3 Ways Businesses Can Embrace the Modern Work-From-Home Culture
The workplace has evolved significantly over the past decade, with the demise of on-site working and a 9-5 working day now almost non-existent in many businesses.
Here, Armelle de Madre, Chief People Officer at Arkadin, explains how the evolution of various technologies, such as cloud, widespread adoption of Unified Communication (UC) and enterprise mobile systems has driven globalisation, making it easier for scattered workforces to connect easily across different locations.
SMEs are no longer restricted to single-site offices as modern workplaces and are adopting a more conscious business approach to hiring, flexible hours and, notably, remote working.
Employees have also been a huge factor in driving forward these workplace transformations. Recent research by Pow Wow Now into the working habits of the modern workforce found that over 64% of millennials want the flexibility of working remotely or from home. Additionally, half of millennials also say that workplace culture is a key consideration when choosing a workplace. With this generation set to make up 75% of the total workforce by 2025, these preferences will inevitably change the way we work and businesses must be ready to adapt.
As we enter the next phase of the modern workplace, there are a number ways that business leaders can help their employees to successfully embrace work-from-home culture and use it to create a more productive and fulfilled workforce.
1. Encourage remote working culture from the top
Driving a more flexible approach towards ways of working across an entire business can be challenging, particularly across large, global organisations with increasingly dispersed workforces. To ensure these changes are both accepted and embraced by employees, it is important that this new working culture is firstly championed by senior decision makers in all corners of the business.
Driving a more flexible approach towards ways of working across an entire business can be challenging, particularly across large, global organisations with increasingly dispersed workforces.
This not only entails ensuring that every employee is aware of the policy in place when it comes to the remote working options available to them. Promoting these initiatives from the top down is also vital for encouraging staff members to adopt any changes and start flexing their working pattern. In doing so, senior team members can ensure they have full visibility over exactly how their employees are utilising remote working privileges and help them to work in a way that is most convenient and productive for each member of their team.
2. Provide staff with digital tools for collaboration
Collaboration and engagement with other team members is also widely perceived as a challenge for remote workers. Traditionally, working from home has been recognised for leaving employees feeling isolated, with the lack of means for face-to-face communication with colleagues increasing the chances of them experiencing notions of loneliness or exclusion.
However, advances in technology now enable businesses to adhere to the changing needs of today’s workforce and help them to break down the barriers to a more enjoyable remote working experience for their employees. In particular, the rise of remote working has had a huge hand in the rapid uptake of UC systems globally, so much so that the market is expected to reach a value of $143.5 billion by 2024. Utilising digital tools such as UC not only promotes collaboration and the ability to work from multiple locations, but are also the key helping staff to develop team relationships regardless of time zone or work environment.
Whether it be enhancing video conferencing capabilities or enabling interactive document-sharing, businesses can integrate tools to eradicate the common working-from-home challenges and ensure that every employee has the opportunity to build lasting interactions with their peers quickly and effectively.
3. Nurture work-from-home with training and education
Providing staff with the correct tools is crucial for helping them to work successfully from the comfort of their homes. However, many employers might also face apprehension from their staff when introducing flexible working initiatives, so it is just as important that they take provisions to educate their workforce on the benefits of working from home.
Companies must now proactively promote work-from-home culture and how these modern work practices can directly change the daily lives of their staff for the better. For example, lower levels of stress and a better work-life balance are both now celebrated by-products of flexible working conditions. Meanwhile, giving staff the freedom of choice to work from off-site locations can also be the key to increasing productivity. Promoting these benefits from the very early stages of work-from- home initiatives can help business leaders to improve staff culture and get the best from their team faster.
Companies must now proactively promote work-from-home culture and how these modern work practices can directly change the daily lives of their staff for the better.
As technology advances and staff become equipped with a host of new ways to communicate effectively, businesses must ensure their employees are given the training needed to help them leverage these solutions in the most valuable way. Investing in staff training days and providing ongoing support can help to transform digital tools into the lifeblood of productive remote working and drive collaboration across an entire business.
Ensuring that the work-from-home culture is widely embraced across a business can be very challenging for any company attempting to overhaul long-standing working patterns amongst their staff. However, with the right tools in place and by dedicating the resources to help encourage the adoption of modern working processes, decision-makers can unlock the full benefits of remote working and help to create a happy and productive workforce.