With the current unprecedented situation, insecurity and consistent online panic and discussion it can be hard to see the positives, but they are there, and I wanted to share one I am seeing and long may it continue!
Many of our clients have split their teams with the majority working from home or at other locations (secondary offices, DR sites etc) and I am hoping this proves to be a long-term positive for home and flexible working.
We know the technology has been there for many years and has consistently improved but in my experience the culture or belief in it has not, so it is either not used or actively discouraged.
I have often heard “My boss doesn’t like remote working” or “We don’t have remote access” or “It’s not something we do” and many of those obstacles have never been really challenged. In the current situation those barriers are removed, and people and cultures are forced to make it work.
I am hoping this forced reaction leads to a more pro-active and open approach to flexibility.
Historically I have seen those that offer flexible working from home see direct results in strong staff retention. I know personally those who have never looked outside their current employer as they are able to work full time hours on their terms, splitting the day to balance family life and their career (logging on once they had completed both school run and bed time) a win for both employer and employee and a situation that was not reflected at competitors.
As we see the work force changing and the expectations of new generations include the requirement of flexibility as standard this will be even more important. Many of the clients I recruit for would say they can be flexible but realistically is it what I see on a daily basis? No, I am sorry to say it isn’t but now when its been proved to work there is no going back. Fingers crossed I can share more roles in the future where the working hours arrangement can be tailored to suit everyone.