The world has changed in the face of the COVID19 pandemic and employees are quickly adapting to the new normal, working remotely.
With employees required to work from home, businesses are figuring out how to remain fully operational in wholly digital mode.
Remote working specialists have always said that the key to working from home is clear communication; both from vertically – i.e. managers to their teams and laterally, people working across teams. Modern workforce communications and teaming tools such as Microsoft Teams, Skype, Slack or similar have suddenly become even more important than ever.
In such a dynamic environment, listening to employees is also more critical. An annual engagement survey is not fit for purpose when the situation is changing by the day. Nor is a quarterly pulse survey – 12 weeks between dips is an eternity in the current environment. We’ve seen people experiencing high levels of anxiety and worries that are particularly worrying when they are working in isolation. This situation is where always on, always responsive employee listening comes into its own.
At the Evolved Group we’ve been championing always-open conversational engagement with workforces for some time. This is the basis of our PeopleListening workplace engagement system. It uses natural language conversations and workplace companions which keep the finger on the pulse to track the sentiment of people at work. A workplace companion that talks to all your disparate team members, providing real-time insights to leadership, picking up all the key themes and issues, including stress levels and pandemic-specific intelligence.
From the feedback we’re seeing coming through and from first-hand experience with our own relatively large dispersed team, working from home at scale is proving it can actually be quite beneficial. This may be telecommunicating’s moment when it is no longer consider akin to flying cars and holidays on the moon. Employees are learning to run their work from home days like an ordinary working day, with a clear routine. Employees find they might have a couple more hours a day due to the lack of travel, this adds up over the course of a month or even a year to create significant productivity uplifts.
Every cloud has a silver lining. Perhaps this once in a lifetime health event creates a once in a lifetime workplace shift too…