The COVID-19 worldwide lockdown has led to a radical change in the use of technology and expanded remote working possibilities. This has meant that the workplace of the future has already moved into many organizations in the form of increased digitalization and working from home. Many organizations are following up on the experiences of working remotely. The preliminary results show that many organizations have experienced a significant decrease in sick leave, for example, sick leave has decreased by 64% at the Danish Safety Technology Authority.
The economic benefits of reducing sick leave are palpable. Last year, the Confederation of Danish Employers estimated that sick leave costs society DKK 46 billion annually. We’re not talking about small change here. Private companies and public organizations can save significantly by reducing sick leave.
There are two primary reasons for the decline in sick leave during the current COVID-19 pandemic. First and foremost, the general population has a much greater focus on hygiene to decrease the spread of the coronavirus. We all know the authorities’ hygiene advice:
- Wash hands frequently or use hand sanitizer
- Cough or sneeze into your sleeve
- Avoid handshakes, kisses, and hugs
- Pay attention to cleaning, at home and work
- Keep your distance and ask others to be considerate
The second reason is remote work. The widespread of remote work has given many families a more flexible working life instead of the constraints of a 9 to 5 schedule. The increased flexibility has made it easier to balance work and personal/family life. Unquestionably, all other things being equal, many now feel less stressed in everyday life, which in turn means that the probability of sick leave decreases. In short, the first results show that an increase in remote work reduces stress and sick leave. But three things need to be in place to reap the benefits of an increased in remote work without compromising the organization’s productivity:
- You need to have a handle on your tech. Employees need to have the same access to IT systems and relevant tools at home as they do at the office.
- Your employees need to be equipped to take advantage of new technological opportunities and that they feel familiar with the application of the new technology and tools.
- As employees will using 40% of their time working from home, you need to ensure that work processes and routines around the technology are thought into their everyday lives. You have to be aware of whether the current processes around the technology need to be adjusted to the new reality.
Is your organization technologically ready for remote work?
It’s important to examine the technological readiness of your organization to ensure employee productivity when they’re working from home. We’ve made a test that can give you a quick assessment.
However, if you’d like a thorough evaluation of all levels of your organization, we can take care of that as well. Contact us and have a personalized technological readiness assessment within two weeks.
Our consultants are ready to help you and set up a live report.