Workflows and Mapping Process
In these uncertain times when the Canadian dollar pales in comparison with the almighty U.S. dollar, all canadian companies must operate at optimal levels in order to weather the economic storm. Cutting down on the workforce however often leads into a downward spiral.
A thorough restructuration cannot be taken lightly; such a massive project requires an in-depth analysis of the organization’s internal processes and commercial practices.
When a company faces hard times, uncertainty and doubt can spread rapidly to employees and easily undermine the workplace.
After all, such an optimization must imply staff cuts!
The issue lies not in the number of employees but in the clarity of their tasks and job descriptions.
Adopting a new direction in order to streamline the business can worsen the situation if employees are not directly implicated in this decision. Resignations, clinical depression and lowered productivity never fail to appear during badly-communicated reengineerings.
An immediate investment of this nature might seem unjustifiable but the end result might save the business from bankruptcy and even help engender new profits.
First step : a precise mapping of every workflow and procedure currently in effect within your organization.
This step allows us to compare the facts with the perception of employees and managers. Mapping each position and the corresponding tasks usually reveals an imbalance or redundancy which needs to be corrected.
Concrete decisions can then be made once reality has been properly analyzed and put to paper.
Once we know what the problems are, we can more easily adjust the intra- and inter- departmental processes and adapt to the quantifiable reality which the organization faces.
Before implementing any changes, each deparment lead must be met and interviewed in regards to the new direction the company aims for. This allows adjustments taking in consideration the most crucial resource of any organization : the employees. Once all departments are consulted and are on-board, the message and vision can then be spread to all employees.
It is quasi-impossible to get it right the first time, moreso if the process implies a human factor. This is why Key Performance indices (KPI) and constant vigilance must be employed in order to keep a critical and precise view on the reality of the implementation.
Allowing space and time for adjustments at the beginning of the process changes the perspective and dedramatizes failure in a major way. A rigid plan which does not take into consideration the unpredictability of human affairs is a plan that is bound to fail.
The importance of HR in the process.
The Human Resources Department is, by definition, more neutral when it comes to the organization’s performance. This is why the restructuration should stem from the HRD in order to ensure maximum flexibility.
The collaboration of the HRD with the company’s direction goes both ways; just as the managers can consult the HRD to suggest adjustments and submit new ideas, the HRD will keep a finger on the pulse of the workforce for the length of the process and transmit the relevant information back to the managers.
An organization’s restructuration will generate strong emotional reactions from every employee. Some of the staff will feel the need to express their uncertainty without filters. Expressing one’s emotions directly to the managers might create tensions and potentially ruin the climate of the work place. It is imperative that this verbalization is channeled in a constructive manner with the help of the HRD, all while letting employees confide and vent their frustrations, both of which are entirely justified.
Do these words evoke your current employer? Do not hesitate to discuss this issue with them and with us!
For more information on the subject and to see how EspaceRH can help your organization, follow this link.