Restructuring is a unique opportunity and a challenge in itself, both for HR leaders and employees. The underlying challenge is striking a delicate balance between maximizing business gains and minimizing risks to the employee’s general well-being. Today, we will take a deep dive into ways to maintain a human-centered approach to this highly sensitive process.
While layoffs and low morale are common results of corporate restructuring, it is an inevitable part of every growing business. Adjusting the organization and its strategy to changing market conditions has a substantial influence on its cost-effectiveness and future adaptability. Improving internal communication, collaboration, and management of resources is another benefit of a well-planned organizational restructuring.
With recent focus shifts toward employee well-being, restructuring is taking on a more humane approach. More and more companies drop on-the-spot decision-making and lean towards more careful planning as the restructuring involves significant aspects of employee experience: management methods, training, organizational growth, benefits, and compensation.
One of the key tools available in this new era is technology, which can help companies and organizations manage this change in a more orderly and transparent manner. As it allows the management to access the information regarding the impact that the change has on collective psychological well-being and beyond.
As employees commonly experience a range of emotions during restructuring, including anxiety, stress, and feelings of loss, it is essential to handle this process mindfully to minimize negative impacts and support the individuals affected by it.
HR leaders in charge of overseeing and directing the business through the restructuring process should pay special attention to three main areas: communication, management, and culture. We’ve included a short list of recommendations for each aspect below.
Be upfront and honest. Employees deserve to know the reasons for restructuring and the expected outcomes. Attempt to explain things in an approachable and transparent way to reduce ambiguity and develop trust.
Set the tone. Prepare and deliver a unified message and vision for change.
Communicate non-stop. Develop a clear, proactive communication strategy to share relative information with the employees and ensure collective awareness of the process. Regular updates help smooth the rough edges, and maintain the consistency that is important for decreasing stress and anxiety.
Promote open dialogue. It would greatly facilitate bridging the gap between the management and the employee perspectives, expectations, and concerns. Engage workers to reduce the workload or solicit ideas for reorganizing the workplace and employees’ roles within it.
Navigate the change. Guide the employees taking up new job roles and responsibilities during the restructuring. It’s important to clarify what each employee’s new job will entail. Where appropriate, encourage employees to take advantage of training and development opportunities that can help them prepare for new positions.
Offer support and resources. Employees may experience stress as a result of a company’s restructuring efforts; thus, you should provide them with appropriate tools and assistance during the period. This can include counseling services, career coaching, and other activities.
Seek outside help if needed. You may want to bring in outside experts with experience in organizational restructuring if the task at hand is particularly complex or challenging. Also, consider a more technologically driven approach employing tools like Performica to facilitate the process.
Be fair and consistent. When making decisions about layoffs or job changes, use objective criteria, such as performance metrics.
Beware of the long-term impact. Consider long-term objectives and anticipated results while making restructuring decisions. Find out if they are sustainable long-term and how they will help the company grow in the future.
Be compassionate. Employees may find restructuring difficult, so it’s essential to be attentive to how they feel, respond, and cope. Listen to their concerns and address them to the best of your ability.
Foster a positive culture. Though restructuring is a lengthy process, remember to celebrate the small wins along the way. It will help to maintain a sense of community and keep employees’ engagement and motivation levels up.
Once you’ve addressed these three primary issues, the reorganization process will go at a steady, well-managed pace. As a result, it will transform the organization into a more sustainable and successful one with an ever-stronger and more resilient community of employees.