Just a few short years ago, working from home seemed to be the solution to finding the perfect work-life balance. Fast forward to 2021 and a large percentage of the working population are jaded by the reality of working from home. But then we have had a global pandemic to navigate. Companies suddenly started moving to remote working.
The ‘work from home’ notion was never meant to be used as a tool to keep us safe during such unprecedented times. The very idea of working from home conjured up the perfect solution to what we all wanted - freedom and choice. To work in a way that worked for us.
However, as we learnt during the pandemic, working from home was a far cry from the ideal solution, especially for those who were having to juggle working with homeschooling, and sharing a makeshift workspace with their partner or housemates. It certainly wasn’t the picture-perfect scenario we’ve all been dreaming of.
Working from home then evolved into remote working, or working from anywhere. Again, an ideology that led us to believe that being able to work from anywhere would be the exact tonic we were looking for. Working from anywhere offers freedom and expansion and sounds idyllic in terms of choosing the environment that best suits you - whether that’s in a cafe, a hotel or on a beach in Bali.
Bliss... Or is it?
Surely working from anywhere still comes with the same disadvantages of working from home, you’re simply choosing a different location to set up camp and get to work?
Feelings of isolation and loneliness will still be felt, regardless of whether you’re remote working at the kitchen table or in the First Class Lounge at the airport. Then of course there are the disadvantages of being disconnected from your colleagues or the fear of missing out or feeling like you’re not pulling your weight because you’re not physically working alongside your teammates.
Perhaps the idea of working from home and remote working are just that - ideas. Perhaps it’s not about where you’re working from, but how you’re connecting, communicating and collaborating.
“The future of work at Google is flexibility. Many of us would also enjoy the flexibility of working from home a couple of days a week, spending time in another city for part of the year, or even working there permanently. Google’s future workplace will have room for all these possibilities.”
CEO Sundar Pichai
Unsurprisingly, Forbes was reporting on hybrid working back in September 2020, with contributor Grant Powell discussing whether or not the office is dead, or if it has simply evolved.
The strong points he makes, and one we can’t overlook, is that people working together in the same room tend to solve problems more quickly than a remote workforce, which can become a sticking point when running a company efficiently.
Technology has undoubtedly played an influential role in keeping businesses afloat during the pandemic. If it wasn’t for the development of software companies such as Zoom, Google Hangout and Microsoft Teams, we’d be screwed.
But these applications cannot replicate an office environment, online. They’re fantastic at connecting people at the moment, while a call is in progress, but after that? Back to relying on email, phone calls or the odd message on What’s App.
So, what can we be doing to keep businesses running as a business, without physically being in the same building?
How do managers keep morale high?
How do a company culture and work ethic translate online?
How do HR managers and CEOs ensure that they’re nurturing the mental health of their employees, to keep workflow flowing?
At Wurkr, we are providing a solution to these very real problems. Wurkr isn’t just another platform that enables you to join in conversations and check in on colleagues in remote working, it’s a SaaS platform that enables teams to integrate and innovate. It recreates an in-office experience, online. So when you clock in in the morning, you can see who else is in the office. Need to speak to Colin in accounts? You can walk across the hallway, knock on his door and walk right in. Need to arrange a meeting with key external suppliers? No worries, the boardroom can be set up for you. Fancy a quick chat with Kathy in the kitchen? No worries, just keep an eye on her movements, or drop her a quick message via the direct messaging option.
The world is moving at such a fast pace that it’s vital for businesses and organisations to do the best that they can to create an integrated and inclusive workforce, whether they’re physically working in the building, or logging in from that beach in Bali. The technology developed by Wurkr makes this happen.
Remote working isn’t technically dead, but it’s certainly evolved beyond all recognition so that no colleague feels remote, everyone feels engaged and part of a team with a much bigger mission.