR outsourcer, like Employco, can help you find areas to minimize your costs and create processes, policies, and training that optimize the workforce you have.

Focus on Employee Support and Engagement
80% of workers fear losing their job in the upcoming recession, and 54% would take a pay cut to stay employed. It is essential for your employees to feel supported in the face of uncertainty, additional work, and rising costs. Employees who feel supported and engaged are more likely to stay with the organization and are more willing to take on new responsibilities. Regular work-related and social interactions can help maintain productivity and reduce burnout while keeping leadership apprised of employees’ feelings. Management should be open to employee feedback and prepared to support workers who exhibit stress or otherwise demonstrate that they are struggling.

Streamlining processes and putting policies in place that provide support and recognition to employees taking on new roles or additional work can improve morale and keep your workforce engaged. Employco can help your organization streamline processes and build new policies that help optimize and support the workforce you have.

Maintain Open Lines of Communication
In times of uncertainty, it is critical to ensure transparency and maintain good, open lines of communication. The more transparent you can be with your employees, the better. Be upfront about the organization’s challenges and what leadership is doing to mitigate them. Schedule regular town halls or company-wide meetings to keep your employees in the loop and continue to build trust. Use those meetings to communicate new policies, share company news, and discuss new ways your team has found to save money other than through layoffs or pay cuts. If layoffs and pay cuts are part of the necessary changes, be transparent about that too.

It could be that streamlining a process or outsourcing an activity can create savings. Be open to suggestions from your staff on ways to minimize costs or operations. Use communication tools like your employee portal to document and share information and keep your employees updated on news, announcements, policies, processes, and staffing updates. Partnering with an HR outsourcer can help your organization streamline internal communications to reduce costs and maintain compliance.

Outsourcing your HR or other activities to become part of a larger purchasing and negotiating group is another strategy to help a business remain competitive during periods of high inflation. Contact Employco to learn more about how we help guide our clients through periods of growth and the challenges of recession.