Economic downturns are not unusual in our world. It is a general recession of economic activity for a lasting period. The timeframes of economic downturns are different, but we can witness a tendency to decrease in their duration and frequency of occurrence every year. Between 1960 and 2007, 122 recessions affected 21 advanced economies roughly 10% of the time according to Investopedia.
Inflation and economic downturns can be great stress points for businesses and can negatively affect their productivity. The effects of inflation are far-ranging, both in the workplace and in the community. The last major event that shook the world economy was the coronavirus pandemic, and we still feel its impact on the global economy.
Workload distribution is a problem for most organizations. The effects of inflation and economic recession have put even more pressure on the organization to get things done, run efficiently, and continually improve. In such a scenario, how does one deal with workloads? Let’s dive deeper into this blog post and identify the best strategies to manage workload.
Inflation has several definitions. The most popular definition of inflation is “a persistent rise in the general level of prices.” It’s also called as a rise in the price of money, a rise in the price level, an economic contraction, and a decrease in purchasing power.
Since inflation decreases the purchasing power of money, it makes people able to afford fewer goods and services than before. It generally has an adverse effect on the economy. For example, if high inflation persists for long periods, it can eliminate competitiveness by making production unprofitable and investment unattractive, which ultimately leads to higher unemployment and slower economic growth. Here is a simple visualization of the inflation impact:
Image source: Investopedia
The economic downturn and inflation is the evil brother to each other. As inflation in the economy runs rampant, a similar trend follows in organizations across the globe. Suddenly, it’s not just limited to a simple price rise but an increase in the overall workload on employees. The world becomes overloaded with work and it is to be a matter of time before you’ll feel the change. Humanity always concludes past challenges, but this does not always mean that society is fully prepared for new ones, especially if we talk about the economic trends of 2022.
One of the biggest concerns people have is the workload management problem during inflation and economic downturn. No matter how large or small your business is, it is a matter of concern to all businesses when they see productivity slow down and the cost of living rise. Inflation causes a number of problems that need to be planned for in advance, and workload management issues are among the main tasks of businesses.
The reasons that can lead to inflation can be different, they can be on the micro, and macroeconomic levels, and inflation may vary by geographic component (to be on regional and global levels). No company can be completely protected from its negative manifestations, but regardless of the size of your company and its type of activity, you can always analyze the market and create a plan to minimize the negative consequences of economic recessions, inflation, and workforce reduction.
We cannot ignore the post-pandemic effects, as supply chains have been significantly affected and demand for certain goods and services has increased significantly. It is also necessary to take into account the political situation in the international arena, conflicts, and as a result economic sanctions, restrictions, protectionism, and economic preferences of individual states. All of these influence businesses all over the world, and may cause related Inflation anxiety, which is defined as stress about rapidly rising prices, usually accompanied by stagnant wage growth, according to Workest. For example, here is one of the latest polls conducted in the US, that reflects people’s concerns about economic recession and inflation:
Image source: Health Populi
As we can see, the level of concern is rising and inflation anxiety for employers adds another layer of complexity. But with proper analysis and planning, there is always a way out.
Crisis management needs an instant involvement in the world’s economic and political processes, analysis of information, and creation of short and long-term plans. Here are some points to focus on:
Monitor the world’s situation: on the global and regional levels. Pay attention to political processes, alliances, currency markets, and trends. The world is changing, so you need to learn to adapt to changes as quickly as possible to minimize losses.
Get your financial affairs to avoid a crisis. Analyze your strengths and weaknesses to remain stable and self-sufficient in the event of unforeseen situations.
Learn how to be flexible, in order to adapt your strategy to any conditions and to have more benefits despite the complexity of the situation. Іs Dale Carnegie said: “If You Have A Lemon, Make A Lemonade”.
Communicate with employees, and establish proper communication early. Human resources is an extremely important capital. Your team is your backbone and they also need feedback from the company. It is important to maintain high employee morale, as it affects productivity and work optimization. With the right approach and planning tools, you can get the job done successfully with less effort. At the same time, you won’t overload employees and avoid workforce reduction.
