By: Logan Ebbets, MS, CPRP
It has been 17 months since the COVID-19 Pandemic started, and many of us vacated our offices, never to return. Now we are embarking on the new horizon of the post-pandemic world and where we work. As we enter the fall of 2021, many organizations are making declarations around the future of one’s workplace. A silver lining for me in this is that before the COVID-19 Pandemic, my organization had little to no work-from-home opportunities. Fast forward to now, and my organization is completely on board with offering this option for applicable employees. This newfound flexibility is a welcome game-changer and something that has been a long time coming.
But these changes have not come without testing our resiliency as an industry, as many of us were forced to change how we connect and where we do our work almost overnight. A common personality trait for recruiters is extroversion. We are energized by engaging with our recruits, our stakeholders, and our colleagues. You can feel some of that energy in a virtual format, but it will never be fully recreated. One thing that cannot be recreated in a virtual world is the spontaneity of running into a hiring manager in the hallway and finally getting the answer to that email that has been sitting in their inbox. So much of our work is accomplished ad-lib.
For those of you who may not be returning to the office or for those that will be working a hybrid model of split time between the office and home. How will you continue to foster that engaged energy and impromptu collaboration? I will be working a hybrid schedule officially starting this fall. For the days I am on-site, I will ensure I walk my rounds because I never know who I might run into. For the days that I am home, I have weekly virtual calls scheduled with my colleagues. Even if we do not have agenda items to discuss, I have found these frequent check-ins helpful to feel connected.
It’s been fascinating to hear how our members have also stayed connected. I’ve had the opportunity to sit in on several AAPPR Roundtables. Through this, I learned how AAPPR members, all over the country and Canada, pivoted for continued success in their roles across the provider recruitment spectrum. One theme emerged across these conversations; no one stopped recruiting or doing the work! Rather, they modified, adjusted, and carried on. They were proving that no matter “where you work,” you can still stay connected to your mission, your candidates, and your colleagues, even in a newly modified workplace.