”Good-bye, office!”- Five companies that choose flexibility

Diana Nădejde

9 minutes read

The economic development has accelerated technological progress, paving the way for the concept of “remote work” as we know it today.

Since the early 90s, companies such as IBM and AT&T have started offering their employees the opportunity to work remotely on a daily basis.

Enjoying a great success, the idea spread rapidly. Later, we also started to use project management tools, providing us a full experience from a teleworking perspective too.

Therefore, we can say that the IT & technology field is the “pioneer” of remote work, being the first compatible with this work system.

On the other hand, nowadays, due to increasingly diverse procedures, many sectors of activity can choose to work from anywhere.

We present you below five multinational companies which, without being part of “The Big Tech”, want to offer more flexibility to their employees in the future by choosing a remote or hybrid model.

1. Deloitte

Deloitte employees will be able to work wherever they want once Covid restrictions are lifted. Compared to others, the company’s staff doesn’t have to work from the office for a minimum number of days a week.

About 15.000 Deloitte employees responded to an internal survey about the future of work. As a result, more than 80% of them said they expect to work from the office for two days a week or less.

Around 90% of the Deloitte workforce said that “choice” and “flexibility” should be at the heart of how the business operates in the future.

According to Deloitte senior partner and chief executive officer Richard Houston, people will have the possibility to choose which work model suits them, precisely in order to balance work and personal life.

2. Generali Group

The Italian insurance company Generali (GASI.MI) is considering a hybrid model for the post-pandemic era, by adopting a work style that enables employees to blend working from different locations: from home, other spaces or at the office.

The model will be hybrid. Our view is (that) a good balance would imply 60% in the office. We also believe that it has to be organized.“, said Philippe Donnet, CEO Generali, in a press statement.

Thanks to the “Smart working in work” policy, before the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, the company allowed members of certain departments to work remotely only a few days a week. For example, in France, employees have been able to work for 2/3 days a week since 2016. At the end of 2018, around 31% of employees chose this working method. Smart working has also been extended to the sales network.

3. Ford Motor Company

As CNBC pointed out, Ford broke many barriers, becoming the first automaker to launch a flexible work-from-home plan in the long term. According to official data, around 86.000 employees will be able to choose to work at least partially from home or wherever they want.

Basically, the policy is aimed at office workers rather than factory workers whose tasks involve manufacturing. Therefore, the hybrid or remote working model strategy will depend on individual responsibilities.

According to a survey conducted at Ford in June 2020, 95% of employees wanted a hybrid work system, while others felt more productive at home. In the future, the company will continue to learn and adapt to the employee needs, as well as to what health officials recommend.

4. British Airways

The UK company will allow its employees to split their working lives between the head office and remote, being another example of a globally renowned company that offers flexible jobs. The company is also considering the sale of its Waterside HQ, located near Heathrow Airport, where 2.000 people worked before the Covid- 19 outbreak.

Stuart Kennedy, the airline’s director of staff, stated in an internal message that one of the few positive aspects generated by the pandemic was how well employees managed to cope with remote work.

We’ll want to consider what the ideal office layout for the future will be. Perhaps it’s less fixed desks and more casual meeting areas, and we need to consider colleague wellbeing, too.“, he said.

5. Coca Cola India

According to a new policy launched last year, Coca-Cola India has recently introduced an option for its employees to work remote permanently, even post-pandemic, if their physical presence is not required in the office. This strategy drafted by the beverage company covers the best interest and care of its employees.

To emphasize this, the organization provides technical support to employees by sending ergonomic chairs to eligible ones on their request. Coca-Cola will also provide financial aid for installing power backup options like UPS. More than that, to facilitate a smooth workflow, the company will also bear the cost of monthly Wi-Fi subscriptions.

On the other hand, employees who choose #workfromhome can receive monetary support to purchase office tables, headsets, lights, a webcam or an external microphone, and why not, coffee or floral arrangements.

In the not-too-distant past, the concept of remote work sounded too good to be true. However, due to economic and social changes, an increasing number of companies offer flexible jobs nowadays, even in some fields that we wouldn’t think about initially.

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Written by Diana Nădejde

Contributor

Originally a legal consultant, but more of a communication person, passionate about writing, digitalization, social media, history and philosophy. At the same time, I don’t think there is a problem that can’t be solved with a good book or a series.

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