The "Fab Four" to help HR "conquer" the end-of-year workload!
December 15, 2022
The end-of-year workload can make HR's to-do-list longer than the entire company's wishlist combined. What are the "small" secrets that can help HR "survive"?
In addition to the workload that comes every year-end season, issues such as organizing Year End Party, New Year Party, listening to complaints, “listening center,” buying gifts for each department, etc., if not properly divided, can inadvertently make HR exhausted. In fact, a recent study by Deloitte showed that up to 82% of HR leaders are experiencing burnout at the end of the year.
To help HR succeed in “surviving” the end-of-year workload, experts have summarized four tips that businesses can refer to below.
Tip 1: Mobilize “soldiers”
Instead of letting HR do everything alone, why not find ready-made “soldiers” to share the workload and still “have fun together”?
For familiar tasks such as changes, office decoration, and preparing Tet gifts for departments and partners, HR can encourage everyone to tidy up the work area, and provide costs for each department to come up with decoration ideas freely. Instead of HR having to choose gifts for employees at end-of-year parties, the HR department can redirect by letting everyone prepare and exchange gifts with each other. Staff can be freed from buying New Year gifts to focus on completing unfinished items, while gift recipients will be excited about unexpected gifts.
Tip 2: Stay away from nameless tasks
In addition to subjective reasons, sometimes the overload of personnel may be “contributed” by other employees! At the end of the year, many people come to HR to inquire about decisions on salary increases or bonuses or to arrange Tet holiday schedules. In fact, these issues are not within HR’s jurisdiction because they are based only on evaluations by management to calculate appropriate salaries and bonuses for each employee.
Businesses can “rescue” HR by identifying the specific tasks that belong to the HR department and widely disseminating them to employees, avoiding situations where employees inquire in the wrong place.
Tip 3: Empower decision-making for year-end activities
Ms. Lan Anh, the HR manager of an import-export company, said, “Employee engagement is always our top priority when we organize year-end activities. However, with ‘9 people, 10 opinions,’ the HR department spends a lot of time and effort to satisfy everyone.”
Given this situation, how can we create activities that both bring the team together and reduce the workload for the HR department?
The keyword here is “empower decision-making.” The HR department can offer options for year-end activities such as the venue for the year-end party, gifts for outstanding employees, desired cultural activities, or simply choosing the color of clothing for everyone to discuss and vote on. This helps everyone feel comfortable and ready to accept the chosen option. The HR department also does not have to worry about finding a solution that satisfies everyone. In addition, activities that involve voting and discussion also help to increase cohesion within the workforce.
Ms. Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong, Deputy CEO of Talentnet, a human resources consulting company, shared, “Empowering the team to make decisions is a way to create a bond between employees and the company while helping HR balance work and personal life while ensuring the quality of the company’s work.”
Tip 4: Prepare for the new year
In addition to immediate solutions for overworked staff, experts also suggest a small tip for HR to use throughout the new year. According to Reality HR’s assessment, 2023 may be a “brain-teasing” year for HR with major events such as cost-of-living crises and increased workloads due to a shortage of quality labor.
By understanding the HR department’s most important tasks, HR can propose ways to reduce workload in the new year’s plan now, to avoid exhaustion and have more time to invest in developing human resources strategies. In addition, companies can also consider outsourcing staff as a “gift” to help HR meet the work schedule and prepare well for a “battle” with the company throughout the year.
To make the end-of-year season more “breathable” for HR, efforts from the company alone are not enough. Ms. Huong believes that the most important factor is still each individual employee: “To avoid burnout at the end of the year, employees need to actively grasp their work to divide and arrange it reasonably. In addition, even small attention and guidance from the company will also create motivation to help HR avoid ‘work traps’ and work more effectively”.