I'm not saying that hand creams are inherently bad, but most of them feel like they're only putting a BandAid on the problem and not fixing them.
The deep, concentrated texture of a balm looks (and feels) like it's getting down to business immediately, the same way a lip balm for cracked lips will always feel more soothing than a lip gloss. There are so many options for good hand and skin balms that will actually put a dent in your dry skin.
Honestly, just dig your fingers (or dunk your whole hand) into a tub or tin of balm. The obvious choices being O'Keeffe's Working Hands and some old school Bag Balm, but other brands like Duke Cannon's Supply Co. and Badger Balm make some contenders to keep your fingers (and more) feeling fine.
If you want something you can keep with you on the go, opt for the tube version. Aesop makes a really great one called Reverence Aromatique and it comes in a very Right Now metal tube. Sephora makes their own in-house hand balm, and if you need some extra moisture, opt for the almond one. Even Glossier's Balm Dot Com (the fragrance and tint-free version) can be used to lube up your digits.
You can also go the other route for something a little gentler (and one that you can use on your face, which I wouldn't recommend for some of the others on this list). Kiehl's Ultra Facial Deep Moisturizing Balm can be warmed between your fingers and rubbed basically anywhere that needs a punch of moisture.
Get yourself into the habit of nurturing your fingers before it's too late and you're dealing with cracked fingertips mid-November.