The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred significant debates regarding the benefits of remote working. Nonetheless, a Kaspersky poll discovered that one-third of respondents felt dissatisfied with this arrangement due to reasons such as the absence of a conducive work environment, challenges with task prioritisation, and possible interruptions from family members.
With 2023 fast approaching, employers are formulating methods of providing prolonged options for remote work. As we transition out of the pandemic, it is vital to heed the opinions of personnel who do not wish to work remotely while simultaneously exploring methods to improve the experience of working from home. It is equally important to contemplate how office work will differ in the future.
The COVID-19 outbreak has introduced additional intricacies to the matter of remote working; yet, it has also provided an opening for enterprises to adapt to the diverse demands of their workforce. This editorial delves into possible remedies that companies can adopt to guarantee the satisfaction of their personnel.
Recognize the Varied Aspects of Human Needs
The perceived equilibrium between work and personal life among remote workers is a key incentivizer behind the paradigm’s sustained popularity. It has been asserted that this has resulted in the improvement of both physical and emotional health by reducing commuting times while affording more quality time to spend with loved ones and pets. Many individuals find this alternative to traditional office setups more preferential.
For numerous individuals, the prolonged spell of remote working has posed several difficulties for various reasons. Isolation can significantly impact one’s physical and emotional wellbeing, especially if they are already grappling with depression. Conversely, some may experience difficulty working from home due to the absence of resources or space, coupled with distracting elements. For others, the absence of social interaction could hamper their productivity.
Enterprises must recognize the different outlooks of their staff regarding remote work and contemplate how telecommuting can cater to their distinct requirements.
It is crucial to acknowledge and address the perspectives of team members who voice their dissatisfaction with remote work arrangements. Engaging in dialogues with such personnel to recognize and tackle any concerns they may have with the transition to a completely home-based work setup can lead to the discovery of feasible alternatives that satisfy everyone.
We require improved tools.Individuals who cannot afford adequate equipment to establish an ergonomic workstation may endure physical discomfort from sitting in an unsuitable position for extended periods. Providing, or subsidizing, the requisite resources could be advantageous.
Contribute funds towards my relocation expenses.Certain personnel may encounter difficulties working remotely due to the absence of adequate space to do so. This can be remedied if their employer finances their coworking costs.
Wellness support for the mind.Certain individuals may find it challenging to work independently from home. Comprehensive insurance coverage can help with mental health concerns.
Workplace gatherings and social events.Individuals who do not favour remote work arrangements may benefit from more regular interactions with their colleagues. Deliberate scheduling of enjoyable activities during afternoons or evenings, or conducting meetings at the workplace with opportunities for socializing after, can be helpful.
Adopt a Hybrid Approach
It may seem daunting to envision a compromise between the pre-pandemic ‘all-in-the-office’ practice and the current fully remote teams. Nevertheless, a hybrid approach could potentially provide the advantages of both, providing multiple prospects.
- A smaller, centralized workspace where personnel can establish their own work schedules or “shifts” and perform a significant portion of their duties from home.
- Approaches that prioritize remote work arrangements, with in-person meetings and customer visits being the exception rather than the norm.
- With the flexibility to work remotely whenever required, this approach focuses on in-person work at the office.
A hybrid approach may be the most appropriate choice, offering the creation of multiple effective models to cater to different requirements. Employees can operate from wherever they find most efficient, whether it be the workplace, home, or elsewhere.
Recognize Indicators of Isolation
If necessary for the organization, it is permissible to move entirely to a Work From Home (WFH) arrangement. Workplace regulations frequently necessitate frequent revisions, and not every employee will benefit from each modification. If certain personnel encounter difficulties acclimating to the revised system, an action plan must be implemented to ensure their success.
If an employee is highly valuable to the company, they may continue in their position for as long as required while utilizing the company’s resources to search for a different job. If the individual rethinks their decision to depart, a letter of recommendation will be issued, as well as an open invitation to come back.
Heading Towards a Novel Normal
Post the pandemic outbreak, we were compelled to make enduring modifications to our operational procedures. Remote work on an extensive level is not only possible but in certain scenarios preferred, especially for personnel who had to make significant adjustments to operate at an office. However, not everyone shares this perspective. Some individuals don’t necessitate a peaceful environment to be productive, whereas others merely prefer the presence of peers.
Fortunately, companies can employ imaginative techniques for managing their human resources. Several have discovered that using a blend of methods that allows personnel an array of choices to accomplish their duties leads to superior outcomes.