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Managing A Newly Remote Workforce

Thursday, May 28, 2020 11:25 AM | Denise Downing (Administrator)

Submitted by Access Capital

It’s no secret that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has created a huge shift in our lifestyles. Most notably, working from home has become the norm for many people. The idea of working remotely is hardly new. In fact, according to data from FlexJobs, the past five years have seen a growth in remote work of 44% prior to COVID-19. According to a report by Slack, a provider of remote workforce communication platforms, as of March 27, the estimated number of knowledge workers working remotely reached 16 million.

The current state of affairs has led us to hear new phrases repeatedly such as “these unprecedented times” and my personal favorite, “the great work-from-home experiment.” The latter clearly alludes to the massive shift organizations had to make in record time to enable their employees to perform their duties safely from their homes so as to comply with stay at home orders put in place to quell the spread of the Coronavirus. As a result, many employees are experiencing the work-from-home lifestyle for the first time.

So, what seems to be the consensus among the workforce that doesn’t leave home? According to a survey from IBM, of 25,000 adults surveyed, 54% would prefer to continue to primarily work from home in a post COVID-19 world. The report also showed that 40% of those surveyed strongly felt their employer should provide opt-in remote work options in the future.

Based on the data, it seems that people are enjoying and even prefer the remote working environment. It’s understandable, considering some factors attributed to working in an office including time lost in commutes and less time spent with family. People are realizing that they can perhaps be more productive when they are tackling work from their homes and are working longer than their in-house counterparts.

How can you enable your staffing business to continue to thrive with a home-based workforce? A big way to empower your talent to work well remotely is via communication. Be it with your recruiters, candidates or clients, the staffing business relies on the art of ongoing clear and successful communication. From the time your recruiter interviews a candidate to day one of an assignment and beyond, proper and continuous communication is employed and its relevance is elevated in the world of virtual work. Now is the time to leverage your previous investments in new technology such as video conferencing platforms and employee collaboration tools to work harder for you in this new age. There are plenty of ways to talk to your team and your candidates without having to be in the same room.

With the advent of COVID-19 and the emergence of a fully remote workforce, there will inevitably be those candidates unfamiliar with not working onsite. Here is where your seasoned remote candidates will be your best asset. Connect your new talent with those employees who are experienced and have successfully performed assignments from home so any questions can be answered by someone who has been in the trenches.

Your greener candidates will have the opportunity to get informed and prepare themselves for their remote assignments and most importantly, impress your clients.

Embracing the new landscape might be challenging for some. After all, up until recently, the traditional workplace for most employees has rarely been the home. The growth of a remote workforce, while unchartered territory for some, actually presents an opportunity for staffing companies since finding and placing talent is now no longer limited by geography.

Staffing company owners are known for their ability to adapt and with the help of certain tools and practices, you will undoubtedly thrive when placing a home-based workforce.

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