Certainly, the coronavirus pandemic has been a strong catalyst for remote work. Indeed, it provides the option for staff members to work from home while protecting them against Covid-19. However, a couple of months later what was considered at that time as the right move is starting to be problematic.
A. Challenges of remote work.
Many employees are facing a mounting of issues with the new methodology.
Limited contact with colleagues creates a vacuum in our lives. That vacuum intrigues and on rare occasions questions our sense of belonging. That is because a workplace is first a foremost a community.
- Limited information
In the workplace, it is easier to swing by at the desk of the right staff member to get to the latest. That critical piece of information that is often vehiculated through informal channels breaks or makes careers. As an illustration, if a junior staff needs a quick help, he can just swing by the desk of a senior and quick gets the help he needs.
Truly, most virtual meeting technologies offers great collaborative tools, but nothing replaces a physical room brainstorming session.
- Reaction time
Remote work has made it difficult for quicker emergency reaction. That is because again it is challenging to just swing by a colleague’s desk with a pressing situation. Plus all the home distractions for those working remotely from home especially if you have kids.
- Talent development
Perhaps this one of the biggest issues. Younger crowd needs a specific environment away from distraction to build discipline and work ethic. It is not just about the output but also about the non-conventional professional requirement of a work environment such as body languages and personal relationship.
- Cyber threat
Despite enormous effort deployed by corporations to facilitate staff home upgrade of tech equipment with secured infrastructures the risk is still extremely high. Mostly, because the IT department can’t control every single member of a staff household internet activity.
B. Hybrid model
Acknowledging the effect on employee mood, some companies are pushing for a hybrid model. In fact, this model would give employees the possibility to be in the office for a limited number of days. For instance, instead of 5 days a week at the office, some employees now work just 3 days a week. The rest of the weekday is finalized remotely.
Even better, in some companies you can just show up twice a week for team meetings. This would enable staff to go over critical points. Nevertheless, what we are experiencing now is flexibility based on experience. Younger crowd are required to have some physical presence at work while the most experience can continue working from home.
Still some companies are not having it anymore and are openly asking all employees to return to office building.
Perhaps echoing all the issues mentioned above. Still, another reason is financial. Indeed, most companies pay multi years commercial leases with heavy investment in making office spaces appealing for staff members. It is definitely not an excellent choice to just have the facilities seating there with an empty space.
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