WFH – Yes, It Could Be The New Normal

WFH – Yes, It Could Be The New Normal

The new hashtag that evolved recently and received the highest TRP during this pandemic is WFH, an acronym for “work from home” Which encapsulates every feeling and sentiment, positive and negative, for working remotely instead of from a desk at our workplace.

As organisations transitioned employees from the office to working from the safety of their homes due to the global Coronavirus pandemic, the system has matured as a business strategy over the past few months. With the discussion shifting, from “should we?” to “how should we?” and then to “But it’s a complex, long-term process”.

Its potential for unseen success as well as real failure has caused companies across the world significant setbacks. Companies that try to take the easy way out and rely solely on a simple ‘lift and shift’ approach, will significantly increase their acceptable risk, however, this model is still in its embryonic stages to be a tried, tested and effective strategy.

There are contradictory opinions on WFH, to begin with, the reduced and in some cases, a complete absence of productivity standards which can be extracted from the supervision of employees at the workplace cannot be ignored. Working at the place of employment fosters inventiveness and networking, some of these opportunities and their quality cannot be achieved nor replicated through a work from home environment.

WFH, on the other hand, not only reduces operational risk but also helps companies decongest large cities while helping open up opportunities to larger portions of the workforce in securing their livelihoods. The operating method of this model unavoidably and equally impacts the key members of the employee population along with their family but it certainly helps build social capital karma, healthy relationships and better team dynamics.

This revolution’s impact on the work sphere has required tremendous faith and support from every end to sail through the unchartered waters of this value chain and stay collaborated. While it is important to continue working from home until we see a medical breakthrough in the efforts to discover a vaccine, we must look at rebuilding social capital and continue WFH by reinventing professional etiquette to suit this set up due to its many advantages.

Advantages of WFH:

  • Customise your workspace to suit your schedule and approach
  • Save time and effort wasted on unnecessary interactions with colleagues and focus more on work
  • WFH requires more accountability translating to higher independence in performing tasks thus increasing overall productivity
  • Reduces instances of harassment due to office politics
  • Attain work-life balance from the time and energy saved from the efforts exerted from being physically present at a workplace
  • Get in touch anytime and anywhere due to the flexibility that comes with WFH setups

Disadvantages of WFH:

  • Employers may face issues in implementing their policies and security measures
  • Home-based setup costs – telecommunications, devices, software etc
  • Communication challenges – disturbances, unavailability, unprofessional settings for video conferences etc
  • Decreased staff morale in jobs that do not suit the WFH model
  • Promotions, employee engagement, rewards and recognitions may be delayed or entirely overlooked
  • Company’s developmental activities are sidelined
  • The monotony of being largely connected by work can be demotivating and damaging to team dynamics
  • WFH may not suit individuals who feel more energetic and focused at the workplace and may reduce their productivity

This pandemic has been heartbreaking yet an eyeopening tragedy. It has taken many of our age-old methods and hard-earned comforts but in those moments of deprivation it has also forced us to replace these outdated routines with more efficient and mindful systems and only time will tell us if WFH is one such replacement.

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