Employers all around the globe are reacting to Covid-19, anxious to support their employees, customers, suppliers and communities. The media, consultancies and vendors are crowding our media feeds and inboxes with proffered solutions and advice, some of which promises to change the way we work forever.

How will YOU decide to support your workforce to alleviate the impacts of Covid-19 on them and your organization? 

How will you know what types of actions provide the most immediate benefit, and which will provide longer term benefits independent of this crisis? 

How will you know what types of pandemic risk controls might be lower priority now, but will benefit your organization in the long run?

At Expert Choice we are asking and answering these questions for our own workforce.  We start, as we often do, with data from subject matter experts, in this case Forrester's  podcast that presents their panel research on how the pandemic is impacting behavior and attitudes in the work force.  https://go.forrester.com/blogs/how-employees-feel-about-coronavirus-now-a-pandemicex-survey-update/ 

In the hour that it took me to listen to the  podcast, I multi-tasked, and entered the prevalent "worries," discussed during the podcast into Expert Choice Riskion as sources of risk that could cause a risk event, or risk events (when a specific loss would occur.)

Covid-19 Sources of Risk


Next, I spent 30 minutes using ratio-based ratings scales to rate the likelihoods and consequences of events to get an initial swag on how Expert Choice might consider reacting to Covid-19. And, then I asked a few of my colleagues to provide their judgments.consequence of covid-19 events

event likelihood ind and part


Based on MY judgments, I can see that Expert Choice is lucky. Many of the technology

based Covid-19 risk events (for example, poor Wifi/internet connectivity) have relatively low likelihood for us due to controls we've already implemented as we're already in our 20th+ year of distributed Work From Home. On the other hand, I was surprised to discover that one of the biggest risk to Expert Choice (based on my judgments), is that our employees are worried that they won't be able to get medical treatment for non-Covid issues. I also realized we could easily do a much better job of encouraging and model RESPECTFUL use of online meeting etiquette-especially with respect to microphone use.  

My next insight was that my colleagues believe that there's greater likelihood and impacts from event cancellations and furloughs than I perceive. 


covid-19 Risk group vs. indNext steps? 

Our whole team is meeting for online brainstorming to review and include risk events and risk controls (solutions) to add to my quick and dirty model. We'll collect judgments from senior leadership and our HR and technical subject matter experts. Then, we'll send everyone a link so they can enter their own judgments for likelihoods and impacts to learn about the relative importance of Covid-19 interventions for everyone on our team. From that, we'll develop a list of possible Covid-19 risk controls, costs, and constraints, and use Riskion to create an efficient frontier so we can present our CFO with the optimal solution set at any budget. 

In the meantime, we're meeting with HR to find ways to boost messaging to our teams about their job security, and to remind them of their tele-medicine options, including quick-video helps on how to use or access these services, review Rx policies to help our employees ensure uninterrupted supplies of their meds, and brainstorm for other risk controls. 

The technology team is going to identify or create a fun "courtesy" etiquette video demonstrating how to use the mute and microphone features. And, as often as Goto Meeting seems to change their user-interface, we'll be extracting a promise for the IT team to issue video updates. And, we'll look to re-evaluate vendors of meeting platforms and headphones with an eye towards getting everyone some type of smart mute capability.

We are determined that we will learn lessons from this Covid-19 experience to better support our people, and become safer and stronger in the long run. We wish the same for you and your organization. 

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