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Kwaku Agbesi: Dealing with layoffs throughout Covid-19: How HR can mitigate impacts on staff members


In a subject of months, the Coronavirus has had an unprecedented impact on the environment overall economy far more than anything at all this present-day generation has ever seen. Ghana, like other nations around the world all-around the entire world, has not been spared the total impacts of the pandemic as the nation’s economic system has been sent into a tailspin triggering staggering layoffs in the work surroundings.

As an HR practitioner, acquiring to allow people go is a agonizing issue to do at the greatest of moments. And all through a world wide disaster, when the world is total of uncertainty, the stakes are greater than ever. So how do HR practitioners regulate layoffs through a global crisis like the 1 at hand?

Jobberman, an HR and training portal, proffers some useful solutions that aptly balances compassion and prudence in the management of employees layoffs occasioned by the pandemic.

The Ghana Standpoint

In his digital handle to the country through the 2020 Could Day celebrations, Dr Yaw Baah, the Secretary-Normal of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), spoke of the damning impression the pandemic is having on the nation.

In accordance to him, exploration getting conducted by the Labour Study and Coverage Institute of the TUC confirmed the “devastating outcomes of the COVID-19 health and fitness disaster on jobs and livelihoods in both of those the formal and informal segments of the financial system.”

Citing the case in point of a consume exporting organization, Dr Baah reported the company experienced shed tons of its raw resources because of to border closures all over the earth.

“All informal and contract staff have been laid off. The corporation has also stopped all extra time function. As a result, workers’ incomes have lowered considerably. The company is having difficulties to pay workers, fork out social safety, pay back taxes and repay financial institution loans” he explained.

At the core of the issue is how companies can remain solvent in these tricky situations whilst ensuring employees’ wellbeing is also confirmed.

Running Layoffs

An indifferent and insensitive method to layoffs can come again to haunt you even considerably later. How you treat your staff now will shape your (employer) manufacturer write-up-coronavirus. These strategies from Jobberman will aid you control layoffs in this sort of a way that minimizes the affect on your staff members and assures your manufacturer reputation stays intact.

1. Supply Help – But Really do not Overpromise

To retain empathy and compassion, Jobberman endorses businesses must be easily readily available and eager to give guidance and counsel to their workers. As an employer, you should recognise that your personnel who have been laid off as a final result of coronavirus may possibly have to have time to process the news and may possibly arrive back to reconnect or search for your assistance. Be handy. Supply ideas about work possibilities at other companies. Supply to serve as a reference. But, do not overcommit to issues you can not provide.

2. Arrive at Out

To start with and foremost, becoming laid off can get a important toll on people emotionally, psychologically, economically, and bodily. It is critical hence that as an employer, you look at the wellbeing of your laid-off staff as you do for your organization. One particular way to efficiently do this is to really encourage discussion. Routinely preserve the strains of communication open up with your groups as it is important in aiding their psychological and physical wellbeing.

Showing empathy and respect are the most noticeable approaches you can treat personnel humanely. Whichever the situation, just one thing is specific: layoffs really should be managed in a way that leaves men and women with their dignity, humanity, and as considerably support as just one can get.

3. Adapt to Modern day Technologies

As an HR practitioner, make certain layoffs are a previous resort. You need to reflect on whether layoffs are necessary in the initial place. Critique all other solutions to see if any blend of temporal options this sort of as lowering salaries, slicing rewards, cutting down do the job several hours, and providing unpaid depart could be financially practical as an option to layoffs.

Much more importantly, adapt to modern-day systems. Alternatively of owning to lay off your team users who are in essence your company’s greatest asset, look at adapting to modern technologies to keep in business enterprise. Doing the job remotely by way of a number of new technologies these as Google Hangout, Zoom or Slack can assistance you hold the majority of your workforce and prevent any important layoffs.

Do the job in a article-Coronavirus Era

According to Moody’s Analytics, more than 50 % of all careers in the United States economic climate are at high or medium threat because of to coronavirus. The US circumstance is a microcosm of the even bigger trouble the entire world faces.

With these types of projections in brain, even if your organization has not laid-off personnel nevertheless, now is the time for HR to start out preparing for it just in circumstance the predicament receives worse. Companies that properly satisfy the troubles of the coronavirus pandemic as well as manage their employer-staff relations perfectly will be the kinds surviving this world scourge.


The author is the Chief Government officer of Jobberman Ghana, a leading on line occupation work portal presently furnishing cost-free listings to aid businesses publicize to the proper candidates in Ghana.  

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