As the world around us changes due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizations have had to find ways of working from home. A worldwide lockdown has been implemented, with only essential workers allowed to leave their homes for work. However, as the pandemic grows in prominence, it seems that things may stay the same for some time. With certain workplaces opening as of necessity, particular Standard Operating Procedures are being followed to maintain safety standards. Moreover, a few companies (those who can), have implemented this work from home policy indefinitely. Is this the new normal? In this article, we will investigate this matter in depth.
The Digital Age
20 odd years ago working from home would not even be a possibility. The advent of the internet and various online platforms has facilitated remote jobs. Now, millions of people earn money by working from their homes for organizations that may not even have a physical presence. The likes of Facebook Shops and Amazon have replaced physical stores. Workplaces have shifted online with the likes of Slack and Facebook Workplace. The possibilities have become endless thanks to the technological advancements we are making every day, making work from home a real possibility.
Global Employment Market
The imposition of a global lockdown has brought many problems for job seekers and those currently employed. Many have found themselves unemployed and searching for jobs. However, with problems arise opportunities to solve them. With lockdowns in place, every organization is working remotely (more or less). Hence, this gives jobseekers an opportunity to work for organizations that may not be in the geographical vicinity. They can now work for anyone around the world sitting at their homes. This also gives employers an opportunity to hire internationally acclaimed employees without having the hassle to relocate them. A win-win situation for both.
Cutting down on costs
This pandemic may have taught many companies a valuable lesson. So much of their work can be done online, without having to use expensive office or work space. Flexible work from home hours and remote working opportunities has made them cut down on expenses like rent and utilities. Workers’ transport costs no longer need to be covered. However, essential workers like supply chain or factory workers still need to be catered to, along with increased costs of safety.
Companies extending work from home policies
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, has announced that all his employees can continue working from home indefinitely. Mark Zuckerberg followed suit with a similar announcement. However, the catch is that those moving out of San Francisco may need to take a pay cut according to the salary rate appropriate for their new homes. It is not surprising to see these tech-based online companies shifting workplaces online. This move, however, will be much more difficult for businesses dealing with physical goods and services. They may have to shift most of their operations online in order to adapt to a continuously changing world.
Is this the way forward?
Working from home has become somewhat of a trend evolving from necessity. We may soon see many companies follow in the footsteps of Facebook and Twitter to announce indefinite work from home policies. This may be very difficult to imagine at the moment, but it may be the new reality we have to live with and adapt to. Those who adapt to these circumstances the quickest will be able to survive. Those who do not will get left behind. It is up to you to decide which one you want to be.
Let us know in the comments below how you’ve found working or studying from home. Is this the new normal? Only time will tell.