Business confidence went out the window in 2020. It hasn’t returned. Business owners don’t know how to plan. Employees want to know when or if they’ll return to the office. Few people have concrete answers. Enter Chris Herd. As the CEO and founder of a remote-focused company, Herd spent the past year talking to more than 2,000 companies about their plans. He shared what he learned on Twitter. We summed up the biggest takeaways and how you can use them to figure out what’s next for your business.
Want to Win? Give Workers Autonomy to Work Remotely
A staggering 90% of workforces Herd polled never want to return to a 9–5 in-person schedule. If you’re planning to return to the office full time, plan for your top talent to flee. 30% of companies are using cloud-based technologies to build a remote-first strategy. This number will rise as business leaders follow the lead of companies like Salesforce, which is giving workers autonomy over how and where they work.
Make remote work your hiring advantage
When you free your workers from a specific geographic location, you can bring the best candidates into a digital modern workplace. You can bet some of your competitors will be among those businesses that are expected to make this shift.
Stop spending $20,000 per worker every year on office space
It was wasted money before the pandemic and is an even greater financial drain now, because people don’t want to be at the office. Setting up an incredible work-from-home experience costs about $2,000 per worker annually. How would you rather spend your money?
Downsize, but don’t ditch your office
Organizations are choosing to shrink their physical footprint by 50%–70%. The smaller offices
- Save money
- Provide a place to hold meetings
- Give people a place to work from, as needed
In-Person Encounters Will Be More Meaningful – and Exotic
Daily business can be conducted on Microsoft Teams video calls, but some face-to-face meetings will continue. Businesses are looking for ways to make these encounters more meaningful and create environments that provide the best experience for participants. This could mean:
- A week-long retreat in a foreign country
- Resort-like office compounds
- Quarterly conferences and networking events
Don’t dismiss employee burnout
Before you think a meeting in Portugal or Lake Tahoe is frivolous, consider the biggest concern identified in the survey: employee burnout.
Your team has been running at a full sprint in their work and personal lives for over a year. They’re hunched over small laptops at their kitchen tables, incurring new back and neck injuries. Some feel out of sync with coworkers they can’t chat with in the hallway. A relaxing retreat – even on a smaller, in-country scale – lets them hit pause, reconnect with colleagues and return to work energized.
Better Communication Tools Are Key to Staying on Track
Your most successful employees will be the ones who excel at text-based business communication. Show your team how to write clear, actionable messages. Cut down on confusion by documenting how people should use different tools. Set out how and where people will get answers for questions – like email is for non-urgent needs; Microsoft Teams is for when you want immediate answers.
Do You Have Stitched-Together Systems or Sustainable Remote-Work Solutions?
Your employees like the flexibility remote work provides. They don’t want to be boxed into a traditional 9–5 or spend 2 hours commuting to the office. Don’t continue to rely on stitched-together systems for remote work. Set up lasting solutions to give your employees the supportive remote environment they deserve.
Nortec can help you with your current remote-work setup and identifying the actions you should take to make it more sustainable. Book a consultation now and harness the digital transformation as a competitive advantage.