Importance of an HR Department in Business Continuity Planning
A “business continuity plan” (BCP) is a process that outlines the potential impact of disaster situations, creates policies to respond to them and helps businesses recover quickly so they can function as quickly as possible, as normally possible in unusual scenarios similar to that of COVID-19.
In times of crisis, many businesses will be challenged to safeguard and support employees while continuing to deliver the services needed to keep the business operational and revenue flowing. During this period, HR will be the very first point of contact for many employees. It is often the case that HR departments are overrun with queries from concerned employees. Anxiety takes over the majority of the work force due to uncertainties surrounding the unusual situations.
So, what can the HR department do during this time of uncertainty?
1. Plan, Plan, Plan and Plan Again. Business continuity plans should be developed, rehearsed, tested, accessible, well in advance
HR departments, should not wait until the disaster strikes, there should be a well documented and a practical business continuity plan / policy defined well in advance. From an HR perspective, employees must be clear on what they should do in case the business continuity plan is kicked into action. Employees should be given ongoing training, who to contact when to contact, where to contact, in case a Business Continuity Event is triggered. HR should be able to guide the employees from where they will be working, how they will get paid, what hours they are expected to work and how they can communicate with colleagues and management during this time of uncertainty.
2. Be open to use technology to support employee engagement
Using cloud-based HR software can help HR departments, a great deal, in terms of data access and data security. The data will always be available on the go, there are no special VPN access requirements, or special license to procure, so there is indeed a silver lining, in using cloud based technology. Also, you can ensure work force is comfortable, with using tools like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, to communicate with each other and provide updates, again these tools have mobile apps, which run on all platforms, reducing telecom costs and increasing open channels to communicated with each othre within the organization. With technology, your HR department will be able to continue to support employees and provide required services. More important be engaged.
3. Accessibility and Security of HR Data
It is important that HR data is kept safe and secure during this crisis period, as it contains highly confidential personal information like passport number, bank accounts etc. Importantly it is also important to keep data updated, as this data can be helpful, while arranging for repatriation flights, special assistance from embassies or consulates worldwide, in case your employees are stranded abroad and not at usual work place location. Unexpected telecom outages, can restrict ability to access data over a vpn, floods, earthquakes can destroy all the paper information, so it is better to host the HR data in a highly secure environment, preferably a private or public cloud.
4. Reassure and encourage your employees after this unexpected event, be there for your employees
It is important that your employees are well informed about the current situation and what is expected from them in future. Keep an eye on each employee, if their morale is down, then provide them with necessity support or counselling for the same. Sometime crisis may change the business budgets and procedures, in such cases employees may need to relocate or assign the different role to support the business. Be there for your employees, they need you now, more than anything else, as HR you should keep a transparent communication channel at all times.
During times of uncertainty and unusual situations, HR Chronicle – The leading Cloud based HR and Payroll Software, is always there to help you get through tough times and beyond. Also, features like the employee Self-service and Mobile App will make the employee engagement much reliable and easier and faster.
HR Chronicle is a leading Cloud Based HR and Payroll Software, we have served our customers since 2006 that’s when the very first version of HR Chronicle came out, HR Chronicle is available in 2 flavors, Cloud Based and On Premise. To know more give us a shout, we will happy to discuss more.