Are any other HR people feeling a bit lonely in all this :(


Sorry its a self indulgent one.

Just wondering if anyone else is feeling a bit lonely?  I have streams of people coming in to my office concerned about it and asking what our plans are for WFH and sickness and about 101 other queries and being openly worried and I have to sit here and be the cabin crew and exude calmness.  Yet I am just as concerned as everyone else.

Managers and Directors etc look to us for calm, measured guidance and practical advice, and being so close to the 'inner circle' and hearing first hand the impact on the business etc.....very worrying, I'm feeling a bit forgotten about and just wondered if anyone else is feeling the same?  It just feels like sometimes people forget that we count as employees too?  

  • Thank you for starting this post.....I’ve been struggling so much recently. After working in Business Development and HR for nearly 30 years I feel as though I’m drowning with questions and demands coming from all angles I don’t have all of the answers to everybody’s questions .......being in a stand-alone role with about 100 employees and 25 branches is very lonely.
    My son is a paramedic dealing with patients with this awful virus every day and my other son is in Kabul...I’m stressed enough about them.......I can normally deal with pretty much anything that’s thrown at me but I’m finding it very difficult at the moment......I’m sorry to offload.....but thank you to all of you as your replies have made me feel as though I’m not alone......good luck everyone
  • In reply to Amanda Jane Roberts:

    Nobody here is ever alone.

    Nobody has to apologise for offloading.

    I'm ex-military (RAF) and ex-Ambulance-service (from the very beginnings of the paramedic days) There's a private messaging facility on site, feel free to use mine if you need to.


  • In reply to Peter:

    Hi Peter, thank you so much for your kind words...they have helped enormously
  • In reply to David:

    What I would do to 'live alone in the bee-loud glade'!
  • In reply to Peter:

    I have never connected on line with fellow CIPD colleagues before and I just wanted to say how great it has been to hear your experiences and advice.Thank you
  • In reply to Lisa Jennings:

    Indeed, Lisa!
    'All changed, changed utterly.....' comes to mind, too (but for how long and ultimately for the better or for the worse?)
  • Thank you to Samantha for starting this thread. I was feeling very despairing in March/April time and it was a huge comfort to read this thread. Prior to this I have not used the CIPD community facility before but not knowing where else to turn I came here and found a wonderful community who made me feel reassured.

    There are still challenges (and more to come!) but I do feel as though things are getting better. I hope my colleagues in this community are starting to feel the same and I would be happy to chat to anyone who is struggling.
  • Thank you for this post.. yes it has been a struggle and the work pressure is just building up. We were recently acquired and the pressure is so much on integration now together with the whole pandemic. I feel I do so much more work but the pressure is still building and i sometimes feel stressed.

    Prior to this I have not used the CIPD community facility before and its good to know that we have a community to turn too and learn from your experiences. Thank you.
  • Thank you Samantha for starting this thread.

    Around March/April time I was feeling exactly the same.
    Juggling employee and manager concerns, whilst in the background seeing the effect on the business and having to work with our regional director to protect positions. I started to feel frustration over the petty employee concerns and squabbles and losing faith in people. I couldn't understand how, especially during this time, they couldn't just come together and see the bigger picture that we're all in. Being a standalone position and having no one to talk to didn't help either. I was losing my drive to work in this profession if I'm honest.

    Then things calmed down a bit when we had a clearer picture of what the new normal would be. I started to get back in to the swing of things and my outlook became more positive.

    Sadly, we now find ourselves in another form of limbo, wondering what the after-effects of this situation will be and how long can we hold off on more redundancies. This prospect looming over us for the foreseeable fills me with anxiety. It's going to be a difficult end to the year I feel.

    Times like this I wish I was in a HR team to share the burdens.
  • In reply to Emily:

    Hi Emily
    The great thing about this forum and community is that you're not on your own. The last few months have been incredibly tough and staff often forget that HR also have the same concerns and anxieties. But I like to think that this situation will ultimately give us the resilience to deal with just about anything!!! I'm in a standalone role too with the same ups and downs so please feel free to get in touch directly if you need a chat/sounding board or just to let off some steam!!!
  • In reply to Emily:

    Hi Emily,

    I was having the exact same thoughts as you and also in a standalone role. And absolutely the petty school ground like squabbles that some of our employees were having and people asking why we didn't just shut the business down for an unknown potentially indefinite period of time and expecting that if we did that they would still get full pay and have a job at the end of it all. It became very tiring explaining to people that this wasn't possible and that if they didn't want to come to work then they were more than welcome to take holiday or unpaid leave (funnily enough they weren't too keen on that idea) - of course this was before furlough and then we had the endless questions of why has X been furloughed and not me and the snarky comments about "oh it's alright for the office - you get to sit at home all day"

    Don't get me wrong most of our workforce came together to work well to point that we had a supervisor agree to be furloughed so one of his team who is a single parent wasn't (their roles overlap) and our IT support driving back and forth to someones home to collect their laptop and test it out in the car because it wasn't working and the employee was shielding so couldn't come to the office. Those things restored faith a bit.

    I think (and hope) that it's starting to get a bit better now, we're gradually bringing people back - albeit on temporary shift patterns/adjusted hours - and those of us working from home have been working together to get a rota in place to allow us all a couple of days in the office without having too many at a time.

    It is just now the lingering concern of the longer term impact on the business and whether or not we come out the other end without any redundancies.

    One thing I found helpful, and I don't know if this is an option for you Emily, is that all the HR managers from the other sites in the UK joined up as a team and we formed a HR network as we were all doing the same tasks and having pretty much the same struggles so we started having daily (now weekly) calls to talk through things and update on each of our sites and that really helped as we were able to share resources. You say you have a regional director so are there perhaps other HR teams on other sites - could you perhaps reach out to them and build a virtual team?

    Hopefully we're all feeling a little more positive or less dragged down by it all now to some degree.
  • Thanks for sharing, its helpful to see a lot of us are in the same boat here.

    I am feeling exactly like this too. Particularly today I am really struggling. My work load is so high and I feel like the stress is getting on top of me and resulting in me being completely unproductive because i don't know where to start, then feel guilty for not being productive and the cycle continues!
  • In reply to Rebecca:

    This is exactly how I feel, especially this week.

    I am back in the office so thought I would feel better, but trying to figure out flexible furlough, coupled with managers not communicating with me and now the announcement of redundancies, let's just say I am glad it is Friday!
  • In reply to Nicola:

    Hi Nicole,

    I wholeheartedly feel your pain!! Its so hard particularly when we are supposed to know all the answers. I'm struggling to think straight at the moment let alone answer complex queries around furlough and government guidelines/ risk assessments.

    Indeed, I wish I could say happy Friday but that wont be the case until my work day is done!

    By all means PM me anytime you ever want to vent, its always helpful to know we are not alone in this :)

  • Hi Samantha,

    I completely understand how you feel, please do get in touch if there's anything i can do, or if you ever just want to chat to someone.