In the 2nd of our monthly series, we look at the major WFH news for the past month of May 2021. The general consensus in the US and other western countries is that the virus is rescinding with hope of the vaccine rollout helping to open up respective economies.
Having said this, there is a general split between how companies are going to allow employees to work in the post Covid world and we can see this in the news updates below:
Twitter Says Employees Can Work From Home After Virus Recedes – this is in line with a lot of the big tech companies, who are a natural fit allowing workers to continue working from home on a more long term basis.
On the other side of the spectrum we read that Goldman Sachs (major US investment banking firm) Tells Employees To Return To The Office, as Wall Street pushes back on the work-from-home trend. The Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon called remote work an “aberration” and not conducive to productivity. Solomon said, “I do think for a business like ours, which is an innovative, collaborative apprenticeship culture, this is not ideal for us. And it’s not a new normal.”
It seems like there are different trends within different industries and an excerpt from the above article affirms this: “A survey of 400 financial services executives in North America, conducted by global management consulting firm Accenture, found that about 80% of the leadership prefers workers to spend four to five days in the office when the pandemic is over.”
Over in Europe, there was interesting article on the BBC about No full-time return to the office for over a million. Almost all of 50 of the UK’s biggest employers questioned by the BBC said they would embrace a mix of home and office working, with staff encouraged to work from home two to three days a week. This is what is now commonly referred to as Hybrid Working and the general consensus is that this will be the future for the majority. The WSJ wrote an article on the ‘Messy affair of Hybrid Working’ here.
A lot of the private sector have come out stating their planned working models plans for post Covid but we haven’t heard much from the public sector. It was interesting to read that the Biden administration moved toward making the pandemic work-from-home experiment permanent for many federal workers. This is certainly a sweeping cultural change that would have been unthinkable a year ago.
Finally, the Financial Times wrote a personable and real life story about a how WFH had given this parent a reboot – a story a lot of parents can relate to and holds a lot of truth!