As the old adage goes, time heals all wounds. It also deceptively allows most people to look back on harder times with rose tinted glasses. The initial COVID pandemic was, for most HR leaders, a time of great struggle, when decisions had to be made instantaneously and implementing strategy happened on the turn of a dime.
From the move to remote working for office-based workers, to ensuring that staff were able to carry out their jobs with minimal threat of catching the virus and navigating the Government’s furlough guidance, it was a time of upheaval.
However, HR is a forward-thinking function. It’s likely that many HR leaders returned from the pandemic looking to make up for precious lost time. But does this mean that, in the haste to put the distressing past behind us, many didn’t take heed of the warnings that future illnesses could arise?
Today's Top Stories
- 'Clearly banter' | HR worker sues employer for asking him who 'would be in his threesome'
- 'Shake it off' | Inspiration for HR professionals from Taylor Swift as she's named Time's Person of the Year 2023
- DE&I | The fundamental keys to honing a diverse talent pool
- Big Interview | Katie Warrington, Head of HR Services, Volkswagen Financial Services UK
- Work Culture | How to create and sustain a resilient and healthy working culture
Worryingly, we may soon find out. Covid-19 cases are, according to the WHO, once again in a period of increase. Two new variants, BA.2.86 and EG.5, have already been discovered around the world, including in the US and UK.
When COVID-19 blindsided the world in 2020, businesses and workers were caught off guard. Only 45% of companies had a pandemic response as part of their business continuity plans before December 2019. 75% of companies were having to make, or had made, changes to their business continuity plans in relation to COVID-19, according to data from Michael Page.
Today, many find themselves in a more resilient position, having forged a blueprint for navigating the uncertain terrain of a pandemic.
Of those with 10,000 staff or more, 29% didn’t have any business continuity plan in place with a pandemic response. In comparison, 63% of companies with staff levels between 1,000 – 4,999 failed to include a pandemic response in their business continuity plan.