The coronavirus pandemic abruptly forced most companies to switch to a work-from-home model. Now, as stay-at-home restrictions ease many of those companies are re-evaluating the whole concept of "the office." Facebook recently told employees they can continue to work from home for the rest of the year if they want, while Twitter went further and notified most employees they could work from home indefinitely. Other companies are already planning or considering reducing office space to save money and improve efficiency.
Dr. Joel Small, professional workplace coach and co-founder of Line of Sight Coaching, believes this will become the new normal for many. "Some companies lend themselves to remote working, some don't, but those that do will definitely consider reducing their footprint, because it makes them more resilient when times like this occur," he tells KTRH.
A lot of companies have also found employees taking to the change. "Those who've become proficient at home work have really done a pretty good job of it," says Dr. Small. "And statistics are showing that they are equally, if not more productive at home than they are in-house (in the office)."
Still, a lot of people are not thrilled with the idea of working from home, especially indefinitely. "Some at-home workers are concerned they'll be passed up for promotions and so forth, because they're not there everyday face to face with the people who make those decisions," says Dr. Small.
Looking to the post-coronavirus world, there are tough decisions ahead for companies that want to increase efficiency while also keeping their workforce happy and productive. "It's kind of like a war right now for these company leaders," says Dr. Small. "They're having to defeat the enemy while maintaining the morale of the troops."