Updated: May 28, 2020

With COVID-19 hitting the business world hard, many businesses will be changing their structure and quite possibly downsizing.

Like most things relating to your workforce, good decision making, effective and clear communication along with strong process is vital in making any necessary changes to your organisational structure. NB - This includes changing an employee's terms and conditions.

If you are considering a change to your businesses structure here are a few basic things to consider:


It is so important to give critical thought to what your business objectives are and establish why a change in structure will support achieving those objectives. Fully understanding the impact of any change from a client, employee and any other key stakeholder view is vital to successful implementation.


· Develop a business case that determines the risks and opportunities including cost impact. This will clarify your thinking and enable good decision making to be made at a time when getting it wrong could cost the business in time, reputation and money.


It is difficult to keep everyone happy through a restructure. If you are fully transparent with your communication, it may bite you in the backside and if you communicate less that can also provide pain. Think about your audience and how your communication will impact on them.


· Develop a proposal that includes all relevant information and rationale for the change

· Include a timeframe for consultation, how to provide feedback etc and stick to it

· Listen to feedback provided by your employees and be open minded. Your team may assist you in achieving the optimal structure including cost saving initiatives

· Seek out good advice if you have any doubt on how to execute a change.


Providing enough time to consult with your employees and thinking through the implementation of your structural changes is important. While you may “just want to get on with it”, should your decision and/or process be challenged you will need to demonstrate that your consultation process is genuine and that you consider how and what information is provided such as the need to provide job descriptions for new roles, how people will be selected if jobs are contested, and what criteria will be used.


· Provide time to allow the best decisions to be made, provide the right information to employees at the right times and consult effectively and meaningfully

If you need advice or support regarding a structural change to your business - contact The HR Guy

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