The post-Covid-19 culture, while disrupting the entire global economy and businesses, has brought a few significant changes in the work cultures of many organizations. The morning rush hours, timely log-ins, coffee breaks with colleagues, meeting room discussions, and returning after a productive day to a place called home is now a past participle.
The pandemic was one such event that confined every office enthusiast to his/her tiny bedroom office and that team outing that you were so excited about is now just a namesake in your office schedule. Employees are now being sent home, to work. As corporate offices are providing various options to work from different settings, some employees rejoice while some miss the good old office days.
- ONVU Technologies
- Tata Steel
About the Pre Pandemic Work Culture
Up until the novel coronavirus declared its existence, corporates were ruled by unforgiving and orthodox work settings where an employee almost lived a robotic life. This changed almost overnight since companies were forced to resume day-to-day activities to keep maintain the corporate status quo.
A lot has changed during the pandemic when employees were made to resume work from home. Companies made sure that everything is made available to them to keep the show running.
But as we move on to the post-pandemic world, corporate offices have dissolved so many of their office spaces and the employees are being asked to work from home on a permanent basis, while others have resorted to hybrid work cultures.
Companies embracing Permanent Work from Home Culture:
As we settle into the post-pandemic world, companies are willing to adjust and continue working from home as the “new normal”. Some companies have asked their employees to work from home as a permanent solution. Meanwhile, others are yet to figure out and are working on hybrid work settings where employees are allowed to work from home as well as from office premises.
Here’s a list of the companies that have decided to offer permanent work from home for their employees:
Atlassian is an Australian software company that manufactures and develops collaboration, management, and issue tracking software for the teams. The software company based out of Sydney, New South Wales, had effectively dealt with the Covid-19 pandemic by providing work from home for its employees. The company announced permanent work from home for its employees first on August 8, 2020.
Atlassian disclosed the all-new “Team Anywhere” policy in April 2021, which further cemented its decision to work from home. Under this policy, the company allowed its employees to work from any location in a country where Atlassian exists as a corporate entity provided that the employee has the legal right to work and is aligned together with his/her team members, bound by the same time zones and.
Brex is a fintech company headquartered in California, United States. The company is well-known for its distinguished credit cards and effective cash management solutions that they extend to their customers.
Though the COVID-19 posed a problem to many firms around the globe, Brex was one of the companies that tackled it efficiently. The company announced work from home to be permanent for its employees on September 14, 2020, and emerged as a remote-first employer.
Brex further clarified on July 15, 2021, that the company will stand as a virtual-first company and no longer have a physical headquarter.
Coinbase is a US-based company that acts as an online platform and allows merchants, consumers, and traders to transact with digital currency. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Coinbase allows its users to create bitcoin wallets, connect them to their bank accounts and then start buying and selling bitcoins.
Coinbase has shifted to work from home ever since the coronavirus pandemic broke in. Later in 2020, the company further announced that it will serve as a remote-first company, which will allow its employees to work from home for an indefinite period whoever chooses to do so. Coinbase is minimizing its offices in a single location in order to distribute its offices far and wide and expand its geographical presence.
Dropbox is based out of the USA with its headquarters in San Francisco, California. A smart workspace company, Dropbox makes it easy for its users to store their files, share them securely and collaborate without any hassles.
The California-based company file-sharing firm has declared work from home from March 6th onwards of 2020. Dropbox then announced that it will emerge as a virtual-first company in October 2020. It also has plans of launching Dropbox Studios as collaborative spaces in its office locations. Furthermore, Dropbox agreed to follow the nonlinear workdays and allow their employees to design their own work schedules.
Novartis is a healthcare company from Basel-Stadt, Switzerland that offers pharmaceutical and healthcare solutions to its customers from all over the world.
The Swiss healthcare company already had a manager-approved work from home policy for its employees. Soon after the strike of the pandemic the company opted for work from home policy and in July 2020, it further announced a shift from manage-approved work from home to manager-informed work from home. To clarify things, Novartis has already declared that its employees can choose how, when and from where they would be working post-pandemic.
ONVU Technologies is an information technology company based in London, UK, with its offices operating globally. Some of the major locations that ONVU Technologies has its offices in include India, the USA, and Turkey.
