13% Increase in Employee Productivity through WFH: Time to reconsider our working style?
Blog: NASSCOM Official Blog
– By Mr. Vikram Kumar, Co-Founder and Managing Director, SRV Media Pvt. Ltd.
With COVID-19 having thrown the world into a tizzy, there have been upheavals and changes in the working environment across the world. From being used to meeting colleagues and spending time over lunch and meetings, employees have now shifted to working remotely from the comfort of their homes. Brainstorming sessions that used to involve white-boards and markers now require a fast wifi and a good camera. Tea breaks with colleagues have now converted to tea breaks alone or with family. The world has upended and how!
But how comfortable is it?
How has this affected productivity?
Are employers providing the right facilities to their employees?
Do people work less from their couch or do they work overtime with no boundaries?
There are many such questions that arise as we navigate the uncharted territory we are in. Contrary to popular opinion, work from home has actually aided the productivity of workers by 13% and improved output. Many employers have found that people are able to complete more work in less time.
While there are many who feel like they are ‘living in office’ and working overtime, there is a large percentage of people who feel that work-from-home gives them the space and time to think deeply and more creatively. The need to draw boundaries and take time off has become more pronounced, however people are appreciative of that time moving far away from screens to spend quality time with loved ones.
As the world goes through one of the toughest times, employees have found comfort and balance at home. With the commute time written off completely, employees have more time for self-development and upskilling as well. Those who found it hard to take up a hobby earlier now have the time to experiment in the kitchen, paint, take up a class, etc. This has led to many people ending the day feeling much more accomplished as well.
Another area that has seen a major improvement is personal fitness. With just enough time to cook, clean and get ready for work, fitness always took a backseat. Long commutes and heavy traffic led to tired minds and bodies, with people skidding into work and leaving late at night. Now, there is extra time on their hands allowing them to take up different activities like walking, running, kickboxing, yoga, cycling, etc. Better physical health always leads to an energized body and refreshed mind.
This has also got company owners thinking about the efficiency of work-from-home, encouraging them to implement this in the long-term as well. Apart from saving massively on infrastructure costs, it has removed all boundaries allowing employers to hire global talent.
Some of the head honchos of the biggest conglomerates like Mondelez, ITC, TCS, etc., have shared that they will have to rethink and re-analyse their working styles. Most of the big firms do not want to go back to the old format and plan to have an office only for those jobs that require it. Many industries like IT, design, digital marketing, PR, advertising, auditing, data analytics, etc., allow for increased productivity through remote work.
At the same time, it is important to consider that there are some industries like agriculture, hospitality, commodities, warehousing, etc., that cannot function on the work-from-home model.
All in all, one of the biggest positives of the pandemic has been that it has gotten each one of us to reflect, re-evaluate and restructure our everyday working style. It has instilled responsibility and taught us to be more productive and achieve more everyday. As we hope to get back to the post-COVID world soon, it is important that we take these learnings ahead.