Ever since the breakout of the Pandemic, the work culture has changed drastically in a way that no one could imagine. Every companies have remodelled their organisational structure, workflow, reporting system, Human Resource management and so on. Of which, the work from home and its Pros and Cons is something which I try to discuss in this blog.
When the pandemic broke out for the first time in early 2020, people were not sure about the jobs. Everyone started thinking if they are not able to go to their workspaces or Offices, they are not going to be paid. Lucky were those who could use their computers to get the work done, no need to mention that software developers and other resources working in the same industry is the one who were looking at this option primarily. Multi national companies were already having the infrastructure to allow the employees to work remotely and many were using this flexibility provided by their employers. But mid level companies were staring at a considerable loss of their productivity.
With the ever increasing number of covid infections, companies were left with no option but to let every employees to work from home. The managers were given the task to make sure that the software developers are utilised to the maximum and productivity is not affected. But the biggest challenge was to provide with the laptop required for these workforce to work remotely. Companies were delivering the desktop computers to employees' home because of this challenge. People have converted their guest rooms, bedrooms, hallways, kitchens, dining tables to office spaces since no one have ever thought of the need to have office inside the home. So many have lost their jobs and companies were struggling to get the projects from the West. Europe and US were investing all their funds to get the PPE kits, sanitisers and masks. Everyone were looking at the future with doubt.
The new Normal
Months passed and everyone realised the pandemic is here to stay for Years and accepted the reality that they are not going back to their offices soon. People have started enjoying the time at their home, with their kids and families. They could hear voices of birds and animals which otherwise have not been heard in the daily routine especially in urban areas. Some realised even the clouds seen from their home are also blue. The plants started having new leaves may be because of the fact they had to filter less carbon dioxide. Groceries were delivered to their doorsteps and so many have experienced curfews and bans for the first time in life. Things that were taken for granted have become luxury now.
Can things go back?
The first wave is completed and vaccines are on their way to get the approval from government agencies and regulators. People have become less scared of Covid. India is expected to play an important role in this considering its massive manufacturing capacity of vaccines on a daily basis. By now, companies have started getting the projects and it is increasing exponentially since every one is used to the virtual solutions thus causing a huge demand for such solutions and software can only make that happen. So Companies have started thinking about calling back the employees to offices and recruit for those who were fired before. Then came the turning point!!! No one wants to come back. No, things cannot go back to where it was. New recruits were demanding WFH with their new potential employers. Companies were thinking whether to approve or not. But some have already decided that they should be allowed to work from home for couple of years. Some have used it as a differentiating factor to attract new joiners. And thus a new work culture was being developed and things will never go back to how it was!
Is this new work culture good or bad ?
This is bad and good. Sitting in home for long hours with the work and office calls can put your relations with spouse, kid, parents at strain. You can't enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee with your loved ones even if you are at home. Many don't have a proper office set up at their homes and it can seriously affect the backbone and thus causing severe back injuries. You tend to get weak in social communication skills since you will be mostly at the home and you don't interact with a tea shop guy or a taxi driver or a bus driver or a co-passenger that you meet every day on your way to work and back. Most scary part is there is NO Home Sweet Home. when you can't differentiate home and office, where is that Sweet Home that you want to spend time after office? Is it totally bad? No, you get to be near the family and kids will get to see their patents more. If you are good at managing your time and work, you will be able to enjoy the sunset from the balcony of your home. So what is the best way forward. A hybrid model is the best solution which balances the cons and enhances the Pros!!
Women have always been oppressed in a male dominated world. When they were travelling to work place, their interactions with people was a way of liberation for many and it opened a new world to them interns of exposure to many and new things. It was a process in making in a country like India where women could come forward in society and contribute to the nation building. Full time Work From Home has disrupted that and I am not sure if it is helping in the empowerment of women.