Even before Covid-19, advancement in terms of improving the performance management system (PMS) and measuring productivity was well under way. Organisations, all around the world were rethinking and incorporating progressive changes in the PMS, but the pace of progress was slow and incremental.
The current crisis has, however, pushed organisations to think afresh, and quickly. As organisations are grappling with issues like cash crunch, erosion of demand, disruption in supply chain, leaders are forced to look through a cost-conscious lens and go back to the drawing board to redefine their workforce model to come up with solutions to do more with less.
As organisations are changing the way they are operating, new families of roles have emerged, and it is critical now, more than ever, to understand which family would be the ‘best fit’.
A typical organisation today will have roles that are working on site, working full or part time from home, a network of outsourced or managed services vendors, gig roles and the neo gig with 2-3 years of exclusive contract that will no longer be permanent and subsequently move out of solid employment cost.
Organisations are defining the road map of structuring the workforce landscape across these new job families and embracing liquid ways of working to meet fluctuating demands of workplace, while managing employee cost. With the changes in the ways of working, evolution of new families of roles and the new operating model, organisations and managers will need to reassess the way performance and productivity is measured and evaluated.
With the new families of roles and ways of working, there could be some eminent challenges with the traditional PMS that would need to be addressed swiftly.
Other challenges that would have to be addressed are how to mitigate risks of social isolation, restricted observations resulting in limited data points on behavioural development, inadequate performance & development conversations and striking a balance between objective and behavioural assessments. If not addressed, the issues of the new ways of working may lead to dissatisfaction and disengagement.
Given the changes in operating model and shift in priorities of organisations to optimise cost, there is a strong business case to re-think the performance and productivity systems to meet business targets in a sustained manner in the current situation and beyond.
A version of this article was carried by Times of India on 22 July 2020