The company has already announced a fully remote workforce back in the month of February. Ragini Sidhu, Human Resources VP, mentioned that ONVU Technologies is confident about its decision to work from home, which will enable the employees to adjust their time according to their preferences. This entirely comes from the trust that it places on the employees.
The world-famous Question and Answer platform is based out of California, with its office in Mountain View city of California, US. Quora allows numerous people from all around the world to post on the platform commenting on topics of mutual interest. The sole aim of Quora is to gather knowledge and expand its database of Q&A.
The Q&A giant has embraced a remote-first model early in the month of June. The company has stated that more than 60% of its workforce had preferred doing work from home even post-Covid19, which is why they have made such a decision. The headquarters of the office in Mountain View would be emerging in a co-working space where only the cameras need to be turned on as part of their criteria.
One of the most popular social media platforms of the world, Twitter helps its users create micro-blogs of around 280 characters called Tweets and share their own views on their Twitter profiles concerning anything. The company operates from its headquarters in San Francisco, California, United States. Here's the 10 Interesting Facts about the Twitter's CEO you probably didn't know.
Following the coronavirus pandemic outbreak, Twitter announced work from home for its staff. However, within two months the company made another announcement to make work from home a permanent affair, except for those who need to be present physically at the office because their work entails them to do so.
The cloud-based multichannel platform headquartered in Ontario, Canada helps small and medium-sized businesses to create, design, and manage their stores and across multiple sales channels.
The company avoided confusion and decided to go to work from home since the pandemic struck. The physical offices of Shopify remained closed till 2021 when they were worked on to establish the required facilities to support working in the pandemic condition. Furthermore, Shopify had also let its employees know of the permanent switch to remote work via the tweet from the CEO of the firm.
Slack is a California-based enterprise software platform that helps individuals and professional teams working under a company to communicate without any hassles. Slack was acquired by Salesforce on December 1, 2020.
Slack swiftly shifted its workforce to work from home as soon as the pandemic broke out and then decided to make it a permanent way of work. Furthermore, Slack is also increasingly hiring remote-first employees since its announcement in June.
Spotify is a Sweden-based commercial music streaming service that extends a world of songs and music albums from diverse record labels to its members and other individuals. This company has quickly embraced the work from home policy for its employees as soon as the shadows of the Covid19 pandemic started hovering over the world.
The music streaming company has further confirmed in February 2021 that it has decided on a work from anywhere policy for its employees. According to this policy, Spotify employees can work from home or office, wherever they want, even after the pandemic ends. However, the decision should be a unanimous one, which will be decided between the employees and their managers. Furthermore, the employees can even work outside of their city or country too, even at places where there aren't any Spotify offices. Moreover, they can also obtain membership of Spotify co-working spaces, which they have set up in all those areas that they do not have any offices.
Square is a financial service, merchant services aggregator and digital payments platform headquartered in San Francisco, California, and founded by Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, and Jim McKelvey.
California-based Square, Dorsey’s company, was soon to follow the work from the home policy after Twitter agreed on it. Furthermore, the company also announced that they will allow their employees to continue working from home and anywhere they want to work from. However, only the employees whose physical presence is needed in the office have to work from the office.
Upwork is a digital platform for freelancers around the globe where enterprises, entrepreneurs, and others offer short-term and long-term freelancing works for those who are eligible for them.
With the strike of the coronavirus pandemic, Upwork didn’t delay providing their employees with work from home opportunities to keep up with their productivity. The remote job listing platform then decided to practice what it preaches and in May 2021, with the Twitter announcement of CEO Hayden Brown, the company became a remote-first company. Square, is now a permanent work-from-home company.
Zillow is an online real-estate company from Seattle, Washington, which offers a platform for its users who are looking for information regarding homes, real estate, and mortgages.
Zillow decided on flexible work from home options for its employees in the month of July. According to Dan Spaulding, Chief People Officer of the company, the employees can work from anywhere where they can be productive. For this, they can choose to work from the office, from home, or a combination of both.
