The recent outbreak of COVID-19 has led many companies across the world to shift to work from home model. While some companies like IT, e-commerce, etc. are impressively coping up with the situation. Have you wondered how the manufacturing and retail industry is coping up with the situation?
With the world locking inside their houses, we had a chance to interact with Raymond, one of India’s largest fabric and fashion retailers, and understand how it is managing the new novel of working- work from home.
The Problem Statement
Due to the recent pandemic, the workforce at Raymond had to make a shift to work from home. About 40 percent of the population in manufacturing, 30 percent in corporate offices and 30 percent in store front end and on-field, work from home was a new normal for Raymond.
Transitioning into a work from the home model was a novel idea for the leading Indian lifestyle textile and branded apparel company.
Change Management: How Raymond is leading the new ways of working
The company set out the guiding principles to approach the situation and put in a place the three key levers to enable an end-to-end experience for its employees:
The ‘Care’ lever addresses the communication management system between the employees and the company for the smooth functioning of work from the home model.
The ‘Performance’ lever aimed at setting clear targets to encourage employees to be productive. Within this lever, leaders identified various projects that can be planned and delivered from working remotely. This also included defining and clarifying roles, performance expectations, and goals.
‘Learning’ was one of the priority areas for Raymond even during the lockdown period and hence, its third lever, ‘Enablement’ allows employees to hone their skills and competencies through virtual knowledge sharing, webinars conducted by internal leaders, etc.
Here is the quick glance at Raymond’s three-level work from home model:
Making the transition: The first few days
As per the model, the company defined safety, a non-negotiable element. And as and when the lockdown was announced, the HR team formed a Quick Response Team (QRT). The entire situation was assessed and what mattered the most was safety of the employees.
Business Unit Cells were set up for any kind of first-responder situations. The employees were given direct access to report anything to their closest HR business partners. This served as a base of the organization’s priority and directly addressed the second but last layer of Maslow’s hierarchy, which reassured employees their safety is Raymond’s prime concern.
With safety in check, we embarked on the journey of Care, Enablement and Performance as our north-star to enhance employee experience @ home.
- More than 80 percent employees are virtually connected to attend knowledge sharing sessions. Excellent response for this, which is visible in a happiness quotient, averaging at 98 percent.
- Each HOD (all DGM and above leaders) are religiously participating in Weekly Connect to engage with their teams.
- Employees participated in engagement activities that include fitness series, yoga series. The pics and feedback images resonate the acceptance towards these connects.
The company will continue to take precautionary measures so that it can keep working with a lower risk factor and simultaneously take necessary measures to maintain the workforce’s safety.
The company is currently and regularly re-evaluating how the teams within the corporation will collaborate and how it can adapt to new working styles as the lockdown extends.