Everyone nowadays seems to be obsessed with talking about the pandemic. Be it countries, world leaders or economies everyone is dreading about the present while thinking about the future. Companies are no different. With large parts of their workforces stuck up at home, work from home has suddenly become the talk of the town. Employees cribbing about the 8 am work calls to bosses worrying about their team’s quarterly targets, each one of us has his or her own opinion on this new way of working. The pandemic is going to completely redefine the work-life balance in the country and the world.
Physical Offices: A Status Symbol
The growth of co-working spaces may prove to be a boon for all companies around the globe. Many co-working spaces like WeWork have sprung up in the IT-sectors of Gurgaon and Bengaluru. Thus in the future, many companies can encourage their employees to work from these spaces and thus reduce inter-personal contact and overhead costs. Owing to this, future employees can look for companies that have their own physical workspaces and offices. The high and mighty office structures owned by a company may become a status symbol and the phrase ‘ I am going to the office’ could get a whole new meaning.
End of Business Travel
Fancy business class seats and lavish lunches billed on the “company card’ could become a thing seen only on the large screen. The pandemic is causing the travel sector to completely revolutionise and with rising concerns of infection, all in-person conferences and large gatherings will not materialise at least in the foreseeable future. Big tech conglomerates like Microsoft have already cancelled all in-person events till July of 2021. They are constantly improving their e-conferencing software to accommodate thousands of people at the same time. Microsoft has already cancelled its ‘Inspire’ event scheduled for September and is expected to back out from all other inter-company meets too. Thus business travelling can become a thing of the past very soon.
Growth of Emails And Video Calls
Emails and video calls are steadily rising. With thousands of people working from home the traffic on portals like zoom and Gmail has increased many fold. In the future, this rapid increase can become the new normal. Companies can encourage e-meetings and develop their own video calling software. T.C.S or Tata Consultancy Services has developed its
Mandatory Medical Checkups
The limited number of top staff of a company that will actually come to the “office” will have to go through a rigorous medical checkup. Each company will record temperatures and antibody details in order to ensure that they do not spread any infectious disease to their colleagues. Many companies like Amazon, Walmart, Home Depot and Starbucks have already started the process. Experts say that as long as companies do not discriminate between the staff based on their colour, religion or economic background, this move will go a long way in maintaining a healthy office setup.
Coworkers to Become More Than Just Colleagues
Coworkers are often just a bunch of people who happen to be together by chance and do not encourage jest or socialisation in the workplace. Psychologists say that this will change, as many people are working from home and when they finally go to their workplaces they will be happy to see each other and the relationships between them are expected to become deeper and warmer. So, goodbye sad work lunches and hello happy faces.
Home Office Stipends
Workers usually have greater access to cutting edge technology in their offices than their homes. But with permanent work from home positions, this is going to change. Companies will have to give home office stipends so that workers can purchase or rent the necessary equipment to work from home.
While the phrase ‘work from home’ is going to be the talk of every family pretty soon, some changes need to be made in both societal and work setup. A SCIKEY Mind Match study revealed that only 0.2% of Indian work-from-home I.T workers actually function at their highest productivity. Reluctance to learn new things and engage in inefficient communication are the main factors hindering their progress. The study suggested that companies’ will have to allocate tasks according to the worker’s personality traits and a ‘one cut for all’ system will not work here.
Although some wrinkles still need to be ironed out, work from home is surely going to change the fabric of the country’s working experience.