15.06.2020 BLOG

An Active View on the Future of Work

Recent events have put the flexible working agenda into fast-forward. Many companies have rolled out large scale remote working policies – in a matter of weeks. Some organisations were prepared for more remote working, but many businesses found this to be a hugely stressful time to organise for their employees. COVID-19 brought a speed of change like no other. Almost overnight, the country was shut down, and 87% of office workers found themselves working from home.

In turn, the heartbeat of business life became totally dependent on technology and mobile connectivity. Making Active Digital and our services more crucial than ever before. According to a report from Telefonica O2 named, The flexible future of work, employees will now seem reluctant to give up their new way of working when the lockdown is lifted. Additional information from the survey showed that nearly half (45%) of the workforce believe flexible working will increase permanently, and a third (33%) expect to increase the amount they work from home by at least three days a week.

These infographics from Telefonica O2 shows opinions with facts to start exploring what flexible working could look like in the future.

Telefonica O2 pulled together the views of 2,000 people to help us to understand the future of flexible working. In summary, they asked people about the impact of COVID-19 on the world of business and how they feel about flexible working.
Employers who have ignored requests for flexible working must now embrace the positives of these changes, which will impact the way we think about work in the years to come and could cause a rise in employee productivity and well-being.

Here are three things to consider with the future of work: –

1. Productivity Levels

This won’t apply to every job, but it turns out many people can actually work from home productively. We wondered how many UK employees who have been working from home would prefer to continue a work-from-home policy? What are your thoughts on this topic?

Employees generally appreciate a company that allows them to work from home and research has suggested that this could also boost productivity for the employer. Here are some interesting survey results from www.finder.com

• 65% of workers said they would be more productive in a home office than a normal office
• 75% of workers say they will be more productive due to reduced distractions
• 83% of employees feel they do not need an office to be productive
• Two-thirds of employers’ report increased productivity for remote workers compared to in-office workers

2. Your Office is not Completely Disappearing

It is important to remember that the world is not all working from home. Many offices still exist, and many organisations are still going into an office environment where it is necessary (Active Digital included). We have a team working hard to despatch all our daily mobile communications orders, which have become more important than ever for our customers. For, let us be honest, no one wants to be without a working mobile device right now. Good technology is key.
Offices will still exist. However, they will look different. Big trading floors or other open floor plans may be replaced in some cases by cubicles or other partitions for health reasons. Social distancing regulations being maintained at work is a current challenge being tackled by company directors and managers across the world. But if there is now thing I notice about the good British public; it is a will to carry on. To get the regulations in place as soon as possible, so we can get back to business.

3. Wellness at Work Matters

There are a number of lessons we have all learnt from the COVID-19 pandemic. Firstly, we have learnt that the blur between home-work life is real. Many are struggling to divide the two, which is causing a heightened mental load.
The blurring of the lines between personal and professional life and an inability to unplug from the “always on” virtual working day have been causing increased anxiety levels among the UK’s home workers. Wellness at work is important and here are some great ways to look after yourself, and your team.

For Managers

If you manage a team, make sure that your team has opportunities to tell you how their current way of working is going. It is important that they are able to talk to you and you can listen to any concerns that they have. Some of us cope better with ‘change’ more than others and so let your team know you can hear their feedback and you will work through any problems together. If you are working on reduced staff numbers, think about making sure that the staff you do have at work have a manageable workload.

For Everyone – Getting Outside

Outside of your work hours, it is crucial that you make time to do all the things you usually enjoy doing. If you’re not self-isolating, try and get outside at least once a day. Just walking for 20 minutes during your work break can do wonders for your mental health.

For Directors and Managers

We highly recommend our ILG One App to monitor Wellness Team spirit and camaraderie can also be maintained remotely. Perhaps right now, it is more important than ever.

Managing Director, Richard Groves says, We built and created the ILG One app four years ago because I could see how important wellbeing was to manage. I worked with my developers to build a platform whereby organisations could easily communicate, instant message each other and monitor the wellness of team members – all from one secure platform (accessible via web, iOS and Android). In fact, during lockdown it has been fantastic to see how some of our team have been uploading their fitness workouts to our app for other team members to try. It has been great to see how our employees are enjoying the flexibility to exercise when they want to or choose when they take a break or eat their lunch.”

Business Director, Jo Wimble-Groves says, “if you are anything like Active Digital, work is still getting done, just in different ways than before. Business as unusual has now become business as usual.”

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