In today's rapidly changing world of business, organizations that thrive have one thing in common: carefully cultivated agility. Agility refers to the ability to effectively adapt and respond to changes in the marketplace such as mergers and acquisitions, consumer demand changes, labor shortages, remote work environments and others. Every business, no matter their widget or industry, has dealt with significant and often unforeseen change over the last year. Those that adapted well to become stronger and better on the other side of those changes have mastered the art of being agile – and you can too.
How to Achieve Agility
There is a good amount of recent research on the topic of business agility that tells us exactly what we need to do to elasticize our organizations. For example, researchers Elaine Pulakos and Rob Kaiser have uncovered a surprising key to agility – that key is stability. This research shows that when companies achieve stability, employees trust their leaders and feel safe in their jobs. This psychological state of stability builds a foundation upon which employees are better prepared to be flexible when needed. In short, organizational stability increases organizational trust which in turn increases organizational agility.
How do we achieve stability? One way is to make sure that employees have all of the resources they need to succeed at their jobs. At minimum, you need to have systems and technology in place to proactively support your workforce. HR systems, for example, should make it easy for your employees to access their schedules, payroll data, time off balances and other essential information that impacts their wellbeing. Further, these systems should embrace automation and integrate effectively into your business’ overall information ecosystem so that managers have the data needed in real-time to make effective decisions.
Just think about the negative ramifications a simple schedule change can have when employees and managers don’t have stable, proactive systems to support them: an employee calls in. Their manager scrambles to find a replacement but must first determine who is available, has the skills to do the needed work, hasn’t worked their hours for the week, etc. The manager then contacts a few replacement options, but those employees don’t remember their schedules for the rest of the week - or perhaps they are scheduled for PTO and want to know how their balances will be impacted if they commit to taking the shift. By the time the situation is resolved, everyone involved is stressed and the organization has lost hours of productivity. There is a better way.
Stable, proactive systems and processes give employees what they need when they need it, thereby controlling change of all magnitudes and insulating the organization and your employees from any negative ripple effects that it can cause.
Stable Workforce Management Systems
An important component to ensuring your workforce management systems are stable is using a Software as a Service (SaaS) model. We specifically work with UKG Dimensions, a platform that covers time, attendance, leave, advanced scheduling, and more. Other key features of Dimensions include:
- Automatic software updates & upgrades, disaster recovery, risk assessment, backup, and proactive compliance
- Automated scheduling to give managers and employees control, even from their phones
- Predictive AI and machine learning to support your business processes
- Flexible business structures to accommodate organizational change
- Real-time, configurable data views to ensure everyone has the information they need right now
- Open platform design to fully integrate with your business intelligence ecosystem
When the right systems are in place, you have a stable foundation to effectively manage change and increase employee trust. This is the key to building organizational agility.
The WFC Group Can Help
If you need to make changes to your workforce management systems to ensure your organization achieves and maintains agility in today’s marketplace, please contact us for more information. With service offerings ranging from software evaluation to implementation support to change management, we are here to Listen to your needs, Adapt our solutions, and Deliver your success with stable, agile systems and processes today.