Article (August-2018)


Outplacement & Redeployment

Joel Paul

Designation : -   Director of Operations

Organization : -  RiseSmart India, Pune


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The current labour market is volatile as automation continues to replace low skilled jobs in India and business markets contract and expand to stay agile in rapidly changing markets. To keep up with changes, employers are both seeking talented employees in one area while laying off employees in another. As part of these trends, outplacement services are becoming more common place in India.
For organizations looking to keep costs low while maintaining a positive employee brand, the addition of outplacement and redeployment solutions are considered for the following reasons:
  • To reduce fixed costs in the face of declining customer activity and optimism.
  • To re - engineer organizational processes and restructure, enabling leaner operations.
  • To create workforce flexibility to meet organizational and individual needs.
  • Redundancy in skills and operations, leading to stagnant efforts.
Traditionally, companies considered employee separation as the end of the employer - employee relationship. However, the growing popularity of social media and the advent of talented employees returning to a former employer when financial times improve have prompted employers to seek solutions to help them form long - term positive relationships with employees through outplacement services.
The scarcity of skilled talent has likewise created a need to hold on to valuable workers even during a time of restructuring or reductions in force. To meet ongoing talent requirements, organizations are now considering redeployment solutions, enabling valuable employees to discover new opportunities within the organization, instead of outside the organization.
Here are the top 4 reasons companies in India are considering outplacement and redeployment solutions for employees impacted by layoffs and restructuring events :
1. Maintaining a positive employer brand image
Workforce reductions are often a result of difficult business decisions and impacted employees often have a hard time coping. When layoffs are not handled well and employees are not provided the support they need to land a new job, they can harbour and voice negative opinions in very public ways. HR departments who realize the impact on the employer brand are seeking ways to soften the transition, while mitigating negative emotions associated with the loss of job. Offering outplacement services as a part of a fair severance package adds strength to the corporate values. When displaced employees feel they've been treated fairly and empathetically, they are less likely to share their negative feelings with the world, creating a space for positive brand values to grow. When organizations are ready to hire again, a positive brand reputation is critical for attracting valuable talent.
2. Creating an optimistic company culture
Once the layoff is over, organizations usually want to get back to work and forget that it ever happened - something that is easier said than done. Often current employees forge a bond with their peers impacted by the layoff and feel disillusioned and guilty at the loss. Survivor guilt can be a major productivity drain, if not addressed. Prior to conducting a layoff, contemporary outplacement solutions providers help prepare managers to deliver notification while addressing the issues of resiliency for managers and remaining employees. 
When it's clear to the remaining employees that their former colleagues impacted by the layoff were treated fairly and offered support and resources to find a new job quickly, they're more likely to maintain an optimistic outlook and return to productivity quickly.
3. Improving talent retention
Even during a reduction in workforce, many organizations continue to actively recruit new talent in other departments or business units. While reductions in force are designed to cut costs, continuing to recruit, hire, and onboard new employees is expensive and time consuming. Instead of firing in one department and looking outside the organization to hire in another, redeployment programs allow organizations to retain high - performing, talented employees during times of corporate restructuring. Alternative programs such as these are now offered by outplacement service providers as a way to mitigate the loss of business knowledge and save money.
4. Ensuring future business success
Complete termination of professional relationship can be costly in the current labour market. Moving forward, organizations will want to establish positive employee - employer relationships to keep the door open for future opportunities. Highly successful organizations realize that success is built on both hard work and goodwill for the benefit of past and current employees, with those people going on to be the customers, business partners, company references, and reviewers of the future. Outplacement services help to maintain and nurture positive employee relationships during these crucial moments to cement positive sentiment in the future.
Contemporary outplacement services can shorten the time to land for impacted employees while promoting productivity and fostering positive alumni sentiments. In the future, successful organizations will be those that can respond to market changes while establishing trust and long - term relationships with the people they employ.