the core of the problem
Working from home, or short WFH, is something most companies have not been prepared for. It is a tricky situation, especially if the companies in question have not been at least partly trying to implement this concept before. The problem now: there is no test phase, no a-b test, no real option of getting used to working like this right now.
Europes home-office capabilities
Bloomberg Business - Social Media
A potential complete lock-down is not an unreasonable concept anymore and a few european countries have proceeded to take strong measures in this direction. Going to work is still, of course, one of the allowed “activities” that can be done. But more and more people are afraid or at least cautious with going outside and wherever home-office is an option more and more people choose this mode as their prefered way of working. This is understandable and should also be considered by the management and HR because WFH is not only a security measure but a way of reducing anxiety and panic for employees.
It should however also be understandable that many companies are reluctant to offer this way of working. Many problems arise when offering this option, especially if the infrastructure of the companies is not prepared for such a step. These problems and contra-arguments will be explored a little later in the blog post. First the elephant in the room has to be addressed: this is not really an issue of feasibility! Almost every company could offer such an option to their employees and with the current covid-19 situation we think this is something every company should do. But here is what’s at the core of this problem - it all about trust, trust and discipline, if employers can’t trust their employees to do the work they should do unsupervised, they won’t enable WFH, if the employees have no discipline they know that this is a somewhat sensible decision from the management.
This makes the problem oftentimes hard to solve, so here is our advice: talk, explain and search for solutions. Communication is the main thing that will get a company through this. Be transparent in why the decision is difficult and together look for a solution. We will soon post another blog that details how such a solution could look. In the end the goal should be to enable this option, both for short and long-term reasons, the discussion trust versus discipline therefore has to be a practical one, setting modes of communication and tracking work as well as times of availability.
WFH could be greatly improved with a fully functional ERP system such as Odoo, which could also offer many advantages in this area, but WFH can also be possible without this kind of backbone. We hope this blog also started a conversation about working from home in your office and that you will come back for the next post on whate guidelines and ideas you should follow to make this a functioning and advantageous solution.