3 Innovative Takeaways From the COVID-19 Experience

innovative takeaways from covid

As companies have grappled with the undulations of a global pandemic, the reverberating impacts on performance have mounted. While some of those impacts are recessive and challenging; others are encouragingly positive and forward-looking. Here are three of the gains that companies and their hiring teams have experienced amid the Coronavirus situation, foundational for future initiatives that can help companies build and grow.

1. Collaborative Innovations Across Business Enterprise

“Amidst the gloom and doom of the early months of the COVID-19 crisis, something surprisingly uplifting started to happen: Companies began to come together to work openly at an unprecedented level, putting the ability to create value before the opportunity to make a buck,” according to Lunus Dahlander and Martin Wallin in the Harvard Business Review article, Why Now Is the Time for ‘Open Innovation.’ 

This has included companies like German multinational Siemens who availed their Additive Manufacturing Network to anyone needing medical device design support; and, Ford who collaborated with the United Auto Workers, GE Healthcare and GM to build ventilators in Michigan.

As well, a collective of national pharmacy organizations, including the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy “embarked upon an unprecedented level of collaboration” in re: to policy recommendations and continued working together throughout the full force of the pandemic. Doing so ensured a fully optimized workforce on the frontlines.

Moreover, Lever offered the Lever + Zoom streamlined remote interviewing option for free to customers through Sept. 2020, further reinforcing the value of collaboration during, and following a crisis.

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Many other industries and organizations can refer to historical initiatives and programs that were buoyed by the mutual collaboration of two or more businesses aligning to resolve specific problems or act upon opportunities. 

As the pandemic recedes, maintaining an open attitude toward continued cross-organizational partnerships can help companies ideate beyond their own operational walls to maintain innovation momentum.

“While concerns over intellectual property, return on investments and various unforeseen consequences of open innovation are valid, what we are experiencing now is an opportunity to innovate through and beyond the crisis,” underscore Dahlander and Wallin, who offer methods for companies to overcome open innovation challenges. This includes collaborating on initiatives that do not risk a company’s core assets but contribute to mutual operational and revenue goals.

2. Collaborative + Technological Innovations Across Recruiting + Hiring

“One key recruitment trend to emerge from the crisis has been increased collaboration across sectors and employers. Platforms such as People + Work Connect, developed by consultancy Accenture, connect thousands of people out of work because of the virus with companies that are hiring,” according to the People Management article, How Coronavirus Has Driven Innovation in Recruitment.

Another company, Toptal, a freelancing platform that connects businesses with software engineers, designers and business consultants, is a pro at remote work and has stepped up to the innovative plate. Leveraging their 10+ years’ experience as a fully distributed global company, they published a suddenly remote playbook that provides a sustainable, enterprise roadmap to fuel the future for other forward-thinking companies.

Chris Russell, in Recruiting Automation Technology Poised to Grow Post-Covid, reinforces the future value of technology in the recruiting sphere, asserting, “As employers in the country start to shift their thoughts to a return to work, a new way of recruiting is poised to gain momentum. I am speaking about the adoption of more recruiting automation technology into the recruiting and hiring process.” 

This is part and parcel a result of major cuts in the recruitment workforce, necessitating a more streamlined, efficient process to bridge the gap. And, as the economy ramps back up, the need for speed to remain competitive will become even more fierce. 

Technology automation is the natural way to amp up recruiting activities. 

An example of this is the use of technology to bolster and centralize recruitment processes, such as initial telephone screening. Doing so has “led to double the conversion rates from application through to offer stage,” according to care home provider and HR Director Sharon Benson in the earlier People Management article, adding that the built-in, scored and assessed behavioral competencies “will definitely be included as part of our face-to-face interviews in the future.”

Moreover, the virtualization of processes “has created an audit trail of data” that has optimized insights into the candidate journey, according to Recruitment Manager Samantha Buckwell. This information can be converted into fuel driving long-term process improvements.

3. Digital + Brand Innovations Across Healthcare Services

Tom Whicher, CEO of DrDoctor in the UK, a digital health start-up, “has said he hopes the drive for innovation across the health services will continue post COVID-19,” according to an article in Digital Health

DrDoctor’s AI algorithm “assesses the patient’s urgency with a traffic light scoring system, giving a green, amber or red score.” Whicher believes that the time to navigate the backlog of appointments could be slashed by more than 3 years (from 4 years to 10 months) if all hospitals in the country adopted his technology. 

Moreover, consumer distrust that plagued the healthcare industry pre-COVID-19 has been (at least partially) restored amid front-line, first responder heroism and as health insurance companies expanded benefits such as telehealth and waived co-pays and deductibles, according to an article by Lindsay R. Resnick, MHA, in the Managed Healthcare Executive

Going forward, healthcare companies’ brand narratives must be purposeful and nimble to adapt to marketplace change and to “exude honesty and sincerity about how, why and what you are doing,” suggests Resnick.

“Healthcare companies are facing their own challenges: revenue and growth shortfalls, work-from-home disruption, stakeholder pressures and shifting customer needs and demands,” says Resnick. “Picking up where you left off pre-COVID-19 takes enterprise agility. It means strategic pivoting and business nimbleness. This crisis is an opportunity for healthcare brands to act, not sit still in a ‘wait and see’ mode.’”

The opportunity, therefore, for healthcare to continue on their course of innovation and sail into a future that is both consumer- and bottom-line friendly awaits.

Final Thoughts: Continuous Transformation for a Changing World

Reimagining enterprise operations and recruitment performance in a post-COVID-19 world is made easier by the foundation that was poured amid the recent-months’ crisis. CEOs, HR leaders, recruiters and other key stakeholders need only to maintain innovation’s forward-momentum to stay competitive. Lever’s continuously evolving Recruiting Software will help transform your organizational and talent strategies and keep you ahead of the curve in an always-changing world. Discover how Lever is meeting companies where they are today by offering a limited time, low-cost program to make your recruiting easier. Learn more here.