What does the post-Covid workplace look like - and how can businesses thrive?

Posting date: 13 October 2020

In the US, 41% of the workforce is expected to continue working partly remotely beyond Covid-19, compared to the 30% prior to the outbreak. A similar trend is expected to sweep over the globe, meaning that in the post-Covid landscape companies that are ‘remote-friendly’ may gain a competitive edge. Though the damaging effects of coronavirus will be felt for some time, for some industries the pandemic is likened to a double-edged sword. So, can the post-Covid workplace be more productive and enable businesses to thrive?

 

When, where and how?

 The 9-5 working model was one greatly favoured by businesses around the globe, but with commuting times creeping up and taking precious time away from employees’ personal lives a gradual shift towards flexible working was forming even before the virus outbreak. Now, with 80% of employees stating they’ve enjoyed the transition to home working, it’s hard to imagine the age-old working pattern being put back into play.

 

In countries like Wales, the government is exploring new options where cities are no longer the hub of the working world. Instead, smaller co-working spaces will be set up in housing districts – thereby cutting pollution and improving the work-life balance while still creating that sense of community on a smaller scale. As companies strive to keep their culture alive and prioritise the employee work-life balance, new flexible working practices will begin to take root.

 

Similarly, technology has demonstrated its power to create new working practices and has shown business leaders that remote does not equal diminished collaboration. Within days, Zoom confidently replaced client meetings and over weeks conferences moved to the digital space too.


This is a cause for celebration for introverted employees but a challenge for companies to understand their teams’ behavioural drives and examine how to make remote-working work for everyone. As the employee tech stack continues to grow to include more collaboration tools such as Asana and Trello, so will the job opportunities for software developers.

 

The workplace culture

Workplace culture is key when securing top talent and promoting employee engagement, but the remote working model appears to pose a threat to carefully nurtured cultures. However, culture is intangible and a physical workspace is not essential to enforce company values and behaviours.

 

Covid-19 presents the opportunity to fortify culture. To do so leaders need to establish creative solutions that encourage autonomous working and actively engage the workforce, but a one-size-fits-all approach will not suffice. A McKinsey survey found a huge discrepancy amongst remote workers with children or dependents, with 63.2% of males and 38.5% of females revealing they are engaged with their work.

 

Technology will become cemented at the core of all businesses

2020 marked the fifth decade of the Information Age – a period which has seen technology play an increasingly important role in everyday life and business. No period has witnessed such rapid development, with technology transforming the way humans communicate, creating jobs that were unheard of a few years ago and improving the overall quality of life. While coronavirus was a threat to all this and more, it gave technology the platform to prove its value and has propelled the adoption of technology forward two years, paving the way for a more automated working world.

 

How businesses can thrive post-Covid

The ability to thrive hinges on adaptability. Businesses that hire individuals with this transferrable skill and back projects that are centred around this idea will likely survive the pandemic and flourish in the post-Covid world. Where Covid-19 initially forced industries into reactive decisions, now the stance will change to a proactive one. This has drawn out operational inefficiencies and demonstrated how the new world of working can be more productive than before.

 

One example of this is the life sciences industry. Globally, 826 companies have noted a disruption to clinical trials, of which over 50% are US-based and 3.7% located in Switzerland. The banning of nonessential appointments was a challenge for life sciences companies but the response was to take a new approach to study, investing more in digital technologies for remote appointments and using smartphone apps to improve patient care management.

 

Helping you hiring during uncertain times

Since 1999, we’ve been providing unmatchable talent acquisition solutions to Swiss companies and the international market. Hiring in these uncertain times calls for recruitment expertise and this is where Swisslinx can help. Learn about our client services, or if you’re looking for a job take a look at our financial services roles.

 

Get in touch to discuss your needs.

