How COVID-19 Has Changed the Way we Work Forever

This time last year, no one could ever have imagined how within the course of just 12 months, the way we live our daily lives, and the way we work, would change so drastically.


But will the changes we have all adapted to remain temporary, or have things changed forever?


For businesses, remote working became the enabler for continuity. Virtual desktops, VPNs, video conferencing and cloud phone systems have all made it possible to provide a near-seamless service, whilst workforces stay safe and companies stay resilient. But is remote working set to take over for good? Or will it be a case of compromise and balance?


A number of multinational organisations have extended their work-from-home policies. Twitter and Facebook have allowed employees to go on working from home indefinitely, whilst Google, Amazon, Spotify and more have stretched their back-to-the-office dates into 2021.


The importance of working ‘together’


But whilst the pandemic has proved that remote working is perfectly viable, it is clear from many sources that there is a desire for a return to office life, albeit with a split between home and office working.


Author of office-themed books, Lucy Kellaway, believes in the importance of the office, saying that it helps maintain sanity amongst workers and provides a routine, also allowing them to be a different person, wearing different clothes and seeing different people between home and office.


Working alongside colleagues offers many benefits that video conferencing just can’t bring. Mentoring, training, creative inspiration and collaboration, a feeling of belonging; these are all productivity-boosting factors that come only with working together.


What are the working trends of the future?


Decentralisation of the office is a blossoming trend. The ‘hub and spoke’ model was already gaining traction even before the pandemic, but its popularity has accelerated as organisations realise the merits of blending in-person collaboration with home working, reducing overall time spent commuting, but strengthening company culture and relationships at the same time.


Stewart Butterfield, CEO and co-founder of Slack, sees the advantages in retaining the good parts of office life, whilst moving away from the inefficiencies that traditionally held back productivity. His company’s Future Forum research of 4,700 knowledge workers found the majority never want to go back to the old way of working. Only 12 per cent want to return to full-time office work, and 72 per cent want a hybrid remote-office model moving forward.


Eric S Yuan, founder and CEO of Zoom agrees. He says that now video communications are second nature, the way businesses and individuals communicate and connect will be forever changed. He says that in the near future, the hybrid work model will be adopted by some organisations, with a spread of working days across office and remote locations. Others though will stay completely remote, but both models will “enjoy increased productivity and deeper collaboration, and the ability to attract a more diverse workforce.”


Is remote working here to stay?


Whatever happens, it appears that remote working, in some form, is here to stay. The work life balance achieved even with a flexible, part-remote, part-office approach to working, has to be a good thing.


IT services for remote working are growing increasingly more sophisticated all the time.


Virtual desktops for example offer a secure way to work remotely and flexibly, as well as driving down overheads by cutting capital outlay and taking away costly hardware maintenance and upgrades.


Cloud VoIP phone systems support remote and flexible working in a big way too, and have the potential to significantly cut communication costs. This is especially the case for businesses adopting the hub and spoke office setup model, because calls between satellite offices are cost-free. What’s more, unified communications are at the heart of cloud telecoms, providing the opportunity to centrally manage everything from calls and voice messages to emails, SMS, faxes, live chat and video conferencing. In other words, the entire communications package for the company that needs to work flexibly.


Future-Proof Flexible working IT solutions from PC Docs


At PC Docs, we offer a variety of remote working IT solutions, all designed to provide businesses with the ability to work flexibly, in whatever way they choose.


Why not get in touch today to discover more about the remote IT services London businesses have been switching to in order to keep their operations flowing during the pandemic? Our experts are ready to create a remote working solution for you that fits with your individual requirements.

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