Shout out to all Rewards pros

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Impact of COVID on Total Rewards in 2021 and beyond

What I believe – work and career in C&B

Why I love Comp



Hello and welcome to this episode of Compensation Insider. Today, I want to express my gratitude and my recognition to all the Reward pros out there. I think we deserve it.

Remember your achievements since March 2020

For the past 18 months, you have battled the impact of COVID on the workforce, getting involved in business continuity planning, more health and safety than you ever thought you’d ever be working on, furloughs, reductions in force, and the sudden move to remote work.

You’ve had to cancel, substantially amend, or fully redesign incentives in the face of extraordinary pandemic-induced growth in some industries, or complete melt down in others.

You also had to consider changes to executive pay, trying to strike a balance between keeping them motivated and sharing the burden of the pandemic with the other stakeholders of the organization, including shareholders and employees.

You battled through reduced or non-existent bonus, salary and promotion budgets in 2020, all to now in 2021, be faced with pressure to provide new market pay levels in a job market which is volatile and completely different than what it was even just one year ago.

Not to mention reviewing health insurance provisions, to ensure protection for your staff. And now in some cases, trying to incentivize that same staff to get the vaccine. You’ve deployed telehealth and mental health provisions, as well as education and support for employees whose financial safety, besides their health, was threatened by the virus.

Talking of which, many of you also had to reconsider your grieving policies as well as life insurance provisions.

And now that the Great Resignation is upon us and that employees across the world reevaluate their relationship to work, you have to identify your employee segments that are most at flight risk, revamp referral schemes, implement new retention schemes and participate in efforts to bring engagement up. Recognition schemes anyone?

The crucial role of Total Rewards in the months and years to come

Soon, you will have to participate in proper Return To Work, Next Normal or New World Of Work planning, trying to adapt how your company pays and rewards a combination of fully onsite, hybrid, remote, and work-from-anywhere staff.

What kind of pay philosophies will you adopt? Nobody really knows.

The past 18 months have also been a rollercoaster. In some companies it was a revelation. They discovered that, “So, Comp and Ben is not just a geek aspect of HR!!! It truly is embedded in all the challenges that the organization is facing and supporting the adaptation of its strategy”.

In other companies the status of C&B as one of the more strategic aspects of HR was confirmed.

The coming months will continue to be crucial as the world tries to move on to a new situation. The world will not be the same as 2019. Even if some managers or some companies convince employees to all come back to the office, employees have tasted some of the advantages of working remotely. In the famous words of Dan Pink, “autonomy, mastery, and purpose” will become more important than ever.

If your organization tries to pretend that the parenthesis is closed and it didn’t have an impact, expect to see your best people leave to join employers who value their input and give them some degree of freedom over how they organize their time and work – because after all, are we paying for bums on seats or for outputs? – and, more importantly, companies that have understood that their values, mission, and purpose are more important than ever to gain the full support and engagement of their staff. You will help bring this alignment to the greater vision in the incentives and rewards that you will design.

Your role as Total Rewards professionals has never been so crucial. When you look back on this moment in a few years, you will surely define this period as one of the most exhilarating, exhausting and defining periods in your career.

Now more than ever, exchanging ideas with your peers will feed your thinking, expand your horizon, and hopefully help you sort through the maze of experiments and potential solutions that you might consider for your organization.

So please call that former colleague that you trust, or that old boss of yours. Join or become active again in local or LinkedIn groups, chapters of your HR or Reward association of choice, or even WhatsApp communities.  You won’t regret it !

And I hope to see you next week. Thank you very much and all the best to all the Reward pros.

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