Freedom: The supreme tool HR can offer employees
Source | www-peoplematters-in.cdn.ampproject.org | People Matters Editorial Team
“We must be free not because we claim freedom, but because we practice it.” – William Faulkner
Fighting the same enemies, the crisis, the economic burden, the job shifts, the fear, the uncertainty, and more, one thing we all realised is the power of freedom. Isolated in our respective spaces, almost disconnected from the world, we learnt the value of people and relationships. Working and thriving in our respective jobs free from the binds of the ‘tried & tested’ modes of work, we experienced more freedom. And now, eighteen months later, when we have witnessed the great positive impact of this freedom on employee well-being, efficiency and business, we must continue to practice it.
So how can an organisation, the HR, and its leaders offer freedom to employees to lead a more balanced and meaningful life?
Freedom from bureaucracy
Gone are the days when structures and systems were set in stone. The last 18 months have in particular shown us that only systems that are flexible, adaptable, and malleable can survive the black swan events like the pandemic. With the world going nimble and digital, HR cannot toe the old bureaucratic ways of working and be set in its systems. HR needs to give employees easy access to information they need, using systems and technologies that are consumer friendly. It’s high time that in a shape shifting world, HR gives its employees freedom from the bastions of bureaucracy to enable them to work in an agile, flexible, and unencumbered way!
Freedom from bias
More so than ever, three key words have become a crucial part of the goals set by HR leaders for their organisations: diversity, inclusion and belonging. All of these serve to reinforce a workplace culture that is open and accommodating of people coming from diverse backgrounds and catering to their specific needs and concerns. There is greater awareness of not just opening channels of employment to people irrespective of who they are and where they come from but also removing any biases that might seep in even in development and retention stages of the employment cycle. With the acceleration of paths to digital transformation undertaken by organisations in light of the pandemic, HR leaders are caught up in a data-driven world. By taking advantage of this increased access to data at every level of operation, strategies can be developed to ensure that people within organisations feel seen, heard, can approach leadership for any challenges they might face and most importantly, feel that they are part and parcel of the cultural fabric of their organisation. This channels greater employee engagement and enhances their wellbeing.