Tata Steel Limited is an Indian steel manufacturing company. Originally founded in Jamshedpur as Tata Iron and Steel Company (TISCO) by Jamsetji Tata in 1907, Tata Steel Limited is currently headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra. The company now sees its operations across 26 countries with key operations in India, Netherlands, and United Kingdom, employing around 80,500 people worldwide.
Right from when the pandemic started dangerously spreading far and wide in 2020, Tata Steel declared a work from home policy for its employees. The company further announced on November 1, 2020, that it has embraced an ‘Agile Working Model’ policy for its employees from then onwards. Under this new working model, the employees of Tata Steel could opt to work from home (WFH) for up to 365 days a year. Furthermore, even the officers who were required to be based out of a particular location can choose to WFH for an unlimited number of days per year.
The social media behemoth Meta, which was formerly dubbed as Facebook, Inc., is based in Menlo Park, California. Originally founded in 2004 as TheFacebook by Harvard university graduates, Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes, the social media platform adopted the name Facebook and became incredibly popular all across the globe. However, the company of the leading social media platform was rebranded to Meta on October 28, 2021. This rebranding was done because of the rising potential of the growth of the company to other horizons beyond just social media. The name "Meta" for "Facebok Inc." was modeled on the term "metaverse", which echoes working and playing in the virtual world. Facebook or Meta had successfully amassed around 2.9 billion monthly users, as of 2021.
Meta had already been allowing its employees to work from home or wherever they find fit. The founder of the company, Mark Zuckerberg deems that the shift to remote work will be a lasting one at Facebook, which will allow its employees to work from wherever they can be live. Therefore, it is a permanent work from home for the employees of the world’s largest social network.
"We believe how we work is more important than where we work," said Facebook when it shared an update to its remote work policy.
Meta has started an "office deferral program", as per the reports dated December 8, 2021. This plan will help the Meta employees gain flexibility enough to return to their offices because a majority of the employees might not be confident to return back to their offices. The social media giant also confirmed on December 7, 2021, via Reuters that it will fully reopen its U.S. offices on 31st Jan the next year. However, the office will remain flexible to a delay of 3 - 5 months for the joining of its employees.
Companies going for a Hybrid Model:
Now let’s look at the offices that have decided on a hybrid model for the benefit of themselves and their employees:
Google, the Search engine giant from the United States, didn’t hesitate to go to work from home as soon as the pandemic broke out. It was a work from home throughout for the employees of Google in 2020 when the situation turned worse in America and elsewhere in the world. Though there were words that Google will open its offices in 2021, according to the latest announcements of the Search Engine behemoth, the employees can continue working from home through June 2021. CEO of Alphabet and Google, Sundar Pichai also declared that those who need not be present at the offices for their work can continue their voluntary work from home for 12 more months. Know more about How Effective is Google's "Hybrid Work week".
The American multinational automobile company based in Dearborn, Michigan, United States, maintained a work from home policy for its employees when the pandemic struck. It then conducted a work preference survey in June 2020, where around 95% of the company’s employees preferred a combination of work from home and work from the office over working from either of the places permanently.
The Michigan-based vehicle manufacturers made an announcement on March 17, 2021, to opt for a hybrid working model for their employees. According to the announcement, Ford employees based in the United States can join their offices from July onwards for small team meets, if they want to.
The software developer and marketer of software products based in Cambridge, United States, preferred to stick to a work from home policy in 2020, the year the pandemic went into a rage. However, with the start of the new year, in January 2021, Hubspot came up with 3 options for the employees where they can work from home, work from the office or opt for a hybrid model. It also stated that those who want to work from the office can only do so for 2 days a week, where they will be allocated hotel desks. Furthermore, the employees choosing any of the above options can also change their working plans once a year.
The financial software developer from California, Intuit Inc. is another company that chose to go for a hybrid model after the severity of the coronavirus pandemic lessened. The Quickbooks company declared their preference of opting for a hybrid work model that would be in effect from August 2021 onwards in April.
The decision that Intuit made was based on a survey of its employees where only 14% of the Intuit employees said that they want to work from home. The Inuit employees who want to work from the office can work 2-3 days a week.
