How Modern Technologies Can Help Support COVID-Related Staff Shortages

Andrew Filev, Founder and CEO at Wrike, explores…

After the turmoil and disruption of the last two years, 2022 was supposed to be a year of recovery for organisations. For most, it marked a fresh start and a return to ‘business as usual.’ Despite these high hopes, many are still battling with ongoing staff shortages linked to the virus.

Regardless of whether teams are reduced, businesses still have objectives to meet and customers to serve. With fewer people doing the same amount of work, it’s critical that organisations work smarter. As such, productivity, collaboration, and transparency must be prioritised as part of overall resource management.

Boosting productivity and increasing resilience

It has never been more important for businesses to have full visibility over projects to effectively plan and forecast resource needs against capacity. In turn, they can ensure maximum levels of productivity whilst some employees are absent.

Using modern technologies, such as project management software, businesses can successfully address the challenge of cross-team and cross-department resource planning. These platforms and solutions enable collaborative work allocation, recognising the different demands of projects across an organisation, without creating a work breakdown structure.

This is essential for evaluating scheduling scenarios before assigning work to team members across departments. As a result, work is balanced, and overall delivery isn’t compromised; organisations remain on track and can successfully meet their goals.

As the resourcing puzzle continues to get more complex between distributed workforces, focused and committed talent will remain key. Having valuable insight into resourcing via modern technologies also allows leaders and managers to save time by rapidly planning project and programme resource needs without needing to create a detailed work breakdown structure.

Reducing burnout and retaining talent

Importantly, these technologies also provide an easy way to evaluate a project’s impact on workloads and identify resourcing needs and constraints before a commitment is made. Leaders and managers can then prioritise projects by comparing resource needs against actual availability, and delegate work based on skill and capacity. Employees are therefore not given work they do not have the time or headspace to take on and chances of burnout do not rise.

With flexible planning capabilities and real-time capacity and project progress updates, they can also adjust and allocate employee workload for optimal resource utilisation. Resourcing status can be monitored in real time across all projects and tasks can shift to achieve deadlines and targets, further contributing to strong employee productivity levels.

With targets more aggressive than usual in a bid to regain business strength, the number of projects will continue to increase, even when headcount does not. Now, more than ever, it’s important to keep a finger on the pulse of your workforce. Overworked employees won’t stick around for long, so leaders must carefully evaluate resource needs and availability before committing to a project.

Clear insight into resourcing via modern technologies is critical in providing insight into the demand on staff, so leadership can better evaluate and adjust workloads; thereby, reducing employee burnout before it becomes a problem.