2022 started in a way that many business owners and managers hoped it wouldn’t – employees isolating, working remotely, and in some industries, revenue hit hard.
While many had hoped the disruptions caused by COVID were becoming a distant memory during the final months of 2021, reality kicked in and made many of us realise that we may not even be halfway through the pandemic.
Unfortunately, this means that if you haven’t optimised your business for a continuation of remote working, you are going to be outperformed by those businesses that have.
The reason for this is that they will be able to recruit higher performing staff (especially during the current labour shortage), their employees will be better supported and therefore engaged, and they will be placing the right people in management positions. It goes beyond just setting up a Microsoft Teams account!
People Analytics provide a powerful, cost-effective, and easy way to boost the performance of your organisation during this difficult period and to maximise the success of remote working. They can be implemented into every component of your people management strategy to overcome the obstacles faced by remote working and COVID related disruptions.
The nature of remote working, and the lack of appropriate candidates currently in the job market for many roles, necessitates a more remote and agile form of recruitment. Whether sourcing candidates inter-state or internationally, or the reluctance of employers and candidates to interview face-to-face, a remote recruitment process can potentially reduce the amount of information you receive from the candidate.
Implementing the following can make this process much easier:
- Skills Testing: testing candidates on their skills and knowledge as the first step of the screening process ensures you are only progressing applicants who can do the job. It can be done entirely online and negates the requirement to do a work trial or in person test.
- Video Interview Questions: developing and administering pre-recorded video questions and requesting your applicants respond with a video response is an easier, and more engaging method of screening applicants, and can result in a more positive candidate experience. It also makes it easier for hiring managers as they conduct less interviews (therefore reducing potential exposures) and make less screening calls.
- Psychometric Testing: psychometric testing of shortlisted applicants has many advantages, including more accurate candidate differentiation, greater information on candidate’s abilities and behaviours, greater understanding of role requirements and more data-driven and effective interview questions. It overcomes limitations associated with conducting online interviews and promotes more objective and successful decisions, and can be used to construct more targeted and appealing job advertisements that capture the attention of the best candidates.
Employee Development and Engagement
Remote working affects each employee differently. Some absolutely thrive on it and prefer it to coming into the office, whereas others dislike it due to reduced structure, guidance, social opportunities, and availability of managers.
Psychometric testing and engagement surveys can assist in identifying which employees are more likely to thrive under remote arrangements, each employee’s unique training requirements, and opportunities for development without having to step foot into an office building.
- Psychometric Testing can be administered to existing employees, and their results compared to role benchmarks to identify the key areas to focus on for development. Their managers receive targeted suggestions which can be easily implemented within a remote working environment for greater employee performance and engagement. This testing is also useful to identify those employees who are more likely to thrive in a remote environment (typically, we have found they have higher levels of Independence, Resilience and Attitude) and those who are less likely to, so you know which employees require more assistance, guidance, and support during difficult time periods.
- Engagement and Wellbeing Surveys can be administered as a means to check in on the culture, happiness, and general wellbeing of employees. Results can be tracked over time to identify improvements, and qualitative feedback provided can be used for deeper insights.
Having a whole team work remotely can make it more difficult to identify future managers and leaders of the organisation, as you cannot witness them interacting with others firsthand. Administering psychometric testing to potential future leaders will identify their leadership potential both online and in-person and provide you with the information you need to make the right decision.
It is natural for many leaders to feel a bit lost and overwhelmed when their whole team is remote. We have found the use of 360-degree surveys to be highly useful to leadership teams in their ongoing development, as it provides valuable feedback from employees on what they should keep doing, stop doing, and start doing. This guidance removes a lot of ambiguity associated with remote working and therefore makes it easier for them to know how to manage their teams remotely.
We hope the above has provided some good insight into how People Analytics can assist your organisation in working remotely and successfully.
If you would like to explore or look at implementing any of these tools within your own organisation, please get in contact with our team and we would love to assist.