HR Daily

This week's top stories in brief

03 April 2020 12:09pm

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Research on the first wave of workforce cost-cutting measures in the wake of COVID-19 shows which steps employers are prioritising. Also in this article, how HR can help managers maintain performance amid uncertainty; and business groups welcome support to retain employees.


The organisations that emerge strongest from the current economic crisis will be those that zero in on the most pressing issues while staying true to their longer-term vision and purpose, says Ephraim Patrick, partner, people strategy and analytics at Mercer Pacific. "At the backend of this crisis new business models emerge and the question is 'are you and your partners and suppliers ready to become the nexus of an ecosystem that's built for this new normal?'"


Qantas is facing an investigation into whether it engaged in discriminatory conduct when it stood down a worker who raised concerns about COVID-19. And the Fair Work Commission is proposing to add pandemic leave and other provisions into a number of awards.

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Today's challenging times call for leaders with high emotional intelligence to guide their teams to deliver results, says WM consulting MD Ban Weston. "With this change, [leaders] need to become a lot more emotionally intelligent as they provide employees with a sense of normality and drive productivity to deliver business results."


The focus of employer branding during a crisis must be on existing employees, and many organisations might struggle to recalibrate their brand to remain relevant, says Peak Corporate Solutions director Malcolm Peak. Branding might have taken a backseat to more pressing issues, but this will need to change quickly, or organisations risk appearing tone-deaf to their new environment.


The job market has shifted quickly in favour of employers in some areas but now is absolutely not the time to relax efforts to provide a good candidate experience, says PageUp's head of market research and insights Rebecca Skilbeck. "Even if you're putting your recruitment process on hold, we are going to come out the other side of this and then those candidates will need to make choices about who they want to work with."

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