People Save You – From D(r)ownturn!

How HR Can save you from down turn

Table of Contents

Organization is People… Only People can help in the time of need. Let’s look at how you can build the recession proof People initiatives… especially Startups SME businesses.

The news of slowdown always BAD news… but let’s turn this to be GOOD news, to reshape our Startup Small Mid enterprises!

There is enough awareness among people, in terms of the impact of economic slowdown and how large enterprises are crumbling due to unforeseen pressures. Basically, today every employee is conscious of the impact of changes in environment. If the organization is not sustainable, people are bound to get effected.

Based on the 18 years of experience we have in helping people for Startup SME businesses at Husys, we are listing a few important aspects of People you may like to consider adopting into your own business, with modifications, to suit to your organizational culture.

We start building people and, consequently, inefficiencies when business is good and growing. However, a close look at the productivity per employee is very important point to consider at the Unit level and its impact on the overall business.

Warning: Apply any of these inputs based on your reality, practicality for your business & industry and the stage of your organization.

Employee Hiring: Most Important Activity of Any Organization, at ALL Times!

  • Hire, only if it is a Must
  • Hire for the duration required through outsourced model with an option to absorb if things are good in future.
  • Try and hire people on third party rolls to help de-risk long-term liabilities.
  • Reduce Internal Recruitment Team & Subscription to Job boards, (typically high cost), but, take captive one or two good Recruitment Consultants as partners who can provide just in time as per above model. Pay them an adjustable retainer/advance based on your forecast, so that your investment is lower and commitment is assured from the consultants. Use Apprentice and Project-based students/experts. Or from any institutions which have people specialised into HR and assign a task with an internal professor as the key point of contact. It helps greatly!

Employee Communication: During Times of Challenge, Communication Can Be a Great Tool. 

  • Share your take on the Impact on company and the Industry in general
  • Seek their ideas to improve efficiencies & innovative ways to stay afloat. Employee Suggestions can be in the areas of Business, Operational expenses, Growth etc.,
  • Action the workable ideas, implement and communicate the impact back to teams. Speed of action is very important.
  • Appreciate people/teams who contributed for the cause. Conscious rewarding is a choice.

Employee Costs: Employee and Related Costs Are the Worry, based on the industry.
While Services has huge employee cost at a range of 30-85%, manufacturing companies may vary from 3% to 25%. Here is what you may consider as options unless that’s going to hit your bottom-line significantly. Just cutting down on employee cost is not really useful.

If your employee cost is not really impacting on bottom-line, as an impacting element or EBIDTA, do not work on cutting down, but, focus on building efficiency!

  • Identify: The cost of Employees & Workers and related costs like salaries, travel, conveyance, reimbursements, bonuses, incentives, temp workers, Buyback of ESOPS etc.
  • Assess: Review what are an absolute MUST and what can be differed. Also, assess the employee level cost in relation to the revenue contribution. Any non-direct revenue contributions can be identified with link to enhance/efficient revenue opportunities.
  • Execute: Find alternative for each cost, based on short-term and long-term impact, then execute the plan.

Employee Contributions: One of the best ways in a sustainable organization, is to review contributions and enhance contribution of each and every employee from the Lowest to Highest Person in Hierarchy.

  • Help each employee review their contribution by asking them to pen down the activities and the time taken to output. Also enquire what they would like to do more?
  • Assess the competency and identify any untapped/latent competency which can be used to assign to make the role more meaningful.
  • Identify similar competency based jobs; merge and enhance the role for each employee. Make sure you/Managers help them adjust to new opportunity/ies.

Employee Collaboration: When Faced with Business Challenge, Collaboration Between the Employees Helps Immensely!

  • Create key employee groups to bringing about changes and suggestions that would help in any of the above areas. Bring diversity of group so that new ideas can be generated and Implemented.
  • Any short-term jobs important for Organization can be assembled with multiple division employees and execute. Dismantle at regular intervals after the key output is generated.
  • These areas may be in Training, new opportunity projects, Research, Testing Ideas etc.,

Employee Technology: The Key to Sustainable Employee Efficiency and Their Services is Through Technology. 
If you are probably less than 50 employees, you may consider running the HR Department on Technology without tagging anyone as HR.

  • Technology really helps Startup SME’s in building Their culture which is the responsibility of the CEO and the senior Management and not HR.
  • Identify the areas where use and introduction of Technology can improve efficiency & Cost Optimization. Possibilities will be plenty in Hiring, People Management, Performance & Development…
  • Identify the right CLOUD tools Open Source, HRMS Free Versions or Cost effective HRMS Tools for SSME’s that are available in market and start implementing.
  • Usually the HRTech/HRCloud tools build efficiencies and release time of current resources from 20-40%, at a minimum, which can be productively used elsewhere with role enhancement/multiplication.
  • There is no better time than these situations to implement Technology in your business.

Finally Remember

Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed.

Similarly, Employee in Need is Employee Indeed!



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