Sridhar Iyengar, MD, Zoho Europe comments:
“Remote working, whether full time, hybrid part time, or ‘choose your own’ work from home model, has clearly become the operational structure of choice for many formerly full-time office based workplaces, and not just due to employee demand. Remote working has cost, efficiency and time-saving perks that many organisations are already capitalising on, and once certain implementation challenges are overcome, organisations will be presented with even more opportunities, including a larger and more diverse recruitment pool. This is because hiring will no longer be contained to a certain location, allowing for equal opportunity regardless of gender, geography, socio-economic background or any previously limiting circumstances which presented barriers to recruitment.
“Businesses that are currently struggling to maintain productivity, efficiency, staff motivation or a collaborative workplace culture in the wake of implementing a long term work from home strategy have most probably failed to effectively equip their organisation with remote working specialist technology, or failed to adapt their operational approach to the new working normal. Or they may have failed to engage their employees along with the journey and help them both understand the reasons for longer-term change and ensure they are fully trained up and understand the benefits of any new digital tools introduced to enable new working models.
“In encouraging a positive and proactive workplace culture whilst remote working, senior decision makers should not simply attempt to replicate an office environment from a digital setting, but instead play to the strengths enabled by remote work. This might include increasing personal autonomy for employees, allowing them to take regular breaks away from screens, and shift away from traditional 9-5 working hours.
“Furthermore, introducing cloud-enabled tools and applications designed to help aid communication, workflows or in-document collaboration, for example, is imperative to facilitating a flexible and productive workplace, and one which can seamlessly adapt to changing workplace conditions, including employees on the move, or workers who only travel to the office on a part-time basis.”