Lets’ face it! The Covid-19 pandemic is here and it has come to stay so far. There is not much we can do about the pandemic yet, but in return, we can adapt to it and learn from the new initiatives that were necessary due to the virus.
A lot of businesses have struggled to face the major challenges that the pandemic has brought. However, many companies are admittedly recovering from the crisis, so now it’s time to look forward and take a look at what we learned during the crisis and how we can use these learning’s in our companies.
Learnings and practices that will remain beyond the pandemic
A Cisco report, tilted A New Perspective in the Modern Workplace identified six key business lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic based on a survey with 100 senior IT professionals.
The unexpected Covid-19 caused businesses to make critical decisions never before faced, resulting in learnings and practices that will remain well beyond the pandemic.
The 6 business lessons we learned as a result of Covid-19:
Lesson 1: What business agility really means
The Covid-19 pandemic provided a big lesson in agility for companies, as they had to be agile to adapt and respond quickly to the many challenges the companies suddenly were facing.
This led to companies realize how important it is to be comfortable with changes in the company and their willingness to shift gears when necessary. For many companies this shift unveiled their gaps and weaknesses in the business, helping them to improve these for the future.
Lesson 2: The real value of modern technology options
The modern technology options for communicating and collaborating have become a huge eye-opener for many businesses. You suddenly didn’t have to cross the world to participate in conference rooms but instead participate in online meetings from your office chair. This saves you a lot of hours traveling and thereby financial savings.
The report showed that 67% of the respondents said they agree or strongly agree that the pandemic has accelerated our adoption of cloud-based communications, collaboration, and productivity tools.
More than half of the respondents (58%) also said that they are actually using technology that was already available to them but previously rejected or ignored.
Ultimately, the respondents agreed that modern digital collaborations and communications tools have already become the new normal for many and will remain staple after the Covid-19 pandemic.
Lesson 3: The true nature of workforce productivity
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the health issues following, a lot of employees were working from home (average of 4.7x more home workers compared to pre-pandemic). This revealed that without all of the interruptions and distractions at the physical office, they have become much more effective and productive.
This way of work has also caused many healthy practices to surface, and many of the respondents say that these practices are here to stay after the pandemic.
The practices that are believed to stay include businesses being more trusting and empowering of employees which 53% of the respondents believe to stay, managers increasing flexible working hours (49%), virtual teams working across locations and department (38%), and agile teams forming and disbanding around specific activities (37%).
Lesson 4: The essential nature of social interaction
Digital collaboration tools have become very useful for businesses and will most certainly remain after the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, the new way of working from home unveiled the lack of social interaction and the need for this, where 64% of the respondents citing loss of informal kitchen and watercooler-style exchanges as a challenge.
To try and mitigate this, 67% of the respondents say that they have been implemented social video conferencing “meetups”, social chat channels (54%), news catch-ups (46%), and interactive quizzes or competitions (36%).
Lesson 5: The future of health and wellbeing
The Covid-19 pandemic had a huge impact on people’s health and wellbeing in businesses.
In the survey based on the answers of the 100 IT professionals showed that 76% felt employees found it hard to maintain their work-life balance, with 73% reporting that it was harder for them to maintain staff momentum and morale.
This led many managers genuinely concerned about the conditions their employees could be working under.
However, the increases in these challenges have forced the companies to set focus on these and find ways to handle them.
The report found that 47% of the respondents believe that as a result, employee wellbeing and work-life balance will have increased emphasis long-term and 56% had the same beliefs in employee engagement.
Lesson 6: The extended talent opportunity
As some companies have had to rapidly respond to the pandemic by sending employees to remote work, people have witnessed how successful a virtual workplace can be. The same thing has also resulted in remote recruitment and hiring, as companies are beginning to see the value of these talent pools.
Half of the respondents believe that virtual recruitment and hiring almost certainly or probably leads to a more inclusive recruitment policy to tap into a broader talent pool.
No one wished or wanted the Covid-19 crisis to happen, but why not take a look at some of the good and interesting initiatives that the virus had led to and bring those initiatives into your company!
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