REMOTE WORK:
HOW THE WORKFORCE IS CHANGING

WELCOME TO THE NEW NORMAL

Thanks to Covid-19 many organisations are in a state of flux. With many employees unable to work from one location, organisations have had to change the way they operate.


But what will work look like three years from now? It's highly likely that things will not revert to the way they were. In a recent Institute of Directors survey, 40% of British business leaders said their organisation intended to retain recent adjustments post-lockdown.


The new normal will look different for each organisation. Twitter has declared that employees can work from home indefinitely. Slack has adopted a similar stance. But what about more traditional sectors like banking and insurance? Insurance firm MetLife expect that 40% of their staff will have flexible working arrangements, up from 10%.


What will your organisation might look like? Chances are it will involve an increased proportion of remote work.


The future of the workplace will be digital first, built on a foundation of security and agility, bringing together communication, collaboration and productivity.

EMPLOYEE NEEDS ARE CHANGING

After these rapid changes, employees realise that they are less restricted by physical location when searching for a new role.


Research shows that job-seekers are more likely to choose a company that offers them flexibility. In a survey of over 300 employees at 50 companies, nearly half (42%) indicated a willingness to change jobs for a 10% pay cut and flexible work hours.


Chris Mattey, Partner at Boston Consulting Group believes that 'People are going to be more thoughtful with when, where and how they choose to spend their time — with good reason: to be most effective in their role'.


Still not convinced? Australia's largest job site Seek now allows job seekers to filter their location to be 'Work from home'.

THE EVOLUTION OF THE EMPLOYEE

In the past employees would commonly work a traditional 9-5 hour day, using the company computer with a heavy reliance on email. The new employee can work anywhere at any time, with the focus on their output. They can use any device and have moved away from email,  focusing on collaboration technology like Teams and their company intranet.


Employees' relationships with their organisations have changed with trust and autonomy becoming the key foundations for success. This can only be made possible with the right technology. According to a recent Global Workplace Analytics survey, a full 53% of remote workers reported they were likely to work overtime. That's compared to just 28% of in-office workers.

THE EVOLUTION OF THE OFFICE

In the past, employees were given private office spaces. Organisations then made the transition to open plan spacing to encourage communication and transparency. Addressing research on the negative impacts of a sedentary lifestyle, standing desks have been introduced and pods used to stimulate creativity and provide a resting space for overworked and tired employees.


Further building on communication and relationship building, organisations introduced 'hot desking' where employees would have no fixed desk space, and regularly change seating arrangements. Some might decry this as a depersonalisation of the workspace.  That's up to you to decide. Co-working spaces were the next shift providing a more agile and cost effective model for organisations wanting to reduce investment in a single fixed space.


So where does that leave us now?


The office is not dead! (yet). But a digital-first model helps employees complete their work anywhere, any time, whether it's at their office desk, office cafe, a local park or on their kitchen table at home.

THE NEW WORKFORCE: TECHNOLOGY FOR A PRODUCTIVE & HAPPY WORKPLACE

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