The sudden shift to remote working which the pandemic brought on was one of the largest shakeups on employment since the wide-scale adoption of the casual freelance job market, like ride sharing apps or the food delivery services, nicknamed ‘The Gig Economy’. Businesses had to adapt and learn how to operate in an entirely new way. This sudden shift has accelerated what many in the industry have been calling for years. Certain roles can thrive under remote-working conditions, with the benefit of increased productivity, lower overhead costs and higher employee satisfaction. Albeit some roles are not suited for this type of work, as the world evolves and the way the work evolves alongside it. One of the lesser-discussed benefits of this shift towards remote-working, however, is the expanded pool of candidates allowing for a more diverse range of thought throughout the company. The removal of the geographical restrictions work used to have can allow you to find the best candidates around the country, or even around the world. This article will dive into the boom that is regionless employment and how it will grow businesses for the better.
Pre-pandemic, the standard way of operation was for most office-based jobs to be required to be doing their work from within the office. Admittedly, some workplaces were offering and expanding into this before, but the large majority operated on the old-fashioned practice. Hesitancy was brought on through the unsurety over the effect on productivity, with many businesses not wanting to take the risk. Another hesitancy which many businesses faced was the limitedly used or known remote technologies. Without much urgent need for these types of systems, developments and innovation in the area was slow. This changed with the lockdowns, however the sudden necessity to move to a new method of operating spurred on the development of higher quality, affordable remote technology.
However, remote working isn’t for everyone. For a multitude of reasons, certain individuals might not prefer working within the home environment and enjoy a much more productive and happy environment to work. This article isn’t to argue for the abolishment of office-based working, but to advocate for it to be an option as standard, so employees can work in a way which suits them, and their business, best.
Now all these measures have been developed and implemented by businesses around the world, the question is now how to progress with all this expanded connectivity.
Roles benefiting from this change
As mentioned above, many industries can actually benefit from transitioning over to a more flexible work from home policy. This can include customer service roles, where the necessity to be in the office has been drastically reduced with the rollout of fiber-optic broadband as more and more tasks can be completed at home. The majority of organisations which have a customer service department already use some form of a digital ticketing system. This would allow for the easy transition to allow it to service the employees who are remote working and enable them to perform the same workflow remotely.
This option to move the customer service roles remote could help alleviate the stress situation faced in those roles. With the ability to balance work-life around home life, avoiding the unnecessary commute could lead to an overall improvement in worker productivity and satisfaction.
As the pandemic has started an evolution of the employment market, finding the correct people to fill a business’ role has become easier through the adoption of remote working. Not only do you get the benefit of opening up the applicant pool to other possible employees who wouldn’t need to make a long commute, but it could also allow a business to hire international staff to be able to offer time-zone and language appropriate support for new expanding markets.
The Data Entry role has very similar benefits to the Customer Service role above. However, I believe this role has a unique area which makes it prime for growth in the sector. As the value of data grows the amount of roles needed to handle, process, and enter it will increase. These types of skills will vary from those with the tenacity to enter data quickly and accurately, to more programming focussed employees who work on the processing and handling of that data.
The expanded geographical area in which you could hire employees from can allow this industry, and the advancements it creates, to expand into new areas. Due to the standard language for programming and data science being in English, this opens the door for international employees to be hired to remotely work together with a team to fulfil the role.
As discussed in our previous articles here at NetworthPick, the world of counselling and mental health support has seen some growth and evolution in new ways of delivering the services since the pandemic. This has caused an acceleration towards the offering of online counselling sessions.
Depending on the individual, the ability to talk to a professional and receive mental health support from the comfort of your own home could lead to a more conducive environment to receive support. Whilst others might still prefer the in-person sessions, having the option can only benefit those seeking support.
This growth has caused an outcry for trained counsellors with them now being able to offer their support nationwide and can hopefully lead to better mental health support for everyone.
Another area of growth that will benefit from the adoption of a remote-working policy is that of education. As the pandemic forced a lot of people to spend a lot more time at home it caused a boom of people searching out online courses. This helped prove that if you put education out there for people at the time to pursue it, everyone ends up better off.
The ability for individuals to get teaching jobs offering their courses online for students through video calls or through the production of courses in which students can work through in their own time. The move away from more ‘traditional’ institutions when it comes to education could lead to a more affordable selection available to everyone.
When examining the benefits of a new system of working it’s also worth looking at the advantages for the employees and what it can enable them to achieve. By removing the necessity of commuting into the office, you can open up the roles to those with disabilities. This could allow the individual to have a healthy work / life balance with the ability to work within their preferred environment.
The shift to remote working can also benefit parents. In the past for families in which both parents are working, the services of childminders were used to bridge the time after the school finishes until one of the parents finishes to take their child home. With an adoption of this, it can allow parents to be able to be at home and keep an eye on their children whilst also focusing on their work. The ability to have this easier balance for some employees will only lead to better results as they are happier in their work.
As we live through these evolving times it can be important to take stock and understand if we are holding onto old ideas of work, delaying the progression we are witnessing. As with any large shakeup of the way we work and live, there will always be opposition. Outdated notions on the benefit of constant in-person contact being challenged in every discussion.
Just as the textile and mill workers after the industrial revolution, certain jobs become less viable and needed as the technology advances to a point to start assisting and replacing the role. We are witnessing similar opposition to when those changes started coming in.
As we come out the other side of this pandemic, it should be the ideal time to take a long hard look at all the jobs and roles we have in this world and have a think about which roles are unnecessary or less relevant as we are entering this post-pandemic world. Skills can be universal and transferable between many disciplines and industries and, with the right investment in education and training, we can embrace the regionless employment which working from home can deliver.
These remote roles might not be for everyone, but having the option should be the default as standard would put the choice and power back into the hands of the employees to be able to set up and work in a way which is conducive to better productivity.
Nathaniel is a Web Design Executive who also writes content on technology and loves spending his days researching and building new projects, and generally complaining about new trends.