How to maintain company culture while working remotely

Remote working has become a way of life for many employees. Businesses throughout the world have to adapt and become more agile, with many taking on a hybrid work model. While there’s likely to still be organisations that want employees to get back into the offices permanently, there’s now a much greater demand for remote working and flexibility. There’s certainly a widespread acceptance that remote working is the future. And as organizations have taken to the post-pandemic world, maintaining company culture has become all the more important. Since employees don’t need to be physically in an office to work, companies will need to pay extra attention to their culture and ensure their teams are happy and fulfilled. Reinforce company values With remote teams, it’s even more important for managers and leaders to acknowledge the values of a company. This is particularly crucial when onboarding new hires remotely. For example, the way problems are solved within the business in a remote environment need to be reinforced to employees, as well as how core decisions will continue to be made. All of this should reflect aspects of the company culture. When leaders relay information about the company’s policies and practices, it reminds employees that culture and structure still exists. Due to remote working, the boundaries of culture can be difficult to define – so companies must focus on establishing expectations and promoting a strong work ethic to help maintain culture. Establish trust One of the best ways to maintain company culture while working remotely is to build trust and transparency throughout the organisation. Thanks to digital tools, it’s never been easier to stay connected with people and build relationships. With a remote team, managers need to show confidence in their team and maintain the trust that was built back in the office. For example, leaders and managers should be always open to collaboration and sharing solutions to problems. That way, everyone will feel connected and part of a team, which can remove any feelings of isolation that can come from working from home. Create a sense of accountability In the remote working world, it’s important to empower your team members to be proactive and take initiative. When managing a remote team, you need to avoid simply delegating tasks but instead create a workflow for your team that allows them to take a lead on projects. This creates an environment of accountability which helps maintain the culture you may have had back in the office. Personal responsibility is an important part of many businesses, so translating this into a remote environment is an excellent way of maintaining culture. Set new targets Companies must set all employees new objectives as priorities change. In a remote environment, there are likely to be some significant changes to company goals. Setting monthly and weekly targets is a great way to foster company-wide motivation and it creates a strong work ethic across teams. As in the office, employees will be driven to achieve company goals if they understand what they are. That’s why setting a vision for the work is essential and understanding how people are feeling with regards to meeting their targets in the new normal. Also, leaders should continually share what the company has achieved through communication tools, as well as business goals, all of which cultivate a sense of company culture. Swisslinx can drive your recruitment forward At Swisslinx, we have an excellent track record of providing the best recruitment solutions to companies in a range of sectors, from financial services and digital to healthcare and life sciences. As a leading recruitment agency in Swisslinx, we have access to an array of talent to help your business grow and develop. We pride ourselves on building effective relationships with clients and candidates. Contact us today if you would like to find out more about how we can help your recruitment. Also, please keep reading our insights page for more interesting articles.

READ MORE

Why internal mobility is crucial for engaging and retaining talent

Internal mobility is all about the movement of employees from one position to the next within an organisation. Now more than ever, businesses need to build a growth-oriented and flexible workforce to improve retention, leadership and engagement. Organisations in Switzerland today need to be open to new challenges and make sure their employees always have opportunities to take on new responsibilities and move up in the company. It’s no secret that employees who are happy and engaged will be more motivated to do their best work, so development opportunities should be taken seriously by all companies. Internal mobility is an effective way of filling skills gaps and delivering seamless talent acquisition – and it’s essential for the success of any organisation. Here’s why:   Nurture high-potentials   Internal mobility is hugely important when it comes to nurturing high-potential employees. Having an internal mobility strategy enables businesses to take advantage of the most promising talent and ensure they remain at the company. It’s widely understood that millennial workers change companies more frequently than older generations. That’s why taking an internal approach to moving employees to new roles and adding responsibilities shows you’re invested in the people that work within your company, which is key to retainment. When you identify and nurture the best talent in your organisation, you can create an agile workforce with a team of professionals with cross-functional knowledge and expertise.   Builds a culture of learning   One of the key benefits of focusing on internal mobility is that it builds a culture of continuous learning. First of all, it’s a change in mindset that asks leaders to support a culture of challenge and growth and encourages employees to plan for the next stage in their careers. A learning culture is crucial to securing employee productivity, engagement and enthusiasm. The best employees want to keep expanding their knowledge and learn new skills quickly for their professional development. An internal mobility program can pave the way for a strong learning culture, which can make a more adaptable organisation. In a learning culture, employees actively share each other knowledge, which means problems can get solved more quickly. In this way, employees will be more engaged and more likely to stay at the company for longer.    Business development    Without retaining employees and keeping them engaged, it’s difficult for a company to develop and drive internal growth. Organisations need to think strategically about why people join their companies and why they choose to stay. Often, it’s the work-life balance, culture and learning opportunities that make people enjoy their roles and feel valued. Internal mobility feeds into all areas of business development and growth. An internal mobility strategy can help companies find potential leaders who can empower their businesses in the future. Above all, companies should have an internal talent pipeline ready to fill new positions when needed. Hiring externally takes time and there’s always the risk of a candidate leaving the role prematurely. Therefore, investing in internal mobility is an effective way to empower your workforce, which in turn, can future-proof your business.   Swisslinx has the expertise to help your business grow   Swisslinx is a recruitment leader in a wide range of markets, including financial services, technology and healthcare and life sciences. Our team of dedicated consultants have years of experience in delivering quality recruitment expertise and sourcing the best candidates on both a permanent and contractual basis. We’ve established excellent consultative partnerships with our clients and candidates, and we pride ourselves on our quality service, built on insightful knowledge and experience. If you’d like to know more about our service, contact our team today.  

READ MORE