The American software giant, Microsoft, shifted to work from home to avoid the pandemic woes. Microsoft unfolded greater flexibilities around its work policy in October 2020. The company declared its hybrid work policy in October 2020, where Microsoft stated that its employees can telecommute for half of the week or might also have the option for permanent remote working, which they can go for with prior manager approval. Also have a look at these Interesting Facts About Microsoft.
The engineering and electronics company from Germany, Siemens was yet another company on the list of the companies that are preferring a hybrid work model in sharp contrast to those who are opting for work from the office or work from home. Know all about the subsidiaries of Siemens.
The Munich-based electronics manufacturer declared in July 2020 that its employees can telecommute 2-3 days a week and this shall continue even after the pandemic sees its end. The working policy would be applicable for around 1,40, 000 employees of the company based out of 43 different countries.
The financial institution from the United Kingdom decided to let its employees work from home while the pandemic was still strong and following this the company also ramped down many of its small offices spread across the country. Most of the employees that worked in these offices were thus granted permanent work from home. However, Nationwide opened 4 corporate offices of the company in Ohio, Iowa, Arizona, and Texas where they will continue to work from.
The social news aggregation, web content rating, and discussion website founded in Massachusetts, United States, has granted work from home for their employees during the pandemic days. However, the company announced later in October 2020 that Reddit’s employees can decide which model of work they will be comfortable in. The options were working from home, working from the office, and a combination of both of them. Most of the employees were flexible to decide their work model except facility and IT employees, who cannot work from home and will be required in the office. For the payment of the employees, Reddit decided to pay its employees as per the payment standards in expensive areas like San Francisco and New York.
Salesforce is an American cloud-based company from San Francisco that offers enterprise-level applications, customer relationship management services, and more. The cloud-based customer service provider surveyed its employees where most of them (around 80%) were interested in keeping a close connection with the physical office space. This is why Salesforce, which already decided to be flexible for the employees to choose their work preference, decided that it will embrace a flex-policy, which is similar to hybrid work culture. In such a work model, the Salesforce employees would have to work from the office 1-3 days a week and for the rest of the days, they can work from home uninterruptedly.
One of the Big Five in the U.S, Amazon climbed the ladder of popularity via its eCommerce. The company started as an online marketplace for books and has eventually expanded to offer a range of products across countless industries. The Jeff Bezos-founded company now stands as an American multinational conglomerate that focuses on eCommerce, cloud computing, digital streaming, artificial intelligence, and more. The company has often been cited as "one of the most influential economic and cultural forces in the world" and popularly dubbed as “the world’s most valuable brand.”
Amazon had previously announced that it expects its employees to return back office on September 7, 2021, however, this has now shifted to 3rd January 2022. Besides, the company is also more likely to be going for a hybrid work from home policy soon, as per the reports. According to this policy, Amazon will grant 2 days in a week, when its employees can work from home.
Indian IT giant, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is a multinational company from India, headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra. TCS is a subsidiary of the Tata Group, which has its offices in around 149 locations and across 46 countries of the world. Furthermore, TCS is also recognized as the largest IT services company in the world by market capitalization.
As soon as the pandemic started to spread like wildfire, TCS caught the drift immediately and decided to allow its employees to work from home. Around 97% of the TCS employees are currently working from home, as of September 2021. The brand has shifted to the Work from Anywhere policy and has been following the same since March 2020. TCS has further declared to opt for a hybrid working model, where a ‘significant number’ of people will continue to work from home.
“The future of work will be somewhat hybrid where some people will work from home, sometimes people will come to the office. So, the hybrid will likely be the new normal,” said the Chairman of the company, Natarajan Chandrasekaran.
Infosys is an Indian multinational company that is known for its services in information technology. The company was founded more than 40 years ago in Pune and is currently headquartered in Bangalore. Infosys is known as the second-largest IT company from India after TCS. It is also one of the oldest IT companies from the subcontinent.
Infosys, much like many other IT companies, have decided to allow their employees to work from home ever since the coronavirus pandemic has hit hard. According to the previous reports, the company had announced that it will be exploring a flexible hybrid work model for its employees starting from 2021 owing to the uncertainty of the pandemic. The current reports state that the Infosys employees will not be required to be present in the office on all days, for the next six months at least.
