The Future of Work is Remote

Just over a year ago, most white-collar workers in the UK shifted from operating in the office to balancing their laptops on the sofas, kitchen tables, and armchairs in their homes. The switch to remote working was shockingly swift as employees and managers learned how to communicate exclusively through Zoom meetings, instant messaging, phone calls, and email.

At first, most employees could appreciate the perks of a ten-step commute from the bedroom to the kitchen table, marvelling at all the extra time in the day and the money saved on petrol or public transport. For others, the transition was tough to manage while balancing other duties like childcare and looking after elderly relatives. Those who lived alone struggled with isolation, missing face-to-face interactions with their colleagues and bonding over office banter. Social media was abuzz with reports of Zoom fatigue and struggles with work-life balance, with employees in North America, Europe, and the Middle East reported to be working an extra 48.5 minutes per day.

Navigating remote work has had its ups and downs throughout the course of this pandemic, but one thing is becoming increasingly clear: remote work is likely here to stay.

According to Gartner, 74% of businesses intend to permanently shift toward remote working after the pandemic ends. The biggest tech companies are already leading the way: Twitter and Square employees have been told they can work from home indefinitely, while Facebook has announced that half of its staff would be able to work remotely by the end of the decade.

Businesses may be motivated to shift to a partially-remote setup to save money on commercial office space and enjoy boosted levels of productivity. A survey by Mercer revealed that 83% of employers plan to enact more flexible work policies post-pandemic, with one in three employers expecting half of their staff to work remotely. To put that in perspective, before Covid-19 only one in 30 employers would allow remote working.

But given the laundry list of issues employees might face when working from home, how do you ensure high levels of productivity without sacrificing well-being?

To ascertain how your organisation can achieve great results while maintaining team wellbeing, our partners at SHL created the RemoteWorkQ assessment to deliver invaluable insights.

As a leader in occupational psychology and the inventor of workplace psychometric analytics, SHL recently introduced a powerfully predictive questionnaire that is completely unique in the marketplace. The RemoteWorkQ assessment takes only ten minutes to complete, measures eight critical behaviours for successful remote working, and delivers dynamic feedback and advice to help managers and remote staff adjust to this new world of work.

Based on employees’ responses to the RemoteWorkQ assessment, SHL determines whether individuals have the potential to exhibit behaviours in several performance areas that lead to productive and sustainable remote working. Categories measure how well employees maintain good working relationships, offer help, work autonomously, use time efficiently, stay focused, adapt to change, focus on self-development, and take action.

If a candidate scores low in certain performance areas, SHL delivers personalised coaching and tips to help individuals create a development plan and improve their home-working behaviours. Test results help managers get an overview of who needs support and where; additionally, SHL provides guidance on how managers can engage with employees and meet their needs.

This latest SHL assessment, crafted by hundreds of occupational psychologists and built upon billions of data points, could not come at a better time for employers searching for the tools to help their staff adjust to home working. If you are interested in building a remote working environment that optimises your employees’ productivity and wellbeing, identifies key strengths and areas to improve, and transforms your business, then we at Jo Thompson Recruitment highly recommend the RemoteWorkQ assessment.