Tips to overcome the impact of coronavirus on hiring and talent acquisition

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is disrupting hiring practices and working environments at companies of all sizes. Managers and HR departments are getting creative to keep business running smoothly, while implementing widespread changes to the hiring process.

Whether you’re hiring as normal, or need a sudden influx of temporary workers to support outbreak-related response needs, here are a few ways companies can adapt to a changing employment landscape.

Video tools for interviews and meetings

Many companies rely on platforms like Zoom or Skype, when needed, to conduct day-to-day business. But both job seekers and hiring managers should expect to utilize these tools heavily if travel and in-person meetings become restricted while the situation becomes contained, especially if there are large employee bases in regions most heavily impacted by the virus.

Remote work capabilities

Working from home may become the new standard as companies work to avoid spreading the virus in compact office spaces. Managers, hiring leaders, employees and even job seekers should anticipate leaning on platforms that allow for collaborative work. SharePoint, Google Docs, Microsoft Teams or Slack, and Dropbox are popular examples of how file-sharing and communicating can remain effective. These tools accommodate real-time edits and instant feedback, replicating in-person meetings and conversations.

Recruiting at a distance

With a reliance on video tools, phone calls and remote work, hiring could start to feel less personal. One way to prevent or lessen that effect is to promote and maximize your employee referral program, while tapping into a talent network or candidate pool you might have. Generally, these are going to be past employees, friends or family of current employees, and applicants who might have not been a perfect fit for a previous job but are great candidates nonetheless. Empower your employees to share on their social media channels about their employment experience, and reach out to past applicants via email or phone, to optimize your remote recruiting process.

Support and retain current employees

Only 55% of workers have access to paid time off, and many hourly workers – in industries like hospitality and food service – lack protections outside of their hours on the clock. These employees tend to be lower income and will be hit the hardest without remote work options and the ability to physically work.

Companies can work to understand the layers of challenges their workers might face in this situation, from not feeling encouraged to take time off to simply not being able to do so. In addition to providing hand sanitizer and wipes to reduce germs, and adapting to a remote work policy, organizations should consider temporary policies and programs to protect hourly workers from less time on the clock.

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