The way in which many Americans work changed drastically and abruptly this past spring. Companies made dramatic shifts to create a last-minute remote workforce that could weather the pandemic storm. Now, as we are deep into Q4, the prospects of a return to normal by 2021 seem confusing at best. Over the past several months, many organizations have adapted easily to virtual meetings and off-site staff, while others have struggled with creating a cohesive environment that fosters success.
The Talener team works closely with startups, multi-nationals, and everything in between. And while some companies have been quick to embrace the work from home forever model, others are still scratching their heads at what the future will bring.
Remote work is not uncommon for many software engineers. But there are many people who did not work remotely prior to the pandemic, who now find themselves in this position. We were curious to understand what their company’s plans were over the next several months.
We asked our technology talent community on LinkedIn (who were not working remotely prior to the pandemic) to tell us what is happening next. The community responded and gave us important insight into how their jobs will change as we finish out the year.
It is unsurprising that organizations are split across the board. There is no right answer to the question, and many factors could be out of their control – travel restrictions, capacity limits, local ordinances, or office / workstation setup. Looking at these results opens our eyes to the clear uncertainty that plagues us as a country and as business leaders.
For some, permanent remote work might be the answer to getting out of pricey office leases. While others may struggle with teams who work better in the same space and need to collaborate to be effective. Additionally, this data also tells us that many organizations may need to be flexible to remote options as they hire new talent. This requires a shift in sourcing, interviewing, onboarding, and integrating new team members.
As a technology staffing firm, this info helps us to decide how we will deal with the situation as well. Traditionally, staffing is a relationship-based business where in-person meetings and interviews are the core to building strong foundations with clients and candidates. Talener has learned to adapt over the past several months through remote work and the gradual return of team members to the office. Giving employees the option to use the office (safely) has been a great way to boost morale, take advantage of each other’s expertise, and collaborate more fluidly. It is an opportunity to take advantage of the energy that a traditional office setting can facilitate.
But this gradual shift back to the office may not be in the cards for everyone. Talener’s CEO Michael Dsupin says, “Regardless of a company’s desire to return to a physical space or not, I hope that leaders will acknowledge the real fears that may exist within their staff and take that into consideration when trying to reset policies.” He continues, “Likewise, I hope that our own teammates will be courteous and mindful of the public health crisis by taking the necessary steps not to expose their co-workers to the virus.”
Talener’s experience is not unlike many other organizations. It is imperative that your organization take the time to make policies clear- yet allow for flexibility as circumstances change every day. Setting expectations among staff and new hires will avoid confusion, resentment, and staff turnover.
If your organization is unsure how to address the remote work situation and you are looking for more insight into what is happening in your industry, reach out to the Talener team for help. We can guide you as you make decisions, provide examples of other organizations’ set ups, and give you guidance on bringing in new hires.