When stock prices are rising, businesses and individuals tend to take on more risk. That’s why trying to manage workload during times of inflation and economic downturn is not easy. As time goes on and new business opportunities arise, companies must deal with increased responsibilities and tasks at work. To put it more precisely, work output is expected to grow despite the economy slowing down. The result? To manage workload effectively during the aforementioned times when people do not have enough resources, it is necessary for business owners, managers, employees, and all the other stakeholders involved in every facet – operational or any other kind – of the organization to work together as a team.
Many organizations have seen their revenues drop as economic factors affect their business and operational needs. The problem we face today is that many organizations are facing a similar scenario. The workforce is shrinking but work volume and requirements are on the rise. This means there is an overload of workload in the existing teams. Organizations try to manage their resources strategically to improve the overall performance of the organization, which leads them to various workload management techniques.
As was mentioned earlier your employees are a huge power, so you need to set up transparent communication. Managers are an important intermediate link as they work with separate teams, control projects’ successes, and know all of the details that help to adhere to short, and long-term planned objectives. Of course, only human efforts are not enough to conduct successful work, so companies widely use project & resource management platforms for collaboration planning. One of the most popular platforms in recent decades is Jira.
Businesses face many challenges each and every day. These problems range from scheduling and providing effective training, to continually improving the quality of the products they provide. Rather than tackle these challenges alone, businesses often turn to an issue tracker like Jira. Started by a company named Atlassian, it is an application that helps teams to collaborate most effectively. This software was introduced in the year 2002 and since then it has dominated the management and development tool market.
You can use Jira to track anything — from your company’s product roadmap to the smallest assignments. It allows individuals or teams to manage projects from initiation through development, testing, release, and even maintenance. It’s especially great if you need help with collaboration and communication between team members since it allows you to create projects, and add additional members.
The software provides everything needed, no matter what type or size your company is: project management, task planning, time tracking, and resource management. Dashboards with tasks and projects help to see the great picture of ongoing and planned undertakings. Users may also find various reports, and set up time-tracking fields. Form your teams, assign tasks to users and run projects smoothly. Jira is suitable for both technical and non-technical teams and is a great instrument for agile teams as provides scrum & kanban boards of your choice.
Jira also provides a great variety of third-party add-ons, that allow broadening Jira functionality. A great example of a reliable resource & workload management plugin is ActivityTimeline for Jira.
ActivityTimeline perfectly suits resource management needs. The app allows managing both human, and non-human resources with the help of meaningful individual/team timelines. Everything is visible on the scalable Dashboard, where users can find all of the projects, teams, and tasks.
With the help of a scalable dashboard, you can assign and track tasks instantly. Create different events, and specific skills and assign positions to your users, all while tracking their work. Manage vacations, sick leaves, and more. The cross-project view for shared resources helps to receive a comprehensive picture of the workflows without effort. Timesheeting, workload, and availability reporting under singlehood. The app even provides a personal workspace for users to track their own tasks&projects.
Workload management becomes easy with ActivityTimeline, as the developers created special workload indicators that help to prevent work under or overload. Commonly people are bad at predicting how much capacity they have left, so the app provides numerous benefits as a visualization of the teams & resource capacity, projects & activities.
Every user has their own workload indicator showing the actual Jira workload of the user.
Teams also have the workload indicator with different workload indicator types.
Additionally, you can generate timesheets and reports based on your ActivityTimeline data.
The app also provides a wide range of useful reports. You can effortlessly track resource utilization with the help of the Resource Utilization Report:
ActivityTimeline has plenty of useful features aimed at advanced resource management. The app helps teams to stay on the same page and be productive even if the economic situation is unstable, as it shows a comprehensive picture of the ongoing work, and allows to distribute workload between users properly.
Discover more useful information about ActivityTimeline features, Schedule a Demo, or Start a Free Trial on the Atlassian Marketplace!