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There’s no doubt about it, the COVID-19 crisis will have lasting effects on our lives. It has tested our adaptability, creativity, resilience, and determination. While it’s impossible to predict exactly what the impact will be on businesses in the coming months and even years, these 4 changes will likely remain post-pandemic.
Remote Work Is Here to Stay
With stay-at-home orders in place for most parts of the country, companies were quickly forced to adapt to remote work policies. A recent study done prior to the COVID-19 crisis found that only 3.6% of the employee workforce work from home at least half the time. According to Kate Lister, President of Global Workplace Analytics, “Our best estimate is that 25-30% of the workforce will be working-from-home multiple days a week by the end of 2021.”
Even when restrictions are gradually lifted, many companies may choose to continue with remote operations, realizing that remote work can be a successful and cost-effective solution. According to Lister, “A typical employer can save about $11,000/year for every person who works remotely half of the time”.
For those businesses that return to a regular office setting post-pandemic, the shift will undoubtedly be towards a new office layout allowing for additional space between coworkers. The social distancing protocol that we have been accustomed to following while grocery shopping or being in public places will carry over to the workplace. While the open concept layout of shared workspaces such as WeWork has grown in popularity in recent years, we will undeniably see a downtrend in these spaces as employees demand safety and personal space.
Many companies are also discussing the possibility of staggered shifts. This would allow for less density of employees in one space at any given time. Shift A could work from home one day while shift B works from home the second day.
Business Travel Will Be Reduced
With flights grounded and travel restrictions in place, companies have been forced to rethink business travel. The result has been a realization that technology can be leveraged in new ways to conduct virtual conferences, trainings, trade shows, and negotiations.
The economic impact of the pandemic will also force many employers to cut costs and business travel will be one of the biggest areas to save money. Virtual events are going to continue to gain popularity in the coming months as videoconferencing becomes a widely adopted, acceptable, and lucrative alternative to face-to-face meetings.
Greater Focus on Health and Hygiene
Businesses will be required to update their hygiene policy. Temperature checks, antibody screenings, and workers wearing masks may become the new normal to ensure the safety of all workers. There will be a much greater focus on providing a safe and sanitary work environment. Hand sanitizers, restrooms with touchless faucets, automatic doors, and heightened cleaning protocols are a must.
As the business world slowly gets back to whatever the new normal may be, taking proper precautions now will help futureproof your company.
At SBG Funding, we recognize that these are unprecedented times and we are here to help however we can. The situation is constantly evolving and navigating it can be complex and overwhelming. That’s why we’ll be adding new information and resources for small business owners impacted by the pandemic on our COVID-19 Resource Center as soon as it becomes available.
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