How COVID-19 has reshaped the working world forever

our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 11 January 2021

The coronavirus pandemic has profoundly affected the word of work. COVID-19 has radically impacted various sectors across the US, including oil and gas, and manufacturing. Contractors have experienced varying degrees of impact. Even before the pandemic, manufacturing and the warehouse environment had been facing some tough challenges. According to research found by The Conversation, over 5 million jobs in the US have been lost due to globalization.


The pandemic will have a massive impact on the nation’s industrial sector, and it’s no secret that perspectives and attitudes towards work have alerted. Now, businesses have been forced to adapt to thrive in the new normal. However, the COVID-19 pandemic doesn’t have to be the end game. There’s no doubt supply, demand, and prices have been disrupted – but leaders need to adopt a growth-mindset and prioritize finding new opportunities. Here’s an overview of how COVID-19 has reshaped the working world and what we can do to recover.

Long-term challenges


If businesses are to truly recover from the pandemic, then they will need to plan for the new working environment and overcome the obstacles that are holding them back. Businesses should continue to prepare for all the potential struggles. But what are the main challenges ahead and how will businesses be forced to navigate them?


The manufacturing sector is hugely important to the infrastructure in society, which is why businesses must understand how to aid recovery. Companies need to work closely with contractors to help assess which projects might need to shut down. In a time of declining costs and low revenue, businesses must establish systems to assess profitability and cash flow. Then there’s also the challenge of making sure workers are safe and comfortable while they execute projects. 


Research has found that 53% of US manufacturers expect a change in operations as a result of the pandemic. In this era of social distancing, contractors may need to consider working more staggered shifts and eliminate non-essential travel. Companies need to plan strategically and identify problems that could affect the supply chain. Automation will be a key strategy to help improve productivity for plant manufacturers and we may see companies look to diversify their client base, instead of relying on local customers. As a result of the pandemic, manufacturers will need to take great measures to remain competitive in the post-COVID era.


With all this in mind, there’s no question that the pandemic has been a unique challenge for the on-site contractual workforce. While other industry professionals can work from home, contractors have to continue to go into work. This has accelerated the push for safer and more sustainable work environments. As a result, we might see an increase in off-site construction to strengthen both safety and existing quality.


The New Normal

The world of work has become increasingly technology-driven. Digital transformation has been underway for many years across all industries. In the construction and manufacturing sectors, companies will need to focus on remote tools to remain competitive. This means that businesses will need to improve their BIM compatibility and to ensure contractors have the right tools digital tools at their disposal. As we move into the normal, there’s never been a better time for firms to invest in further training for their contractors. In times of uncertainty, it’s more important to upskill workers and encourage continuous learning. We also expect to see a shift in the demand for projects as a result of the pandemic. With changing consumer behavior, construction firms and manufacturers will need to track these changes and plan for the future.


Employee well-being is all the more important

There’s no denying that happiness at work is crucial. People are often more productive when they feel happy in their roles. The coronavirus pandemic has pushed employee well-being front and center. We’ve been forced to think more critically about work and what the perfect work-life balance really looks like. 


As a result of the pandemic, there’s been a greater push for team collaboration and an increased focus on strong leadership. This all contributes to the overall well-being of employees. The best businesses are those that have an engaged workforce, and where skills and knowledge are constantly nurtured over time. With the pandemic disrupting normal modes of work, it’s more important than ever for businesses and leaders to adopt strategies that foster a “team spirit”. By focusing on employee well-being, businesses are more able to work through these current hard times and continue to thrive when they’re all over.


Build a high-performing team with TRS Craft

Contractors are in high demand across all industries, especially those with specialist skills and knowledge. It’s a great time to hire contractors who can add something new to your team. At TRS Craft, we recruit into the Oil and Gas, Energy, Life Sciences, Manufacturing, Fabrication, Construction & Logistics sectors. We have an experienced team of recruiters that can help you find the best talent today. So, why not get in touch to ensure you have the most highly skilled staff in your team?