In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, employers around the country quickly moved as many employees to working from home as feasible. In many cases, both employers and employees are seeing that it works, and many employees prefer it.
According to a recent survey from The Grossman Group, 48 percent of employees currently working from home would like to continue. What’s more, the opportunity to work from home has favorably impacted employee’s perception of their employer. For example, 88 percent stated that their satisfaction with their employer increased or stayed the same, and 78 percent believe their company leadership has lived up to the values of their organization during the pandemic.
The National Bureau for Economic Research estimates 37 percent of all jobs can plausibly be performed from home. The pandemic is forcing employers to reconsider what the workplace will look like as we shift to the new normal. Here are some things to consider about making working from home a long term arrangement:
- Consider what jobs can continue to be effectively performed from home. What jobs primarily require direct supervision? Are there some that allow for partial work from home?
- Have a telework policy in place with things like maintaining the confidentiality of company information, limiting personal use of company equipment, and procedures relating to recording and submitting work hours. Be sure to include a statement that employment is at will.
- Ask about your employees’ preferences. Some may work best with regular face-to-face interaction while others are most productive working off-site. For many, a combination may work well.
- Be sure managers are well prepared to supervise remote workers, so they don’t fall into the traps of micromanaging or, at the other end of the spectrum, adopting an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality.
- Encourage employees to unplug at the end of the workday to avoid burnout.
Employers Council can help; please contact us with questions.