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The Alliance’s Action Steps are designed to assist organizations with implementing practical strategies and policies related to diversity and flexibility. Members can access full versions of all of the Alliance’s Action Steps in the Member Resource Center

Organizations and employees have faced significant struggles during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, one positive that’s developed from the pandemic is that many organizations, even those historically against flexible work, have adjusted to employees working remotely and flexibly. Now is the time to collect data and build a business case for flexible work to continue after the pandemic ends. Monitor experiences and measure employee productivity, satisfaction, and effectiveness to understand what worked and what didn’t in order to pave the way for the future of flexible work:

  1. Survey to Understand Experiences & Needs. Survey employees to collect data around flexible work during the pandemic. The survey should include questions specific to why things worked or why they didn’t so you can make improvements: What types of technology would have made remote work smoother? Did supervisors help balance work and personal obligations? Did managers maintain connections during this time? By gathering this type of data, you can make changes, as necessary, to improve employee productivity and effectiveness. You’ll also have a better understanding of challenges specific to the pandemic so you can address these matters with flexible work skeptics. For example, if an organizational leader states that hours were down in his/her department, you’ll be able to show this was related to less work available in that area due to the pandemic rather than issues with telecommuting. 

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To read this entire Action Step become a member of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. To further discuss ways to collect and use data during the pandemic, contact Manar Morales

The Alliance’s Action Steps are designed to assist organizations with implementing practical strategies and policies related to diversity and flexibility.  Members can access full versions of all of the Alliance’s Action Steps in the Member Resource Center

TAKING THE PULSE OF YOUR WORKFORCE

Before launching any initiative to promote or improve diversity or flexibility within an organization, it’s important to ensure you’re solving for the right problem. That is, rather than rushing to apply the latest industry best practice, the initiative should be tailored to address the particular needs of your organization with input from those who will be impacted. In addition to tracking a variety of workforce metrics, the Alliance recommends seeking that input in a systematic and meaningful way by engaging in one or more of the following three information gathering processes.

Surveys: Conducting engagement or climate surveys can provide a rich set of data points to understand the perception of a variety of diversity, flexibility, and/or other cultural issues within an organization, including what’s going well. These surveys typically take the form of an online questionnaire featuring a series of multiple choice questions for quantitative analysis, as well as a few open-ended questions to allow participants to comment about a specific topic or a range of topics covered by the survey. When developing the questionnaire, the organization should limit inquiry to areas it is prepared to address. Surveying without follow-up action can contribute to low participation in future surveys and even increased frustration among employees due to skepticism about the organization’s commitment to addressing the issues about which it asks…

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