What is the future of flexible working?
The global pandemic did not only impact the world of work, but it also turned it upside down. In 2020, most of us were forced to transition to long-term remote work, which comes with its own unique set of challenges and benefits for both employer and employee.
With restrictions slowly relaxing the question of whether employers can expect their employees to return to the office arises. The HR software company, Personio, conducted a study that found that one in four UK employees would resign from their current job if their employer forced them to return to the office full-time. Instead, the majority of employees are interested in flexible working.
How should businesses tackle the potential move back to the office? Modern businesses should consult and listen to their staff to implement flexible working solutions that work for both the employees and the business. In February 2021, the Financial Times published an article sharing the fact that most of the businesses in the UK will be adopting a hybrid working policy going forward. This included businesses such as HSBC, BT, Virgin Media, and Deutsche Bank.
How can Astec IT help adapt to a hybrid work environment?
As Astec IT has always been following a remote working policy we were able to incorporate our personal experience of working from home, into our advice for companies that had to rearrange their company setup during the beginning of the pandemic.
Some of the benefits of remote work consists of:
– Improved employee satisfaction (e.g., better work-life balance, saving money and being able to schedule work around other commitments)
– Higher productivity due to better work-life balance and fewer distractions Improved environmental impact due to the lack of a commute
– Positive effect on mental health (e.g., more time to go for a walk or eat healthy)
– Improved health implications (e.g., lower risk of passing a cold, or even coronavirus, on to co-workers)
Due to these reasons, we decided early on that we wanted to be a remote organisation. Through our own experience of running a remote business, we are able to help our clients establish themselves in either a remote or hybrid work environment – no matter how big or small the change might be for the business. We are not only able to ensure a high level of employee satisfaction by decreasing downtime, but we are also able to increase productivity and improve remote collaboration so that your business is on the right track to achieve its goals.
Are you prepared for the future of flexible work?
Before deciding whether or not your employees should return to the office or maintain to work remotely, you should consider the technical aspects of your office to avoid a large amount of IT issues on return. Have you left any old devices in the office? These will need to be updated or securely wiped and recycled.
– Is the desk layout covid safe? Furniture will need to be rearranged in order to accommodate social distancing. You will need to ensure that enough power points and ethernet ports are available.
– Do all employees have the equipment they need to work from the office? Noise-cancelling headsets for example might be beneficial when it comes to being back in a less quiet office space.
– Are the phones updated and are working correctly? In line with new staff, operations, or processes, phone systems might need to be updated.
If you are interested in finding out more about flexible working or you are looking to take on an IT provider, contact us here. We currently offer a free IT consultation, so don’t forget to fill out our IT Workplace Assessment, so we can come back to you with our recommendations.