Will the Coronavirus Infect Your Healthy Employer Brand?
A few nasty posts – or major news headline – about how your company is handling the stress of the coronavirus can cause quite a stir. Maintaining a positive employer brand is what enables you to attract the best talent and keep the confidence of your customers and stakeholders. Investments in your employer brand now convey the right message during this time of uncertainty.
Forty percent of companies recognize that building a solid employer brand is a critical HR pressure1, and 59% of companies are investing more resources to make this happen.2
What Can You Do to Ease Work from Home Pressures?
Many companies hadn’t yet embraced the flexibility of a work from home policy before they were quickly thrust into it due to the coronavirus outbreak. As budgets are tightened and business plans are repaved to adjust to this economic upheaval, prioritize what your teams need to stay at peak performance and highly engaged with one another during the quarantine. Are your cost-cutting measures taking away things your employees need to be highly productive? Are you taking measures to ensure teams have a way to collaborate and keep projects moving forward?
Providing care for children and aging parents will create tremendous pressure for many employees working from home. As part of the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act, employees may be eligible to take paid sick leave or an extended family leave to care for children under 18. Think about how these options will affect your staffing needs and what other options – in terms of relaxed policies – you might be able to offer so that employees don’t feel forced to take an extended leave if they are able and want to keep working.
Team engagement is crucial while staff members are working from home, and how well you respond to your employees’ needs right now will say a lot about your employer brand.
If the Need Arises, Can You Respond Compassionately to Staffing Changes?
Many companies will benefit from stimulus relief funds to keep their businesses afloat and employees paid during the outbreak. Already, the virus has costed millions of people their job. Even with this much needed lifeline from the government, a reduction in force may be unavoidable for some industries.
The decision to lay off employees – and the support that is offered to those individuals – have a major effect on your employer brand. In our online world, company practices and corporate culture are on display for all to see. Take sites like Glassdoor, Indeed, and even Yelp, for example. And today, layoffs of nearly any size are making headlines. How you handle the reduction in force will be viewed by many.
Offering each employee outplacement services can help you protect your employer brand during a reduction in force. Such an investment has shown to help employees transition more successfully, thereby reducing their stress and minimizing your unemployment costs.
Does Investing in Your Employer Brand Make a Difference?
Stakeholders, customers, social media followers, and the local community develop an opinion about your company brand. This is especially true during a crisis or layoff. All of these individuals need to be carefully considered as you create your future staffing plans. The decisions you make (or don’t make) to prepare your management teams, take care of your exiting employees, and lead your remaining employees through change if a reduction in force is necessary influence the trust these key groups have in you.
63% of customers refuse to buy products/services from a distrusted company.3
47% of global consumers say they have avoided a company because of its online reputation or negative social reviews?4
Your organization’s values, drive, commitment, and reputation play a key part in your employer brand – even during this coronavirus pandemic. How you support your employees amidst shelter-in-place orders and even layoffs will be a crucial indicator of how quickly your company can bounce back and maintain its healthy brand.
IMPACT Group is an outplacement services firm and woman-owned business founded in 1981.
We work with organizations of all size, including Fortune 1000 organizations in retail, manufacturing, technology, pharmaceutical, energy, and other industries. Our virtual delivery model enables us to immediately support companies leveraging our coaches all across the world. If you want to reach out for a free planning consultation, contact us now.
Layoffs are not easy decisions to make. Let our guide help you determine your first step toward a compassionate reduction in force.
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1 Support Departing Employees and Your Brand with Outplacement, Aberdeen Group
2 Global Recruiting Trends, LinkedIn Hiring Solutions Insights
3 Stakeholder Trust: A Business Case, Compliance & Ethics
4 How Public Perception Can Make Or Break a Brand, And What It Means For Employees, Forbes