Are employees ready to come back to the office?
As the 2021 summer is set to kick off on June 20, more and more businesses are hoping to use this time frame as the starting point to return to the office. Whether is it a slow transition process over the summer months or a hard target date, many companies feel this is the time to try to return to the office and attempt to get back to 'normal'. However there are the looming questions: are employees willing and wanting to come back, and what exactly is normal?
1/3 of Workers May Quit if Required to Return to the Office
According to a Yahoo Finance article which quotes a recent Robert Half survey, nearly 1 in 3 professionals claim they may quit if required to return to the office. Multiple reasons (or excuses depending on your viewpoint) attempt to justify why employees do not want to return to the office. Flexible time frames, relaxed dressed codes, and less on-site demands were quoted as primary reasons, but after a year of such dramatic change many of these explanations really point to a redefinition of 'normalcy'. Employees and employers have become accustomed to working remotely. A PwC survey at the beginning of 2021 noted that 29% of employees want to be remote five days a week, and 55% want to be remote three days of the week. However 68% of management believe workers should be in the office a minimum of three days a week, with over 65% of management considering it 'very important' to produce productivity. It really begs to show how effective workers can be when working remotely.
Employees Should Consider Pitfalls if Working from Home
It is easy for employees to focus in on and promote the positives of working remotely, but there are also issues that can adversely affect employees who chose to work remotely. An in-depth side by side comparison should be considered carefully. At present there seems to be a more deliberate focus on the pros of a hybrid work environment, but employees should consider the following flip side or 'cons' of working remotely:
- Blurred lines between private time and work time. There should be a proper delineation between work and private life to help maintain a healthy attitude towards work and family. It needs to clearly known who are you accountable to and at what times.
- Relationships with coworkers can suffer due to a lack of deeper interaction. Some employees do not agree with 'at home work' or their home does not provide the ability to do so. That can create unforeseen judgement or friction between employees.
- Lack of community and teamwork can result in a lack of motivation.
- Unmonitored performance and those frequent breaks are easy habits to start and even harder habits to quit.
- Lack of office equipment, security concerns and basic help on items.
- Distractions and lack of a good working environment.
- Decreased productivity - Though 'more work' can be done at home, simply doing more work does not result in more productive or actual useful work.
- Fewer career advancement opportunities due to a lack of visibility.
The items noted above are pretty straight forward and many employees still may think the pros out way the cons, but it should be noted that these are issues being created by hybrid work environments. These cons are in some ways 'self-inflicted' side effects from working remotely that arguably would not be an issue if employees were at the office. Thus it is imperative that employees who chose to work remotely be aware of some of the consequences and not just focus on the positives.
Are the protocols, surveys and concerns addressed for a hybrid or remote work environment?
Needless to say there are many valid points and concerns for both hybrid and remote working environments. Both management and employees need to be heard and address both sides of the matter openly and be transparent about all concerns to everyone involved. In addition all CDC guidelines should be considered and followed properly for the safe return of those working in the office. No matter which side you take, businesses have had to adapt to a year of remote work, and it appears a 'new normal' has set in - and with it, a new set of expectations. Those expectations need to be properly defined and accessible to everyone within the company. Firms should have a clear HR policy indicating expectations, and employee should have the means to prove their accountability, visibility and communicate effectively as well. Real Clear Software provides multiple ways to assist with all of these items: From discussion boards with team features to keep topics and business items organized, to document storage, score cards, rating systems and custom data tracking - all of which can be used to evaluate location performance efficiency. It will be interesting to see how successful this new work environment experiment will result in, and Real Clear Software will be there to help measure and validate it.
Real Clear Software's commercial and cloud based real estate management software offers multiple features designed to help businesses with multiple locations. RCS integrates portfolio, transaction and document management, project management, data security, performance measurement, data analysis & comparison, real time data access, stakeholder collaboration, CRM, demographics, and generation of various reports. For more information on from Real Clear Software, visit https://realclear.software, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone (949) 445-6220.