On a virtual event, addressing the work from home policy of the company, Infosys CEO & Managing Director Salil Parekh said that the company has already been successful in building a flexible model with regard to work from home, and now, it is time to start work on building 'social capital'.
Yet another Indian multinational corporation Wipro, might be going for the hybrid model of work. The company that allowed its employees to work comfortably from home during the coronavirus pandemic has given enormous hints that it would be starting a hybrid work policy even after things come back to normalcy. Wipro founder Azim Premji has appreciated the hybrid work concept adopted by the tech companies during the pandemic times. He also pointed out that more than 90% of the technology companies' employees continue to work from home till the present.
Wipro was founded in 1945 by Mohamed Premji in Amalner, Maharashtra and now has its headquarters in Bangalore, Karnataka. It is presently ranked as the 9th largest employer in India with over 200,000 employees.
Maruti Suzuki India Limited or Maruti Suzuki, as it is popularly termed, is an automobile manufacturing company based in New Delhi. The company initially started in 1981 as Maruti Udyog Limited and was owned by the Government of India until 2003, when it was finally sold to the Suzuki Motor Corporation.
Maruti has also thought it fit to let its employees work from home since the coronavirus pandemic broke out. The company has further declared in 2021 that “there will be a section of people who can completely work from remote locations without the need to come to the office.”
Philips is a popular Dutch multinational company that was originally founded as Koninklijke Philips N.V in 1891. Headquartered in Amsterdam and Eindhoven, Philips was hailed as one of the largest electronic companies in the world. The company is currently focused on the healthcare industry and is striving to develop unique electronic products to transform the industry.
Philips had also announced work from home for many of its employees since the pandemic onslaught in 2020. However, a major portion of its workforce who are associated with the healthcare industry also needed to visit their offices almost every day during the pandemic. These employees were either involved with the healthcare providers or engaged in treating the coronavirus-affected patients in an attempt to fight against the dreaded disease.
Why are Companies offering permanent WFH options?
Ever since the pandemic forced everyone to literally lock themselves up in their homes, corporate employees have seen the silver lining in staying away from offices. No hectic commutes, spending time with friends and families, better productivity are some of the positive changes that employees are seen marveling at.
Employers too are not far from noticing these changes and also seeing the perks attached to them. Saving up on office space, electricity, supplies, and other expenses, employers have found ways to get work done remotely and more so, efficiently.
Future of Remote Work
In a study conducted by Leadership IQ, the State of Working From Home, only 9% of the employees said they wanted to get back to their offices. The rest 91% stated that they would prefer working from home permanently while 39% of them they’d like a hybrid work culture.
Working from home is going to be the near future for most employees and none of them seem to bat an eyelid. Companies have now learned that work done remotely is giving them better results and employee retention has gone far from disappointing.
Employees are now experiencing the new normal and adding their own terms to it by rerouting back to lost hobbies and passions. Taking care of the elderly and sick at homes, helping spouses share the household chores, and sharing the responsibilities towards kids is now the new normal.
Zoom calls have transformed office meetings with interruptions by pets and babies. People are less anxious and trying to do more in every aspect. The quality of life has surely turned around as work from home is becoming a permanent thing.
Which are the companies working from home permanently?
Some of the companies that are presently embracing the Permanent WFH Culture are:
- ONVU Technologies
Are employees who work from home more productive?
Yes, most data show that employees are more productive in remote work. Statistics reveal that 77% of the employees who work from home show increased productivity at least a few times each month, while 30% of them have also been discovered to do more work in less time.
Why companies should let employees work remotely?
Companies today should let the employees work from home because it boosts employees' productivity, bears lesser costs for the companies, helps in employee retention, and also ensures a flexible work culture to be followed.
What are the benefits of the permanent work from home model?
Better flexibility for the employees, less commute time, cost-savings for companies, and to an extent for employees too, more independence are some of the benefits of wfh (work from home) model.
What is Hybrid WFH?
The hybrid working model is a location-flexible arrangement, allowing employees to combine onsite and offsite work as they and their employers see fit.
What are the top remote-working tools?
Google Drive, Dropbox, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet are some of the top remote working tools.
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