Safety and health practitioner
With a new year upon us, businesses can now focus on new beginnings and progressing the past year.
The tech chain industry is no different, with lessons learned from 2021 and post-COVID life influencing how it approaches its next chapter, looking at things from a people perspective and supporting. company growth in the lead. In this article, Bev Markland, Chief People Officer at Agilitas, reflects on what companies should do to ensure best practices in 2022 and beyond.
Recruitment has been a challenge in many industries, with new demands and expectations, which means distribution companies need to be more flexible, diverse and innovative than ever to attract and retain people.
Putting in place a human strategy is all about moving businesses forward with a more sophisticated people-centered approach, removing some of the historical factors that don’t fit today’s culture, and implementing other benefits that people now expect from their working lives, which is very different from what it was just two years ago before the pandemic.
Recruit and retain talent
To maximize diversity, channel companies now seek out new talent by visiting universities, thoroughly reviewing learnings, and promoting internally as part of succession planning. This means helping people typically between the ages of 18 and 25 move up to higher positions so that they are part of the future of the business. Recruitment is now done very differently, so onboarding, in-house training, learning and development all need to reflect this change. By working in this way, the companies in the chain welcome people outside the usual interview pool who would have been targeted two or three years ago.
It’s important to make sure that all of these benefits apply to the current team as well to ensure that companies are doing everything possible to retain future talent. On top of that, the review of corporate benefits is also an expectation, with examples such as family benefits, the formal hybrid model of work, and in some cases increased annual leave. By feeling valued and part of the organization’s journey, employees understand what the big picture is and what the future of the industry might look like. The new landscape is also attracting people to what a business represents in terms of behavior and beliefs. This alignment is going to become increasingly important when examining retention and loyalty influencers.
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Distribution companies, like many others, are supposed to provide a cultural vision that conforms to the ethics they preach. It means integrating the core values, the size of the business, where they want to be in two, three, and five years and recognizing their locations.
Employees in different roles all want and need different things. For example, warehouse staff depend on being on site, while other team members might never set foot in the office. What has been learned in the wake of the pandemic is that it was necessary to turn back the clock to move forward, with the employee now having more votes than he ever did. To find a balance, the industry has to find a way to accommodate that voice and at what level.
After so much time in isolation, it is important to prevent businesses from operating in silos. It has become very easy, especially when working remotely, to overlook the different needs of team members. This can be helped by bringing together team leaders and supervisors who have never met before to improve, coach and develop them and make sure they feel heard and supported. The workplace has evolved and today’s employees won’t stay with a company if they don’t feel valued or out of alignment. Other advances include the provision of mental health services, such as mental health rescuers, while constantly seeking new initiatives that align with the changing landscape of tomorrow’s businesses.
By hiring new talent who can bring fresh eyes to a distribution business, the business may seek to implement innovative working methods, different experiences, and new perspectives for more solution-based ideas.
2021 saw the Channel industry build on what it learned in 2020, with a more diverse range of people aged 16 to 65 now bringing a multitude of perspectives to the fore. Encouragingly, we are also seeing more women joining the tech industry than ever before, dispelling gender stereotypes and creating more diversity and inclusion both at the senior level and at the grassroots level. The average age within a business has now dropped from 40 to 29, which offers a huge opportunity for the industry to develop and grow.
Retention is a big challenge, and employees will no longer stay where they are not valued. By being supported, understood and welcomed, channel companies have the opportunity to strengthen their workforce with diverse and talented individuals who bring with them new ideas and experience. Allocating time to team members through HR or their manager ensures loyalty and relationship building, not only professional but also personal, which leads to happiness, productivity and ambition in the years to come. .
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