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White Paper

Navigating the COVID-19 Crisis: The New Normal of the Workforce

By Lim Chin Han , Dr Tan Juan Jim, PhD and Yasmin Zolkefli | April 29, 2020

The Covid-19 pandemic has fundamentally changed the ability for people to work normally, companies to operate effectively, and markets to function efficiently. The pandemic has demonstrated the material value of the health and contributions of people to a company’s business success.
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Pandemic Risk and Response

Some estimated 3 billion of the world’s population is under some form of lockdown instituted by the governments around the world in response to the pandemic. In Malaysia, the government has implemented Movement Control Order starting from 18th March along with financial stimuli to protect the economy.

Concurrently, all companies are likely to suffer on several fronts such as supply chain disruption, increased commercial and human capital risks, financial impact, reduction in workforce productivity, and shifts in types of work. While companies in different geographies are impacted at different times and industries in different ways, a set of common characteristics and effective responses has emerged. 

This document is meant to support senior leaders in responding to the Covid-19 pandemic by outlining its impact to the workforce, the potential scenarios arising from the pandemic and leadership actions that can be taken.

Content covered to guide CEOs and CHROs

  • Challenges in managing a dispersed workforce.
  • Potential scenarios to inform action planning.
  • Guide and action items for senior leaders to consider.
  • Ideas in brief for medium and long-term planning.
  • Guiding principles and framework to manage work from home.


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