Saturday, May 15, 2021

Remote Working Norms to Persist Even After the COVID-19 Threat

COVID-19 has altered the concept of workplace forever – the work from home mandate is here to stay permanently.

As the Coronavirus persists globally, a vast majority of businesses have been operating
remotely. According to the latest Gartner study, many organizations are planning to
continue a remote working structure.

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This is applicable even after the COVID-19 is no longer a risk. Most businesses today are looking beyond the pandemic and are expected to face new challenges. Gartner has surveyed 127 company leaders and came up with the fact that managing the modern hybrid workforce is going to be highly complicated.

The study revealed that nearly 82% of business leaders are preparing to let their employees continue to work from home for at least some of the time. Another 47% are planning to allow employees to follow the same permanently.

The pandemic has enabled worldwide businesses to experiment with the wide-scale remote work pattern. Besides, plans for business resiliency and employee expectations – both are being tested during the lockdowns. As a result, looking ahead, this is only going to be tough to go back to the way things used to be.

As mentioned by Elisabeth Joyce, VP of Gartner HR Practice Advisory, in the company blog
post, “The question now facing many organizations is not how to manage a remote
workforce, but how to manage a more complex, hybrid workforce. While remote work isn’t new, the degree of remote work moving forward will change how people work together to get their job done.”

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Keeping in mind the current scenario, more organizations need to follow the employee-
centric approach – keeping in mind the wellbeing of the business and employees. Hence,
while transitioning to a permanent hybrid work structure, they will need to concentrate on
more than just a change in handling widespread workforces. Organizations will also need to
focus on figuring out how to continue their meeting goals and technical hurdles (if any).

As per the study, along with the existing remote work allowances, organizations are setting
up flexible days (43%) and flexible hours (42%). In addition, some are planning to transition to workdays of four with 10-hour a day (15%). Clearly, there is going to be a modification in policies and operation patterns, no matter how an organization decides to segment it. The only concern to the business leaders is in maintaining the corporate cultures where workers are not in a position to work in a face-to-face environment.

However, for businesses to succeed in the new world of hybrid work culture – focusing on
achieving the right employee experiences and corporate culture with frequent meetings and
virtual activities, will be important.  As noted by Brian Kropp, Chief of Research at Gartner HR Practice, “Both facets help ensure organizations achieve the financial, reputation and
talent outcomes that will drive business outcomes and competitive advantage.”

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