How Are You Adapting to Remote?

COVID-19 is a bitch for business, but it's making us adopt and evolve faster.


Protect Your Brand is a Limited Podcast Series. The Chad & Cheese call on a real cast of experienced characters including Gerry Crispin, Principal & Co-Founder of CareerXRoads, Deb Andrychuk, VP of Client Services with Shaker Recruitment Marketing and Steven Rothberg, Founder and President of CollegeRecruiter.com.to answer the questions employers should be asking themselves.


Lead question: How should large employers adapt their hiring of students and grads if those employees cannot work remotely?


Support provided by our friends at Shaker Recruitment Marketing - COVID might keep us at home but it won't keep us quiet!

PODCAST TRANSCRIPTION sponsored by:

Disability Solutions helps companies find talent in the largest minority community in the world – people with disabilities.


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Intro:

Hide your kids, lock the doors. You're listening to HR's most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheesman are here to punch the recruiting industry right where it hurts. Complete with breaking news, brash opinion and loads of snark. Buckle up, boys and girls. It's time for the Chad and Cheese Podcast.

Joel:

Hey, what's up everybody? I'm Joel Cheesman and I, as usual, are joined by my esteemed cohost-

Chad:

What's up?

Joel:

Sowash. What's up, Chad? Good to see you. We are also joined today by Gerry Crispin.

Gerry:

Hey.

Joel:

Recruiting soothsayer. I guess that's your official title now [crosstalk 00:00:46] Deb from Shaker, Steven from College Recruiter. Welcome guys. We're talking college recruitment, internships, all that good stuff today. I'm going to start with the first question here with ... This one's for Deb. Deb, how should large employers adapt their hiring of students and grads if those employees cannot work remotely?

Deb:

So I believe that if your students cannot work remotely, or new grads. A, unless you're in healthcare, or hospitality, restaurant work, whatever, your business continuity person should probably be fired, or you need to hire one. Because when you think about it, I mean, even our company, we were thinking about risks long before COVID hit. So, kudos to our team and our IT folks who recognize that something could happen and they put a plan in place long ago. And voila, and we were actually able to roll it out this year.

Deb:

But I mean, that's the first thing is I think, the readiness piece. If you're not ready, you better pivot as fast as you can. You better get a team together and get going. If it is indeed some type of role where it's hands on and you have to bring people in, then I think, man, that's just ... That's going to be tough. Because we still are going to need to social distance, you're going to have to supply PPE, you're going to have to be deep cleaning stations every night.

Deb:

You're probably going to have to scale back the number of students or new grads that you can bring in at a time, or you're going to have to get really crafty about scheduling. So maybe it's staggered starts, maybe some people are during the day, some are at night, some are on the weekends, and ... Which is going to mean for folks that are supplying the training, they're going to sacrifice some. Not going to be fun.

Joel:

Yeah. And I guess it's interesting, to think ... So you mentioned healthcare, restaurant. I mean, there's certain jobs that you can't do-

Chad:

Essential.

Joel:

Virtually right? Essential jobs. But even past that, I mean, the Peace Corps, I don't ... Jobs, association charities around the world, construction jobs, these aren't virtual jobs. So I think maybe the first element is who does that include? And if you think about it, it includes a lot of people.

Gerry:

It includes a lot of people, a lot more than most people think. We think, "Oh, okay. IT folks can figure out how to do development work independently." Yes they can. But there's an awful lot of other kinds of engineers besides software engineers, and they're working on materials that you can't have at home for the most part. And so all of the things that Deb just talked about are going to have to be rethought in terms of the physicality of where they're going to be. That's one issue.

Gerry:

And I think it's probably the biggest issue with one exception. I think spouses, significant others, parents, particularly as we ... As it relates to college kids, are going to start weighing in very quickly on where their kids are going to be going to work if they physically have to go do that. And that, I think, the influence of others, if you will, I think is going to have a bigger weight.

Joel:

That's right.

Gerry:

If my son or daughter were thinking about going to some crazy company that wasn't doing all of the things that Deb itemized, and sharing that well in a way that I could understand, I would be a much more pain in the ass father than I would otherwise.

Joel:

Well, Gerry, Gerry we've had helicopter parents for a while now, right? So I think what you're saying is we're going to have those same types of parents, but they're going to be layered in with even more criteria-

Gerry:

Parachuting in, is what I'd be doing. Forget that helicopter stuff, I'd be jumping up and down on whoever it was that was out there. It just, it would be a natural issue. Because I, obviously, this is a life and death for some people.

Joel:

Steven, you've heard the helicopter parent piece before.

Steven:

Yeah. Since 1990. Yeah.

Joel:

Yeah, so I mean, so kind of rebounding off of that. How does this actually morph into something different from that aspect of making the decision?

Steven:

Yeah, I do think that there's going to be significantly increased pressure on employers to adapt, in the short term, the employment that these early careers people are doing. So for example, I'm 54, my brother-in-law's a little bit older than I am, one of my brothers in law. And he is the Safety Engineer who runs the store, in charge of safety for a gas production facility. You can't do that from home.

Steven:

But if he had, and I don't know if he does or not, but if he had an intern that was going to be working side by side with him this summer, I bet you anything that that intern would be given different work. So even though the facility is ... And my brother in law's job would be essential. He would have to be on site every day. It doesn't mean that that intern who was going to be onsite needs to be. And it might be that that intern four days a week can be doing work remotely, and one day a week be at the facility. And if you do that with everybody, now you've reduced onsite head count by 80%. And then you can get that social distancing much more easily. So you might be able to break up the work. And for the next couple of months, maybe the next six months, you look for work that these people can do that is more remote and not bring them on site. To build off of- [crosstalk 00:07:04] Go for it, yeah.

Joel:

Do any of you see geography as a variable here? So think of the military, right? We don't just send people to Afghanistan or war zones. We send them to bootcamp, which is a safe environment that they're not going to get shot, hopefully. I mean, could a company New York say, "No way in hell are we going to bring people to New York City with the current state of COVID-19, but we're going to open somewhere in Boise, Idaho, or somewhere in Montana where it's almost a non-threat. [crosstalk 00:07:37]

Steven:

Some of the sporting leagues are talking about doing that, right? Major league baseball is talking about basically having all of the season played as if it's Grapefruit in Cactus League. So all of the games are going to be in the Phoenix Metro and all over Florida. I'm sure the baseball players are super excited about playing in Phoenix, 120 degrees, a double header, day, after day, after day. That's ... I'm sure they're super excited about that. [crosstalk 00:08:11].

Steven:

But to answer your question, Joel, one of the things that some of these larger employers do is provide housing for interns. That housing is typically college dorms. Colleges are closed, there are no dorms. How do you bring in ... Some of these companies have 200 interns. And they'll basically, they'll take over a dorm building at UCLA or whatever. How do you house 200 people? You can't. If you're not going to do it in a dorm, and if you defer the start of the internship program until it's reasonably safe to do that, and it's October and that student's going to school now in Philadelphia, how does that work? So, yeah, I really think that adaptation is important, and that remote-

Gerry:

A lot of hotels have vacancies, a lot of hotels will take them.

Steven:

Yeah, but what's the liability for the employer too, right? I mean, if I'm Deb's intern and Deb says, "Hey, you got to come and live here in Chicago and you're going to go stay at XYZ hotel," and I get sick, who's liable for that? Right now, it's really unclear.

Gerry:

And what does a company after to make sure if they're sued that they did require masks, that they did require hand washing, that they did require all these things? That's something companies will have to take in consideration as well.