COVID-19 has changed what it means to work from home, and with so many businesses now doing it, is this the future? Strive for Talent discuss.
Australian business operations may look very different when the COVID-19 lockdown is over. Employers and employees will begin to trickle back into their workplaces, learning how to commute again, and get dressed for interactions that reach far beyond video calls. But will things ever go back to normal? In short, the answer is no. We will all be changed by this experience, but that isn’t always a negative. It’s predicted that the current working from home situation will shift the way companies do business and have a deep impact on workplace flexibility.
Most people, especially parents, strive for flexible working arrangements and now companies have a better insight into how that works, and how they can properly manage these desired arrangements.
Office versus home
This pandemic is the first time in our history businesses have experienced such a large scale of employees working from home. While some may desperately await returning to the office, others are feeling productive and happy in their current circumstances, and that is where change may spark.
With companies able to recoup some loses and save money by downsizing their workspace, those who enjoy working remotely may not be required in the office as much as before. After all, with Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack and other communication technology and audio-visual conferencing platforms available, we can all still be connected, no matter where we are.
A time to learn
Thrown into lockdown and relying heavily on technology to complete their work, communicate with colleagues and clients, those with less experience with technology have most likely benefited from a quick and deep learning curve. The more people who understand how remote communication works, the better companies get at expanding their reach, and this lockdown has served that purpose well.
While this may be a winning situation on most fronts, there are some factors to consider. Being in an office environment helps to establish coordination across the board, build insights and relationships, and gives people a chance to connect personally as well as professionally. All of which are crucial to a pleasant and constructive workplace, and in turn a better product or service.
Looking at life after lockdown
There will be no quick fix after the COVID-19 lockdown, and we assume there will be many conversations with employers and employees about what works best for themselves and the company. All we know is that the new normal will become something new once again.