Will Remote Working Definitively Stay After the Pandemic?

    Various studies indicate that more than half of employees worldwide value remote working. And the possibility of reconciling work and family life above salary

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    The outbreak of the Coronavirus, now almost two years ago, forced companies to take action and allow, to the extent possible, employees to work remotely.Until then, the telecommuting system had only been established in large technology companies, such as Facebook or Apple, which before the health crisis allowed their staff to work remotely.But that was not the norm because the main workplace was still in the Silicon Valley, California offices.

    Telecommuting in 2022

    However, the long health crisis has perpetuated remote work over time. The appearance of new variants, such as delta and omicron, has caused a considerable increase in infections.This scenario has also forced companies to continue allowing remote work as a containment measure against the Coronavirus.

    “I think remote work is definitely here to stay. Not absolutely because we are going to see, more and more, hybrid models,”explained SilvinaMoschini, a well-known businesswoman and analyst who for many years has focused on the digital transformation of the world of work.

    In her opinion, the pandemic has shown that contrary to what was previously thought, “yes, you can do” the work remotely. This allows “many benefits” since workers can better reconcile their work and family life.

    The cons of remote working

    However, a study published in mid-October with a sample of 61,000 Microsoft employees found that the majority of respondents said that teleworking has impaired “communication.”Also the “collaboration” between work teams, which can end up affecting innovation in the long term.

    “If it is not intervened, the effects we discovered can affect the ability of workers to acquire and share new information between groups and, consequently, affect innovation,” the study authors pointed out in an article.

    “Companies should reflect on whether and how they decide to adopt work-from-home policies in the long term,” the analysts said in light of the results obtained in the study.

    The “great resignation”, another negative effect

    In addition, Moschini adds another point to the negative effects that telecommuting is having: Many employees are resigning if they are not allowed a much more flexible schedule that allows them to work from home.“We are seeing a forced adaptation in companies that are seeing how their employees plan to quit their job.

    “This when they are not allowed the flexibility to which they have become accustomed through more flexible work models,” said the expert, recalling that this phenomenon is already known in the United States as “the great resignation”.

    In fact, a study by human resources consultancy Randstad published a couple of weeks ago revealed that 67% of employees around the world are looking to make a change. This with the aim of achieving greater stability between work and family life.

    Higher priority to work-life balance than to salary

    The document indicates that 3 out of 4 American respondents (73%) believe that they should make changes to achieve a better balance between their personal and work life.

    In Argentina, which is one of the few Latin American countries analyzed in the study, something similar also happens. There 8 out of 10 Argentines want more flexibility at work.

    “They are prioritizing flexibility even over compensation or salary because they realized that it is possible that there are opportunities in companies that are much more avant-garde or innovative by having high-quality and well-compensated work to be able to work from the place or under good conditions. flexibility conditions”, she stressed.

    How will the future be?

    Along these lines, Moschini, who also directs the SheWorks company to empower the talent of women in digital companies in the United States and Latin America, stressed that 75% of the millennial population (born between 1981 and 1996) will not want to work in person in an office during a regular workday.

    “It is to adapt or the talent will not be available to companies that do not offer conditions that are not more attractive to people,” she added.At this point, many wonder who has to set the tone for teleworking to become definitively established.

    This once the coronavirus health crisis has been overcome. Will it be the companies? The employees? The governments? A hybrid?Moschini assures that “more than the companies and the employees or the government, it is the market as a whole.”

    “I think that a very important role in all this is played by start-ups (newly created companies) that, through the pandemic, were born one hundred percent remote or are now being developed with models that are basically distributed teams”, she exposed.

    The technology analyst consulted by the VOA highlights the work that large companies such as Uber, Airbnb or SpaceX have done “that opened the opportunity for people to work remotely.”

    Remote work and the limitation to hire foreigners

    But beyond all this, Moschini warns of the appearance of a “new wave of companies valued at more than $ 1 billion”, popularly known as Unicorn companies, “which are also the ones that are defining the economic model” at a general level.

    This change, she explains, is due to the fact that many companies, faced with the new paradigm – where face-to-face work is not required – are moving to other markets, also in Latin America.

    “Many of these moved from Silicon Valley because of the cost issue. But also because these companies, with these flexible models, can build talent structures without having geographic limits”, she says.That is, companies based on telecommuting can operate without legal limitations or immigration regulations when working.

    This is one of the biggest problems faced by many companies, for example in the United States, that want to hire foreign personnel but are limited by the long bureaucracy to obtain work visas.

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