Work at the office vs working at home: what is more productive?

There is no doubt that majority companies are confused by both situations when it comes to bringing their remote workers back to the office. (Representative image)

Par Yogita Tulsiani

Companies are analyzing the pros and cons of getting their people back to work now that the market has started to rebound. On the one hand, they are concerned about the health of employees and continue to put in place remote work restrictions in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the workplace. Organizations, on the other hand, focus on what is best for their business and the ideal method for implementing a hybrid business model.

There is no doubt that majority companies are confused by both situations when it comes to bringing their remote workers back to the office. Companies embrace the concept of freedom, but many are unsure whether or not to allow employees to choose when, how and where to work. As a result, talent management teams bring remote workers back to the office, which is beneficial for all parties.

High levels of health security
According to various market surveys, if given the opportunity during the COVID-19 outbreak, employees would prefer to work from home even after the crisis has passed. Employees are reluctant to leave their homes to work. Companies have strict workplace safety measures in place to make them feel safe and comfortable.

Health screening methods are implemented by companies that care about the health of their employees. Temperature controls are required and contactless technologies are installed to reduce the risk of transmission. Apart from that, physical separations such as workstation space and rotating shifts play a role.

Deepens connections
Having employees in the office is beneficial for forming deeper bonds by interacting face to face. This translates into building trust and bonding with the team. As a result, it fosters innovation and productivity which contributes to business growth and scalability. In addition, focusing on team building activities renews bonds between employees.

On top of that, companies are planning virtual games and activities that employees can participate in, work together, and build better relationships at work. Companies plan regular team lunches, happy hours, and other activities to engage employees in fun activities. Additionally, returning employees can take advantage of organized re-qualification programs to accelerate their careers.

Enable clear communication
Despite the fact that companies have adopted advanced digital tools to keep remote working fluid and easy, they still manage to establish clear communication. During the remote working period, communication in the workplace progressed dynamically. There is no doubt that the use of technology today has set new standards of communication. Therefore, returning to the office will require a strategic plan for the employees.

Site communication structures communication protocols in the workplace. It helps employees develop a better understanding of roles than offsite communication. This will help to create a deep bond and culture in the workplace. Apart from this, communicating employees in offices can lead to innovative ideas that are less likely to happen through email or video conferencing.

Flexibility in the workplace
There is no doubt that returning to the office after a long period of flexibility can be overwhelming for employees. The majority of companies take a phased transition approach to make it comfortable for employees. On the other hand, employees are concerned about the number of fixed working hours each week. To address this concern, companies allow their staff to determine their own working hours and prioritize their mandatory meetings and office attendance. Additionally, companies are rethinking their leave policies for employees even with mild colds to avoid infecting others in the workplace.

In summary
Working from home has its own advantages, including flexibility for employees and reduced operating costs for employers. However, working from home comes with many distractions. Returning to the office facilitates the streamlining of communications, work and the development of innovative ideas. Additionally, employees are expected to remain functional and aligned with company goals.

(The author is the Managing Director and Co-Founder, iXceed Solutions (Global Tech-Recruiter Provider). Opinions expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of Financial Express Online.)

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