Twitter and Facebook react to coronavirus and urge their employees to work from homeRecently, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the outbreak of COVID-19 to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern . As a result, companies such as Twitter and Facebook have reacted by urging their employees to work from home. These firms are key players and will influence others with their efforts to minimize the spread of the coronavirus. Tech giant Google and investment bank JPMorgan, are also said to be testing out remote working policies as a precaution.
Video conferencing is gaining in importance
While many companies are seeing cracks because of the global outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, others are gaining in importance. Video conferencing and video meetings, for example, have become increasingly vital in times like these. With travel restrictions and companies advising their employees to stay at home, we see a permanent shift in workplace dynamics.
We have written about the benefits of working from home, but never before, has remote work been as crucial as it is now. Only 3.4% of the world's population works from home. However, a global remote worker poll from 2019 found that 99% of remote workers said they would like to work at least some of the time remotely for the rest of their careers. Especially as a result of the coronavirus, companies have to become more tolerant about working from home. Partly, because some workers have to take on childcare duties amid school closures. For this reason and the obvious one of reducing the risk of infection, it has become a public health concern to allow for remote work.
Companies will think about a remote work strategy for their employees
While we can't predict the long time effects of the coronavirus, there is one thing that is certain: Companies will have to think about a remote work strategy for their employees. Are companies ready for that? Probably not. However, with a proper setup, remote work is not only possible for many jobs, but also quite convenient. Inevitably, people will start asking themselves post-crisis: "Why don't we do this all the time?" With lots of successful companies being fully remote (meaning they have no office buildings and allow their employees to work from anywhere), it is getting easier for others to benefit and learn from their experiences.
Out of caution and care, we should all take a step back (quite literally) and start to work from home, if possible. It will hopefully slow down the spread of the coronavirus, as well as allow for a new outlook on our workplace dynamics.