HR departments are working to come up with more robust remote work frameworks and guidelines which include working remotely fulltime, working remotely “as needed” or a hybrid plan. Below are some trends to consider:
Smart or agile working – Being agile is when a worker can control their own time and decide where and when to work. This allows them to balance what is most important to them in order to achieve strong performance results. This also means that:
- Companies may rearrange their office workspaces to include areas that will accommodate workers as they “come and go” based on their need to have an alternate place to work, meet with teams or simply feel the need to have a face-to face with colleagues or clients.
- Hours will continually flex, taking into consideration the work that needs to be accomplished, communication with colleagues and clients that needs to occur and the personal responsibilities that need to be met.
- Companies will invest in technology that supports 24/7 communication and collaboration and provide secure access to information, clients, and colleagues from anywhere at any time.
Increased focus on work versus having a job – The trend for workers to forgo the traditional full-time job in favour of freelance, gig, or contractor work is growing. The view is that a person can get full-time “work” without having to have a “job”. This gives them more control over how much work they want to do.
Contractors and consultants from around the world can bid for work online and then be paid for the results that they deliver, creating a just-in-time model of getting work done.
The part-timer – Traditionally, part-time was an arrangement restricted to lower skilled roles. There are increasingly more executives and senior level professionals that are working a reduced schedule and demonstrating they can still effectively contribute to the business. The increasing age of the baby boomer generation is also driving up the demand across all industries for more part-time opportunities. People are healthier and living longer, so to remain active and challenged and to meet continuing financial responsibilities, some older workers are choosing to work in a capacity that allows them to engage in a semi-retirement lifestyle.
Rewarding results versus efforts – Traditionally, work was a place an employee went for a specific amount of time and was paid a salary in exchange for that time. The reward was for the number of hours worked, whether those hours were productive or not.
Now, technology provides the ability for the employee to have more choice around where and when to work. A shift is happening from “work” being a place to go, to “work” meaning the completion of activities that have a purpose for the business. It is a process for achieving results where the outcomes matter and become the measure for rewards and recognition.