work from home

Work from Home: Covid

Covid virus has forced all of us to look into remote work and I am sure that many companies are not equipped to handle it. The current virus has caught us unprepared, companies in future need to be much more prepared regarding such circumstances.

Comfort comes with familiarity, it is important that companies work towards making remote work model a success. Work from home is a promising approach, it is a win for both employees and the employer.

Companies that implement flexible remote work arrangements believe they benefit from:

  • Increased productivity;
  • Decreased employee turnover;
  • Increased ability to attract talent;
  • Decreased sick days;
  • Decreased overhead;
  • Reduced environmental imprint.

 Employees say:

  • They are more productive and get more work done.
  • They appreciate the flexibility.
  • They are happier because they enjoy the flexibility.
  • They feel more valued than those in the office.
  • They feel it is beneficial to their family and their well-being.
  • They have increased job satisfaction.

There are basically three types of remote work.

  • As-Needed Remote Work – Someone who needs to work from home on an as needed basis or a company emergency situation, e.g., a sick child or a snow storm.
  • A Flexible Work Arrangement – someone who works from home part of the time on a regular basis.
  • A Remote Worker – someone who works from home 100% of the time.

The biggest concern in implementing remote work for employer is loss of productivity since there is always a concern that employee would misuse the privilege rather using it responsibly. Thus it is important that a strong monitoring mechanism is built to seek desired results.

There is a need for educating the employer regarding how they have to conduct themselves when at home. It is important that employee build an ecosystem which is conducive for work e.g. Reinforcing work rules with family, friends and neighbors. Having a desk for work, dressing up like you dress up in office. These are some of the suggestions.

Recommendation for implementing

  • Evaluate each of the positions and determine if an employee’s physical presence is required full-time, part-time or never, except for periodic meetings.
  • Decide which remote work programs might be viable work options for you.
  • Define the goals clearly so that a strong review mechanism could be build.
  • Identify which employees have sufficient institutional knowledge and experience to be considered for a flex/remote work arrangement.
  • Evaluate the different communication and collaborative tools such as Skype and GoToMeeting.
  • Develop a guide for each type of remote work option.
  • Train the entire staff on how to use the communication and collaborative tools.

Summary : Research has clearly shown that for most employees who have any type of remote work arrangement, they: • Met their goals more reliably • Were more productive • Were happier • Were healthier. Businesses have benefited greatly as well with increased productivity, talent retention and lower overhead. There is a need for employees to act responsibly so that employer build confidence in this model.