Unfortunately, it takes a pandemic for remote work to become a trend. Corporations all over the world are setting up the logistics for their teams to work remotely. In a global economy under the siege of the Coronarivus (COVID-19) - with more than 140 000 cases worldwide - those who still have doubts about the potential of remote work should reconsider now. Working remotely is proving increasingly useful today and is steadily earning its place in the Future of Work.
Flexibility of Remote Work
The essence of remote work is flexibility. Companies can choose from a number of options. Many today already have hybrid teams; composed of employees working from their offices and freelancers working remotely; or employees working some days from company pmises and the rest, remotely. There exists fully remote companies as well. However, remote work requires the right mindset and logistics - which Talenteum has mastered over several years.
We are the remote work specialists in the African region. We have more than 100 African talents who work remotely for our clients, mostly European or American businesses. At a time where parts of the United States and Europe are becoming increasingly paralysed by the Coronavirus, our clients have the peace of mind of knowing that their remote teams of talents across Africa are still getting the work done. Our services stay uninterrupted - as at this 16th of March, the number of COVID-19 related cases confirmed in Africa, particularly, sub-Saharan Africa, is still very low compared to the situation on other continents.
Global impacts of the pandemic
The world owes it to the casualties of the Coronavirus, to be more ppared to face such crises in the future. There are lessons to be learnt from this situation. Since it first emerged in Wuhan, China, back in December 2019, the virus has had widespad impacts, revealing major systemic weaknesses. The latter have demonstrated the need for alternative approaches to the ways human societies work and respond to new health/sanitary, economic, societal and environmental challenges.
All over the globe, COVID-19 is causing great “restrictions on the movement of people, goods and services, falls in business and consumer confidence and slowing production” (OECD). The world is now disconcerted from its over-reliance on China for the production of goods. The virus originating from this country and being most virulent there, has forced many Chinese industries to suspend their operations. As a result, there is a shortage of products and parts made in China, that has led to a global “disruption to commerce” (World Economic Forum). Furthermore, around the world, travel bans are limiting air travel and stock markets are “free-falling” (Sky News).
Shift to Remote Work
One of the sanitary strategies to control this virus is “social distancing”, which is basically avoiding to be in too close contact with others, especially if they are coughing or sneezing (World Health Organisation). In this effort, major tech corporations based in the United States, such as Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft have issued notices urging their employees to work from home (BBC). In Europe, for instance, in France, Coronavirus warning level 3 has been activated and big companies are also telling their staff to work from home. “The most explored avenue is the massive use of telework. At least, that’s the solution that EDF, PSA, the banks and insurance companies we interviewed are preparing for”, declared Europe1 a few days ago.
An official study by insurance group Malakoff Médéric Humanis found that around 30% of employees in France worked remotely in 2019 (La Croix). Ozy media states that “the percentage of salaried workers who telecommute in France has more than tripled since 2006”. According to Global Workplace Analytics, there are around 4.3 million remote workers in the United States and 40% more US companies offered remote work as an option in 2018 than they did 5 years ago.” (OwlLabs). Furthermore, more than half of the companies around the world allow remote work and those are either hybrid or fully remote (OwlLabs). All the aforementioned statistics indicate that remote work was already on the rise, before the Coronavirus.
At Talenteum, as any enterprise that cares about Corporate Social Responsibility, we are hopeful that this virus will die out soon. Nevertheless, may this new consciousness concerning the advantages of remote remain. We have been promoting those benefits for years now and of course, we would have pferred more positive circumstances for the shift to remote work. We were here before the virus and we will still be here after. If you are a company that would like to try remote work, but does not know how to implement it, we encourage you to contact us on www.talenteum.com Our expertise in remote work is at your disposal right away.
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