Gear Up for Greater Remote Work and Collaboration
- July 02, 2020
As we look to predict which habits will rise and fall in a post-pandemic world, it doesn’t take a crystal ball to see that working from home is here to stay. In a recent pulse survey conducted with Dynata, our research revealed that 85% of U.S. employees currently working from home would like to continue doing so at least one day a week, even after the pandemic subsides. At this time, I would place my bet on the former.
As explained by Charles Duhigg in his book The Power of Habit, any habit has three aspects — a cue, a routine and a reward. Bring them together, and you end up with a repeating trait that plays out almost on autopilot. Let’s examine working from home through this lens.
The unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has provided the cue for those organizations who could adopt Work From Home (WFH) on a massive scale. After resolving initial technical obstacles, many employees and organizations settled into a routine. And, as the adage goes, any change occurring over an extended period becomes a habit.
In terms of rewards, many remote employees report impressive work-life benefits. Our survey found that nearly half of all employees (48%) experienced greater flexibility, 38% felt they have more time to focus and 34% appreciated not losing time to commutes back and forth to work.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average, one-way commute time is 26.1 minutes. For a full-time, 5-day-a-week job that adds up to 4.35 hours of weekly drive time, and more than 200 hours per year.
As many of my formerly office-bound teammates attest, (often during Microsoft Teams or Zoom calls), working from home is not without its challenges. 35% of those surveyed cited experiencing more distractions while working remotely, 31% preferred face-to-face interactions, and 29% experienced technology challenges.
Double-clicking on remote work challenges, 42% felt their employer had not given them the necessary training needed to use collaboration tools (such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, and Slack to name a few). Nearly 40% felt their company didn’t have the right culture for working from home, and 38% believed their company lacked the necessary security.
Despite its challenges, an overwhelming 83% of those we surveyed said that being able to work remotely will be an important consideration for their next job opportunity. Clearly, WFH is here to stay — at least to a greater degree. Those organizations that address the cultural and technological friction inherent in WFH stand to gain ground on their competition now and in the future.
As a leader in workplace services, NTT DATA can help you address your immediate workplace challenges and better prepare for what’s next. Find out how our secure, cloud-powered Dynamic Workplace accelerators solutions can help your organization adapt to this new habit.