With the New Zealand economy failing to meet forecasts for growth in the fourth quarter of the 2022 financial year, we are seeing more organisations shoring up their operational model to weather the unpredictability of the year ahead.
A restructure may seem like it should be a last resort, but there are many reasons why a business will contemplate a restructure but particularly during times of uncertainty. A measured approach and partnering closely with our clients early in the strategic discussions leading up to change we find will help mitigate as much risk as possible e.g., such as a personal grievance for unfair termination by way of redundancy.
A sound restructure process involves covering 5 key steps:
1. Preparation and Planning
You cannot underestimate the importance of planning when it comes to considering a strategic and impactful change in the business, including the composition of your future workforce. Every detail of your reasons for change needs to be clear., along with planning for your change process.
2. Announcing the Proposed Changes
Meet with potentially impacted employees first. Prepare a proposal for change outlining the commercial reason behind the decision to consider the restructure, any information supporting the consideration for the change and the proposed organisational structure showing roles and responsibilities. Be prepared to share financials as well.
3. Consultation & Feedback
A minimum of five days (weekends are not business days and do not count) should be allowed for impacted employees to consider and respond to the proposed changes. Timeframes are generally set depending on the size and complexity of the changes proposed. Always allow enough time for consultation and feedback.
4. Reviewing and Considering Feedback
Aim to allow yourself at least two days to genuinely consider impacted employee responses and determine whether the right course of action is to proceed. If the proposed structure changes look like they will significantly change following the feedback, the process will need to be restarted. Be open to feedback as it can provide insight to things you may have missed in your proposal for change.
5. Confirmation of Outcomes from Feedback
Once the decision is confirmed, notify all of the impacted employees as to the outcomes of the decision. Invite expressions of interest for new roles, confirm successful candidates and notify those whose roles are disestablished. We always encourage clients to assist those impacted with outplacement services. Some of your people may not have put a CV together for years, and professional help takes the stress away for your impacted people.
Communication during Change
With any restructure process, we encourage ‘over-communication’ throughout the process. This helps for transparency, removes any questions or ambiguity about the process and gives your people the opportunity to be actively involved in the change process.
Get it right – be clear on:
- why the change is necessary
- what the timeframes for the change are
- how the change process is going to be managed
- what support is in place
A good process will:
- Stick to timeframes
- Have clear and consistent messaging
- Ensure information is shared in a way that everyone feels well informed
- Ensure everyone impacted is given the same opportunity to provide feedback in a reasonable timeframe
- Ensure those impacted feel supported throughout the process and know where to get help from and who to talk to
Throughout your change process, take care that the people staying are looked after as much as the people who are leaving. Ultimately, everyone is impacted.
Restructuring Support from Hello Monday
At Hello Monday, our expert HR team follow a partnered approach through a very thorough employment and legislative process to understand:
- your business
- the impact of the proposed changes
- your operations
- the outcomes you’re looking to achieve
We’re here to help you get it right, and make the HR process easy. We work closely with you to gather all the information: the background information, your employment documents and who the potential impacted staff are, and what these proposed changes mean for them and the overall culture of the organisation.
Working closely with you and building trust is important for us to ensure that all decisions are watertight. We hold your hand through every stage of the change process, and we guide you with expert employment knowledge and experience. Our focus through the change management process is to get the best outcome for you with as little disruption as possible, and our team is on hand to guide you every step of the way.
Contact the team at Hello Monday if you are looking to make an organisational change and need guidance on the best approach.