Interview with Joris Peumans about the HR Tech Scene Response to COVID19

COVID19 has struck the world and also the global economy. But what does that mean for HR and HR Technology as their journey towards The Future of Work was just getting started?

Looking for answers, it was our luck to interview Joris Peumans, founder of geneHRations.

How does COVID 19 crisis impact the business reality of the HR Tech Startups you know?

In flex related business like staffing and service vouchers, there’s immediate impact of -30% to -90% of their revenue. In technology related business we don’t see the impact yet, yet clients focus on cost-reduction / cost-control, so there will be impact in near future.

Do you consider the Corona-crisis to be a threat for all HR Tech Startups?

No, in my opinion it gives birth to new opportunities, new ways of working, new ways of communication with and motivating teams … a real new-way-of-working we have been talking about becomes no real-life.

Do you expect HR and Business in general to use this situation to redesign work and accelerate their digitization process? If yes, what will be on top of their agenda?

I hope so. Nevertheless, focus on cost reduction and ebitda protection (read: disaster prevention) puts focus away from acceleration. We try to motivate clients in these times to use their valuable time in this crisis to focus on digitisation … we’ll see if this helps.

What should HR Tech Startups do in this situation to safeguard and/or boost their business?

Depends on business-model. This crisis will separate the boys from the men … and the girls from the women.

When all this is over, will the World of Work;

a) turn back to "normal"

b) switch focus towards a Big Reset (keep the good, loose the bad)

c) Reboot and shift gear towards the future of work?

Unfortunately humans are very traditional and contra-change, so extreme-change only happens over generations. Yes, our mindset changes that work-from-home is feasible. On the other hand, we are humans. Most of the people love the live interaction and even love a range of inefficiency.

What is your crucial tip of survival for any HR Tech Startup, with or without this crisis?

Never stop dreaming - conquer that big client or that special project - have fun and generate ebitda !


Joris Peumans

Founder of geneHRations.