Regular communication from the CEO and HR, and over 300 complimentary online courses for employees in Singapore and across the Asia-Oceania region are just some of the things on the priority list for Pauline Loo, Vice President, Human Resources & Admin, Taiyo Nippon Sanso Holdings (TNSHS).

The level of engagement with employees has always been one of the pertinent organisational key performance success factors. This is especially so, during this COVID-19 season, where the majority of the workforce has to work-from-home (WFH).

As the global COVID-19 situation began showing signs of worsening in January this year, HR took the lead to come up with the COVID-19 Business Continuity Plan (BCP), in partnership with workplace safety professionals. Our President & CEO endorsed this and rolled it out to the Asia Oceania region to encourage the business heads’ adoption of the COVID-19 BCP in our combat against COVID-19.

Since then, our CEO & President, together with HR, have been the lead communicators for all COVID-19 updates in countries and subsidiaries, to different targeted groups of employees on a regular. There are frequent and regular communications of at least once-a-week COVID-19 communication via emails and our in-house communication platform known as HR CoP (stands for Human Resource Community of Practice) to engage all employees in Singapore and across the Asia Oceania region.

Various types of information is shared via multiple communications platforms in our company, from the update on the current situation on COVID-19 in respective countries and subsidiaries to keep everyone posted on latest travel advisories and travel bans to the latest COVID-19 measures and advisory updates by the respective governments.

New practices at work were implemented: temperature-taking daily, check-in/check-out as a form of work ritual (which was subsequently replaced by SafeEntry from 12 May 2020), submission of weekly work report and submission of staff movement forecast report for the following week, to keep everyone updated on one another’s work progress, project development and staff movement.

Over 300 complimentary online courses have also been made available for all employees in Singapore and across the Asia Oceania region, to continue upskilling and reskilling during COVID-19 season. The HR community, on a monthly basis, is invited to share their best practices and safe measures at the local and regional offices.

HR continued to leverage on existing training & development programmes such as the Quarterly Keep Our People Interactive (KOPI) Seminars and the monthly We Care Brown Bag Reboot! seminars to conduct training and subsequently converted these programmes into webinar format to convey COVID-19 related news, changes in legislation and policies arising form COVID-19 ever-changing situation; on top of the continual impart of skills and knowledge on Leadership Competency Model and Human Resource Competency Model.

Content developed and shared with the employees during KOPI and Brown Bag Reboot! Webinars includes the latest guidelines issued by the governments, as well as useful tips to use digital tools in a secured manner. Employees from various countries are engaged during webinars by hearing from them their current state of well-being and how they are feeling about the COVID-19 sitiuation. Our Chairman, and President & CEO also emphasised the importance of complying with COVID-19 safe management measures. In addition, various chat groups have been set up via the platforms of Microsoft Teams, and SNS on Global OST to address employees’ concerns at all times, including during COVID-19 season.

If anything came out great from COVID-19, it will be how everyone embraced digital transformation readily during COVID-19 season.

Planning ahead, we need to continuous engage our employees to be a step ahead in accepting ‘the new normal’. Our President & CEO sends out his communications to the employees in Singapore and across the Asia Oceania region to reassure and reiterate to employees that operations are not affected and the company is standing strong financially. The company also closely monitors the budget. His communications include announcement of the Business Continuity Plan to Asia Oceania Region, his weekly update of COVID-19 situation in countries, and his message to employees in Singapore regarding the launch of “Splitting of Teams” guideline, “Work From Home” guidelines, “Implementation of Safe Management System” guidelines and the appointment of Safe Management Officer.

The Business Heads also work closely with the employees to have weekly updates on their work that employees know that they are well-supported by their managers and the Company. Most importantly, everyone adopts digital meeting tools to meet and communicate with one another.

If anything came out great from COVID-19, it will be how everyone embraced digital transformation readily during COVID-19 season.

HR continues to curate resources and develop talent development programmes by rolling out webinars to the employees in Singapore and across the region. A new features of talent development programme was the weekly sharing of specially curated COVID-19 resources “ DON’T SAY BO JIO HOR ”such as Health & Wellness webinars, COVID-19 eMagazine, over 300+ complimentary online courses (in English, Mandarin, Japanese) as well as complimentary full-day conferences via HR CoP and emails with employees in Singapore and in Asia Oceania Region.