There is a lot to think about in the article below, things that many companies are still trying to figure out, because the changes we’ve made over the last few months when it comes to where work gets done, are not going away any time soon.
“The tools offices provide natively, the utilities and services and yes, perks, that make working both an effective and human experience, cannot be the sole province of your employees just because the office has moved to the home. Unequal access to dedicated workspaces and better technology will undoubtedly affect work performance. What happens when some of your employees are able to reduce their distractions with dedicated home offices, better tech, daycare, and cleaning services, while others simply can’t afford to do the same? What new costs do you expect employees to foot that didn’t exist prior to the pandemic? It’s time to start asking these hard questions because they are going to be critical from now on, and the companies that thrive will be those that take advantage of the money saved by leaving their office rentals to support their team members. “
This is, naturally, one area that we maybe haven’t given much thought to, but we should. We sort of rushed into working from home without much thought about what that looks like for everyone. For example, I worked from home even before the pandemic, so I had a separate office space and was used to paying for internet access, and even some of my own supplies. When my wife got sent to work from home, we had to find her a separate office space, and create an environment for her to work in all at once. We could do that, having a guest room, and some extra equipment from my office, but I fully realize that makes us unusual. For a lot of workers, this is all new, and we can see on all of our Zoom and Teams calls that many of our colleagues are working from their living room, around their family, or from their small apartments, and it looks very different. I’m sure it feels very different. What should organizations that are going to be downsizing their office space be providing for their people for them to productively work from home?
More importantly, what will they need to start providing to compete for top end talent once those at-home perks become the norm for that industry? Don’t think they can just downsize all of the office expenses and pocket that cash. Workers will be taking on some of that expense for themselves now, and will be watching how employers handle the transition, as well as how their competitors handle it.