By being forced to change the way we work, we have realized how important it is to invest in the training of employees, so that they would be independent and capable of handling unforeseen situations. Many employers are now convinced that working from home can be effective, and they are starting to consider this option even after the crisis. Such a change could have a direct impact on job market in the future. Employers could save on investing in expanding work space and, instead, invest in creating new jobs, Dragana Atanasov Poparic, Country Manager of Hive Ventures Services, has said for BIZLife.
The emergency situation has led to the management resorting to certain changes in managing teams. Can you tell us what the crucial changes were?
The global crisis happened very quickly, which led to many companies being forced to modernize their way of doing business. The key change included organizing infrastructure and employees to work from home. Taking care of daily work and maintaining employees’ motivation remotly were the biggest challenge. It is very important to trust the employees, however, some leaders feel more confident if they are able to monitor their team regularly. Since the crisis made that impossible, I believe that a large number of companies have survived thanks to the trust they had in their employees. Any kind of unnecessary micromanagement could have had a counter effect on employees’ motivation and results.
Do you think that all these changes, e.g. work from home, which we were forced to implement, will now perhaps become part of the flexibility that employers offer to employees?
Current situation has definitely contributed to changes in the way businesses operate. Many companies perceived working from home as vacation. They believed that employees could not be as efficient or that they would not work full time, however, we have witnessed otherwise. Businesses have survived purely thanks to employees who worked very hard during challenging times. This was an opportunity for many employers to realize that working from home can be very efficient and provide an opportunity for employees to better organize their private lives, without having a negative impact on their work.
Economic consequences are also expected. Will they also affect the recruitment process, the dynamics?
The recruitment dynamics will be different in each industry. Unfortunately, some industries have suffered more damage than others and will need more time to recover. However, what is expected is that companies will start hiring a large number of people in the same period of time. This will create a very favourable market opportunity for candidates, but unfavourable for employers who will face unplanned competition during the recruitment process, and will have to make very attractive offers in order to attract talent.Companies who managed to keep their employees during these challanging times are in a much more favourable position on the market.Those who resorted to dismissing people may later face bigger challanges than COVID-19.
Do you have any advice for employers?
It is difficult to give advice, because every company and industry has gone through certain challanges. Many companies have spent too much time thinking about the consequences, whilst postponing further business planing, including recruitment. My advice to companies is to start hiring on time in order to be able to attract the best talent on the market.
What are the main consequences of the crisis in the future?
Hive Ventures Services is part of The Hive Group, which operates on the major global financial markets. We work with clients from different industries; therefore we have insight into different business models. The world has begun to face global recession, but digitalization and modernization of business processes have enabled the survival of a large number of companies on the market. Unfortunately, there are sectors in which the nature of business does not allow a digital way of operations and they are forced to cope with the crisis only with the help of business liquidity.
What could we learn from the crisis?
First of all, we have learned that micromanagement is unnecessary in business. By being forced to change the way we work, we have realized how important it is to invest in the training of employees, so that they would be independent and capable of handling unforeseen situations. Many employers are now convinced that working from home can be effective, and they are starting to consider this option even after the crisis. Such a change could have a direct impact on job market in the future. Employers could save on investing in expanding work space and, instead, invest in creating new jobs.
Photo: BIZLife/Sanda Mokanić