Flexible Work Is Here to Stay

06/04/22< Back to news index

Before COVID-19, only 25% of workers worked from home, many infrequently. Remote work was done mostly by the highly-qualified, including trainers, or experts giving specialised advice or services. Now, over 60% of all workers do at least some remote work. This has some surprising results, according to recent studies.

More remote work is now available, and greater choice improves workers' job prospects. Experience of remote working helps confidence in tech and communication skills. Flexible working gives more control; you can work for a few hours, take the dog out, do your shopping, then come home and work again.

Remote workers also feel more creative and engaged in their work. It can be easier to work more efficiently without disturbance, including from supervisors and managers. Workers who spend less time and money commuting have more available for other pursuits. You can see why many don't want to return to the office or want to at least retain some remote options.

This is a challenge for employers. To recruit the best workers, you need to consider their needs, and these have changed. Since the pandemic, work has now blended with the rest of life more than we imagined it could, and workers feel more equal. Supporting these changes will be a valuable investment for the future.

It's not just COVID-19; technological advances are another factor. We can now work in comfort, how we like, and access necessary information including through smartphones, the cloud, and Zoom meetings. The more virtual a company becomes, the more profitable it is, and some are already operating through the cloud with remarkable success. Traditional companies, with high costs for staff and premises, may find they have trouble competing.

There will always be some companies with projects that require collaboration on a personal level, but they can still move to smaller premises. Most companies have potential to save around half their office costs. The social side of office work is important, but virtual communication can provide most workplace needs.

Now we are used to remote working, it makes sense to move on to the next stage. For many, especially in service industries, a further challenge is to broaden this, and include everyone. We all need to use our imagination and work to build on the positive aspects of these changes.

If you're thinking about downsizing, or making your working spaces more flexible, we can help.