As the world was shaken by the COVID-19 outbreak early this year, many companies have tried to ensure the health and safety of their employees by providing them with the option of working from home. This step was in fact necessary to enforce the social distancing practices mandated by the governments of various countries.
People in the technology service industry were already familiar with the practice of working from home but this pandemic has pushed many unwilling participants too in the remote work zone. The result of this disruption is that the dynamics of work have now changed forever. More and more people have discovered that work can now be done outside of office spaces without any hassle.
The Great Side Of Working From Home!
Recent advancements in the tech sector have made it relatively easy to use technologies needed for collaborative work such as Zoom, Oneteam, Slack, Google Hangouts, and other services. This enabled people to smoothly adapt to the new remote working setup and stay constantly in touch with their colleagues.
Senior executives are also aware of the fact that many of their employees actually do enjoy working from home and therefore have done their best in facilitating a comfortable work environment at home by paying for desks and office supplies. Despite this, working from home has reduced considerable overhead costs incurred by organizations.
Employees appreciate the fact that they can now avoid long commutes to work and devote the time they have thus saved in attending to the needs of their children who are now not attending school and therefore, staying at home. Work from the home experiments have given an opportunity for the employees to be close to their loved ones. Remote work is not just emotionally more fulfilling, it also has a significant positive impact on the environment. Reduced commute translates to lower carbon emissions and that explains why the post-corona air is significantly cleaner.
This set-up also has multiple benefits for companies in terms of the cost they save by not leasing office space which is not needed anymore or at least not till this pandemic lasts.
All these developments have spelled the end of an office-centric work model. Many companies are planning on continuing the practice of work from home even after the pandemic ends. The internet is supposed to act as a connecting link to the office environment. Many companies feel like they won’t need an office space at all in the near future. While this trend has brought down real-estate prices in the office space segment, the savings for companies are also noteworthy. These savings can be utilized in other projects or for the skill development of employees. AI-powered machines are capable of giving feedback on performance, suggestions for personal development, and coaching and evaluation to employees.
The Downside Of Working From Home
- Working permanently from home carries the risk of low productivity and work fatigue amongst employees.
- People will lose the opportunity to form a meaningful bond with their colleagues through social interactions and group discussions.
- Since the boundary between home life and work life is becoming increasingly blurred, employers will also demand employee’s personal time for official work.
What Companies Are Doing To Solve All Issues?
Keeping in mind the fact that many people actually do enjoy working from the office, many companies are trying to implement a new work model wherein, employees will have the opportunity to divide their weekly schedule into home and office.
They will have the option to either come to the office or take their work home if they so desire. This approach has enough room to allow meaningful interaction amongst co-workers and work on collaborative projects.
How Can Anyone be Productive While Working From Home?
To make sure that you stay productive and focus while working from home, here are a few tips that need to be kept in mind:
- Creating a schedule & sticking to it.
- Staying hydrated.
- Taking time out for exercise.
- Planning the day in advance.
- Minimizing all the distractions.
- Trying to complete tasks in chunks before taking any breaks.
- Creating a dedicated workspace for yourself where others can’t disturb you.
- Staying in touch with your co-workers and managers and letting them know about your progress and hiccups.
- Not skipping meals
- Taking appropriate rest.
What Did We Learn?
We can be sure that we are heading into a future where flexible working hours can be the reality for all the employees. Now, workers don’t have to settle for a rigid office-only policy anymore, and organizations will therefore have to ensure that they have adequate networking infrastructure to ensure that their employees remain productive and remain connected.
Many companies are also investing in remote employees’ training programs for upskilling their workforce or just a refresher program. EduTech platforms are offering an interactive and live program for employee training. Compared to in-house training, e-training programs are much more cost-effective and give learners the opportunity to access the learning material whenever they want and from wherever they are.
Given this dramatic shift in work culture, the role managers will now also include energizing their team members, ensuring their mental wellness, and making sure they stay connected to their colleagues.