woman weraing a mask while working remote, from home, during the pandemic

What COVID-19 Means for The Future of Remote Work

Business

A global virus outbreak is among few things anyone could have predicted.  Our mindsets are still adapting to the various changes in almost every aspect of our lives. The consequences of the pandemic are still not quite clear and defined. However, while we’re steadily reaching a new normal in our reality, there are some predictions we can make especially regarding remote work.

This is all based on the development of things so far. In fact, some trends we had to invent are here to stay. Requirements of both social and physical distance in combination with movement restriction have created a necessity for remote work.

It turned out to have many advantages for employees; so many companies have announced the continuation of the trend even without the restriction measures. Let’s see what the implications for the future are.  

Increase in popularity of it

There are numerous reasons for which most people have embraced working from home with ease. Many employees feel like they are losing a lot of time by commuting to work. This period of time can be rearranged to doing chores. The other option is allowing yourself to enjoy your hobby a bit longer. It doesn’t matter if we are speaking about quarter of an hour daily, or a couple of hours. This new lifestyle enables better time management, while all the tasks are still successfully performed.

The biggest drawback happened to people who don’t really have adequate space in their home for working without distractions. In other words, mostly people living with roommates or larger families.

We would like to emphasize that was only the case because the change was an abrupt one. Even that category of employees would be able to make different arrangements and be satisfied with the deal.

Consider the advanced technology we have in 2020. Do we all have to be in the same room to have a meeting? There are many online platforms that are there to meet all the meetings and video conferencing needs of any business.

For the employers, remote work also means not having to spend a large amount of a yearly budget. Paying for things like offices and utilities adds up. Some office space should exist, and occasional important meetings should be held in person. However, the vast majority of them are perfectly fine if conducted via camera.   

Data-centric evaluation of performance

We understand the importance of making a good impression in person. However, remote work has the implication that everything related to evaluations and promotions will be decided by the actual data. This is obviously a good thing.

Direct measures of everyone’s performance will basically result in everyone getting what they deserve. This would mean creating a thoroughly planned system including all the relevant variables, time-sheets, reviews and reports.

Such qualitative and quantitative measures might even increase the productivity levels within your employees. It creates a healthy competitive spirit, and will surely create a better overview for you as an employer.   

Mental health of employees

Not having to go to the office every day, among other things, means your employees have more flexible working hours. As long as they regularly meet their deadlines, they won’t have to worry about not scheduling a thing ever during the nine to five periods.

This can be extremely beneficial for people, allowing them more freedom to create their unique perfect daily routine. This will definitely boost your employees’ morale and productivity. Furthermore, they will acquire a whole range of new skills by adapting to these changes and become more creative on the way. 

Cybersecurity measures

Remember when we’ve mentioned all the money you can save by not renting a huge premise for offices and cubicles? Well, a portion of it will have to be invested in another way of making sure your relevant data is confidential, and that no one else has access to it.

A person working from home or in a local cafe triggers the question of just how safe their network is. This is why you need to make sure to implement all the precaution measures related to a data breach, such as investing in private hosting services, creating a VPN (a Virtual Private Network) for each of your employees, and similarly.

This goes regardless of how big or small your company is. A secure connection will encrypt all of your data on a private server, making everyone’s online actions virtually untraceable.

Conclusion

There is no way we can tell with certainty what is to follow, but we can make an educated guess based on the current state of the world. Changing our habits has become a necessity, and we must adapt to the circumstances as quickly as we are able to do so.

That is what being flexible is all about, and if our attitude is positively oriented, we will overcome all the obstacles on the way, perhaps even gain some valuable knowledge and/or skills on the way.

Basically, your state of mind will dictate the terms, and you should turn to a proactive way of thinking. It is what it is, and you will either accept that fact, or stay behind, the choice is all yours!

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