09.04.20 / Employees (COVID-19)

How COVID-19 Is Shifting Job Responsibilities for Samsung Employees: General Affairs

Talking Points

  • Customers’ values and behaviors have changed during the pandemic; they are thinking and buying differently than before.
  • Samsung employees share their views on what customers’ new expectations, needs and priorities are; how they plan to meet their evolved demands; and which habits are here to stay.
  • “This is an opportunity to transform our workplace strategy and really leverage the environment in a purposeful and innovative manner to enable bold business endeavors and foster a culture of inclusivity.”

Customers are seeing products, solutions, and services through a new lens – a lens that is continuing to evolve and likely to have a lasting effect on long-term behavioral trends.

As part of a Q&A series, Samsung employees across business areas share their views on what customers’ new expectations, needs and priorities are; how they plan to meet their evolved demands; and which habits are here to stay.

General Affairs - Reinventing Roles - COVID 19

Name: Jacquline Williams [LinkedIn]
Title: Director, Workplace Strategy & Planning, General Affairs
Location: Plano, Texas
Years with Samsung: 6 years

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1. Has your customer’s expectations, behaviors, and priorities evolved in this new environment? If so, how?

For the work that my team and I do, our customers are the people of Samsung. As a result of the pandemic, we’re focused on doing everything we can to support employee safety and well-being, as well as prepare for what the workplace of the future will look like. As a result, our people are more engaged than ever and we recognize that these are forces that will continue to influence the workplace for the long term.

General Affairs - Reinventing Roles - COVID 19
The General Affairs Move Support team show off their team spirit! [2019]

2. How are you responding to meet the changing needs of your customer?

By being adaptive and responsive. There are many elements beyond our control due to the pandemic, which requires a level of agility and responsiveness because our people have different needs – and many of these needs transcend the workplace and their experience here. Our workplace strategy is centered on identifying the specific needs of our workforce by providing them with access to support services, resources, benefits, tools and education to address both the seen and unseen challenges they may be dealing with.

My greater hope is that work will be viewed as something you do and not just a place you go – and that the pandemic will serve as a catalyst that fuels a human-centered workplace renaissance, uplifting our people, our company, our communities, and our customers.

Jacquiline Williams Director, Workplace Strategy & Planning, General Affairs

3. How are you keeping your customers and colleagues safe while playing a reimagined role in customers’ lives?

We’ve utilized workplace flexibilities, such as remote work, and harnessed new technologies and procedures to ensure employee safety and health. To ensure business operations continue moving forward, select Samsung offices and facilities have remained open with a limited capacity. To support this small segment of our workforce that is considered essential personnel, we’ve implemented many safety countermeasures and enhanced operational practices.

We created a ‘Return to Work’ guide to educate essential workers on the new protocols and introduced an app to facilitate pre-entry screening across our portfolio. To help our people understand these new changes, we created an Orientation program for existing and new essential personnel. When it is safe and permitted for more employees to return to the office, the same technologies and procedures will be applied across all of our locations, so that our workforce is prepared prior to re-entry into our workplace environments.

General Affairs - Reinventing Roles - COVID 19
The General Affairs team out on the town in Washington D.C. [2019]

4. Which new habits and behaviors do you anticipate will continue in the long run?

The pandemic has forced us to look at the workplace through a new lens. I see continued focus on hygiene, employee physical and mental health, and an expectation for high-performance buildings with wellness in mind. A paradigm shift related to the workplace is taking place and I imagine working from home to some degree will become normalized. Companies, and their employees, are looking to understand what the “next normal” will look like and it may mean the workplace ecosystem must be reimagined by integrating physical and virtual worlds – potentially saving on operational and real estate costs.

5. Will their new and potentially everlasting behaviors transform the industry’s future?

The pandemic has without a doubt accelerated our transition to the future of work. This is an opportunity to transform our workplace strategy and really leverage the environment in a purposeful and innovative manner to enable bold business endeavors and foster a culture of inclusivity. With the right toolkit that allows for a seamless transition between a work and home environment, the new “office” will include technology that powers collaboration, connection, social interaction, creative collision, exploration, and education. After 2020, I believe the workplace will be very different for years to come.

My greater hope is that work will be viewed as something you do and not just a place you go – and that the pandemic will serve as a catalyst that fuels a human-centered workplace renaissance, uplifting our people, our company, our communities, and our customers.

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