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5 big changes to HR in a post pandemic world

5 big changes to HR in a post pandemic world

It’s impossible to say which areas of our lives will remain unchanged post COVID-19, but one thing we know for sure is that it will be very different to the way we’re used to working. HR leaders are at the front of this new revolution and have been tasked with leading the workforce to victory.

As some organisations have already returned to work and others have set about creating new policies, we can gaze into our crystal ball to predict what the future of work and HR will look like in the next 12 months. 

Here are our top 5 HR and workforce predictions post COVID-19:

    1. Leveraging HR data

    As the crisis unfolded, the spotlight was on HR and payroll to answer critical questions from the c-suite such as, “What percentage of our staff are sick?”, “What’s the cost of furloughing half of the workforce?” and “Do we have enough healthy staff to remain operational?”

    HR and payroll are being recognised as the guardians of rich employee data which can be utilised by the organisation to create a resilient strategy. We predict that senior executives will be consulting with HR more regularly and using HR and payroll data to make strategic decisions.

      2. Rise of home workers

      Before the UK’s ‘lockdown’ around 5% of the workforce worked from home, now millions more have joined them. HR professionals have worked hard to ensure the smooth transition from work to home for a short period, but as the time goes on more employees will be asking to work from home full time.

      With perks such as spending more time with family and avoiding a tough commute, the appeal of a home-based work life is strong. HR leaders must be prepared to roll-out work from home policies and strike the right balance for their organisation. Some companies will thrive with a more dynamic workforce, while some will prefer a more traditional approach. Whichever camp your organisation falls under, be prepared to revisit your policy often until you agree on the right approach. 

        3. Payroll contingency plans

        Paying employees accurately and on-time is the number one rule for every business, but many organisations struggled through COVID-19. As we come out of the pandemic, organisations should be thinking about their payroll strategy. How well did your payroll cope?

        For businesses with a smaller payroll team, outsourcing to a managed service is the most effective way of ensuring that payroll runs smoothly. You can off-load the work to a dedicated payroll team that you can trust and be sure that all your employees will be paid. Alternately, organisations with a larger payroll department could use cloud-based payroll software (such as SD Worx payroll) to increase efficiency, reduce manual processes and improve employee experience.

          4. Separate but together

          Remember the good old days of team lunches and chatting to your mate over the desk? These days are over. Even after social distancing rules have relaxed, we predict that teams will be split up to prevent entire departments becoming sick at the same time. Employees may be asked to sit with a different department instead of their team, or they may be encouraged to ‘hot desk’ as organisations encourage more employees to work from home when they can.

            5. Prioritising wellbeing

            HR professionals are already experts in looking out for the wellbeing of their workforce, but this will become even more crucial in the post COVID-19 world. Organisations have stepped up to make sure employees’ wellbeing is taken seriously, from hosting virtual yoga classes, to running company-wide surveys to find out how to boost wellbeing. We believe that mental wellbeing will be considered just as important as physical wellbeing and HR teams will be expected to create new policies and implement change to ensure wellbeing is valued in their organisation.


            Do you feel prepared for the future of work after COVID-19? We’ll help you navigate through the uncharted waters and ensure that your payroll can cope. Get a free virtual payroll efficiency review with our payroll gurus.