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Few global events have dramatically transformed the world of work as the COVID-19 crisis. Perhaps the most critical issue to the modern workforce, its impact will be felt for some time. Along the way, the pandemic placed our HR teams in the middle of enormous change. And today, HR departments lie at the heart of the transformation. Indeed, we’re watching and living the evolution of HR — in real-time.
While keeping dispersed teams motivated and engaged, how will HR teams keep up with the change still happening in workplaces every day? How will HR work with leadership to drive oh-so-needed successful business transformations? What will we change first… and how will we make it last?
Our Guest: Lisa Dodman, Chief People Officer at Unit4
On #WorkTrends this week, the Chief People Officer at Unit4, Lisa Dodman, joined us to talk about the change happening in workplaces across the world — and what HR departments can do to lead and enable successful business transformations. Recently, Unit 4 underwent a transformation of its own, renaming its “Human Resources” department “People Success.” All because, as Lisa said, “…we are in business for people. People Success is about putting your people first.” So who better to talk to about the inevitable evolution of HR?
I asked Lisa about the most significant challenge her People Success team has faced since the pandemic began. Lisa told us, “During a pandemic, you must have a ‘people first’ value, front-and-center. We created a focus on safety and wellbeing. We safeguarded jobs while we created practical engagement solutions. And we helped our managers recognize and help employees who may be struggling.”
“Crisis does create opportunity — and we were out there, for our people and their families.”
Evolution of HR: Building a Better Normal
Lisa and I talked about Unit4s award-winning work — and further about their own transformation, including programs like “Freedom of Choice” (including limitless vacation days), “Fit4u,” and “Unit4 Kids.“ I then asked Lisa what HR can do now to build, in her words, a “better normal.” As we wonder how the post-pandemic workplace will take shape, Lisa’s answer made so much sense.
“First, we must put wellbeing at the top of the agenda, where it is needed. Then, post-pandemic, as people return to a better normal, HR must be able to move at speed. The work environment is still rapidly changing; this is not an easy journey.”
“Our role as People Success, or Human Resources, is important: We must help people on that journey.”
Unit4 is living their “people first” value. And I couldn’t be any more impressed.
Is your company, as it looks ahead to a post-pandemic workplace and the evolution of HR, ready to put people first? If not, perhaps you should connect with Lisa on LinkedIn — and start a conversation of your own.
We thank Unit4 for sponsoring this episode of #WorkTrends!