This is Not Business as Usual.
During the extended restrictions surrounding the global Covid-19 pandemic, it has become increasingly clear that the way we engage in our daily jobs is changing.
Connections and communications are becoming more fluid, networking can be accomplished over a network, continued development doesn't have to mean a classroom.
Even as some workers are starting to return to the office or factory, many other employers are continuing to favour home-based working practices with the numerous financial, environmental impact and staff welfare benefits this brings.
But it has become just as clear that businesses must continue, and indeed, expand their employee engagement schemes throughout this period. While the options for keeping in touch at work, at home and even on the go have increased massively both in terms of technological advancement and business acceptance over the past few months, this has not been a natural progression. While many members of staff may have found this enforced situation suited them, many more will have struggled without the structure, face to face communication and social aspects of the office environment.
But if remote or homebased working is indeed part of a new normal, how can employee engagement schemes be successfully implemented?
One way businesses can engage with and motivate staff during this time of operational change is to encourage continued professional development from the home or remote workplace. Many companies already employ desk-based learning programmes, including CDV Global. But we've always imagined that to our clients, the "desk" could be anywhere.
The nature of our business model means that we work closely with Partner NGOs, clients and volunteers well in advance of their arrival in-country to deliver training. This lead-in time allows us to create the best possible training programme for the NGOs and helps build a relationship between the volunteers and NGOs before they meet face to face.
As the majority of this "pre-departure" phase is completed remotely via online video tutorials with our expert training team, our model fits perfectly with all modes of working, whether office based, on the road or, crucially, home based. This allows the employee to complete the pre-departure phase of our programme from their home office whilst continuing to fit seamlessly with our client's employee engagement, sustainability, CSR or HR processes.
Obligations must be met
Many companies will have sustainability or CSR goals that need to be met, no matter how minor this obligation may seem at this time of difficulty. But continuing with social impact and sustainability activities during the global lockdown will ensure that companies meet their targets and enhance their reputations at a time when it would be easy to understand if an organisation chose to "close ranks" and concentrate purely on "their own"
By choosing to engage in a long term Corporate Employee Volunteer programme with CDV Global, engaging your staff in remote learning programmes from wherever your business needs them to be at this time, you can seamlessly fit these activities into your social impact reporting, meeting targets on employee engagement, carbon footprint, social responsibility and other sustainability goals.
It is more crucial to support these organisations than ever before
As plans are put in place for moving beyond the restrictions and allowing businesses to fully operate, it will be easy to forget the huge impact of COVID-19 in the rush to return to "business as usual". Economically and socially, the poorest across the globe; those least able to protect themselves from the virus or fight off its effects, have been shown to be those worst hit.
In many cases it will be the small rural NGOs across the planet that will be at the forefront of assisting their communities to recover and go on to help build better futures. It's vital, more than it ever was before, that we are ready to support them in their aims. The best way we can do that is to make sure that they have access to the knowledge and experience they require to confidently go forward and make transformative change.
To support them we need experienced professionals to share knowledge with them, and we need to plan ahead now to be ready.
The safety our clients, volunteers, partners and the CDV Global Team will always be our very first priority. But the current restrictions and changes in working practices allow us a rare moment of time. Time to plan ahead to support staff, meet obligations and make a real impact.
CDV Global is an international training organisation that works with rural NGOs in developing nations and experienced professional volunteers from across the globe to implement a bespoke programme of learning and engagement that positively impacts thousands of those most in need. If you are interested in engaging your staff in meaningful professional development programmes that make a real difference, please get in touch.