Post COVID: Looking to the changed landscape of work
As so many of us languish at home dreaming of a sunny crowded beer garden, we here at Sparktel have been wondering exactly how much of this will be permanent and what positive changes could come out of this worrying time.
Troubling world events have, throughout history, brought enormous societal change – The Black Death brought about (or at least hastened) an end to feudalism, tempted peasants into revolts and began the notion of workers organising for fairer conditions. The Spanish Flu of 1918 gave us governmental public health innovations, and World War 2 cemented this thinking into the NHS in the UK. The consequences of Covid-19 will be undoubtedly similar in their world-altering “new normal”. But what are we sure of so far?
· It’s obvious but worth examining….Remote Working is here to stay.
In a global study of senior finance leaders, 74% of companies plan to permanently shift to more remote work post COVID (Gartner, COVID-19 Bulletin: Executive Pulse, 3 April 2020)
· Use of video-conferencing and online subscription platforms have soared – Zoom reached 200 million daily participants by the beginning of April (paid and free) up from just 10 million in December .
· In a 2019 study of remote work by Gartner, it was shown to increase productivity levels by up to 40%. Of course, add a pandemic into the mix and we see the true ups and downs to working from home. On a day when Twitter announced the possibility of staff working remotely permanently, it’s time to prepare for what lies ahead and what we can do to make this a seamless transition from office to home.
Lets think about the barriers and difficulties – it’s easy for us to identify these!
· Childcare – any parents reading this right now with a teacher’s classroom dojo hanging over their heads or struggling with nappy-changing while waiting for a conference call, knows this all too well. Working two jobs, the paid one and the parent one, was what many had to do but sustainably, childcare needs are going to be of the utmost importance while we ride out the rest of this crisis and move onto the next phase.
· Accessibility – Wifi, Equipment – how many of us have this? A lot less than we might have imagined. Across the country many go without broadband and many others, working in jobs traditionally not IT based, do not even have a laptop. A Gartner study of work in Asia / Pacific identified technology and infrastructure as the biggest barrier (54%) to efficient remote work. However, a staggering 91% of work deemed possible was moved remotely out of necessity. What is it about necessity and invention again?
· The devil’s in the detail – a host of other difficulties present themselves as we move through this change. Communication, adequate living space, socialising, team-building, ergonomics… the list goes on. With correct surveys of workers and analysis though, we can make this work long-term and reap the benefits.
…and the positives?
· Staff retention – This one’s simple right? If we can work online, we retain staff. SME’s are innovating and the retail market will change significantly. Digital learning has exploded, and many previous face-to-face meetings, deemed essential, have moved into the online sphere.
· Less travel means less time spent on the roads in the morning, better air quality, and a massive reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
· It also leads to the possibility of more people being afforded the chance to move away from city centres, and choose homes in less crowded, cheaper accommodations.
· Less people in the city means less pressure on the housing market…
· …and as companies look at the savings they will make on commercial rent, it makes simple financial sense to invest in telecoms on a national level.
Before Covid-19 hit the world, climate change, housing, health services and a desire for a better work-life balance occupied our thoughts.
Managed well, could this present an opportunity to work on all these problems cohesively and successfully?
(Still dying for that pint in a beer garden though)
Éadaoin Browne – Dublin – May 2020
Ciara is a personable and results-driven Recruitment Consultant with 4 + years combined experience serving clients in the Construction, Corporate Office, Accounting and Finance Sectors. Experienced in managing full cycle recruitment, she has built her network in several industries and has successfully identified and placed candidates across Ireland and Canada. Her strong relationship building skills, resilient nature and customer focused attitude ensures a favorable outcome for both client and candidate alike.
Ciara holds a BSc in International Business and prides herself on her creative approach to recruitment.
Elizabeth takes an integrated and person-centred approach to recruitment, to ensure she not only delivers talent, but encourages prosperous relationships for all involved.
Elizabeth holds a BSc in Podiatric Medicine from the National University of Ireland, Galway. Her diverse career background within the areas of Healthcare, Event Management, Customer Service and Sales has strongly developed her ability to understand, communicate and facilitate the unique needs of individuals and companies.
Elizabeth’s affable and diligent nature ensures that both clients and jobseekers alike find what they’re looking for, whilst making the process as stress free and enjoyable as possible. She loves a challenge and her commitment to finding the ‘perfect fit’, takes her across a variety of sectors, from Telecoms to Medical and Pharmaceutical – and everything in between!
Peter has a keen eye for detail and is highly skilled at discovering key client and candidate information for the purpose of achieving a great recruitment fit.
Peter holds a degree in Business and Management along with a Master’s in Strategy and Innovation from Maynooth University. During his studies and after graduation, Peter has honed strong negotiation and communication skill’s from his time in retail, sales, and account management.
His key areas of expertise are technical and general recruitment across a range of industries from IT, Telecoms, Construction, and Engineering. Peter is highly adept at dealing with candidates and clients alike and has received awards for his customer service skills over the course of his career.
Peter is also a keen sportsman and has played both golf and rugby at a high level.
Kevin’s vision and passion in recruitment is to find the best fit for both client and candidate alike.
Kevin holds a BA in Business & a BA in Business Management from Dublin Business School along with a decade of experience in both Retail and Business Operations in a managerial/leadership capacity. Throughout his career, he has recruited, worked alongside and led teams in various business settings from local SME’s right up to large Multi-nationals.
Highly experienced in people and team management, Kevin has led and coached people from various backgrounds to excel in their career and progress into more senior roles.
Since progressing into recruitment Kevin has developed and become highly proficient in volume and general recruitment across a range of industries. Kevin specialises in local and Pan-European recruitment of field professional’s across the entire Fixed Line Telecom’s sector. Along with this, Kevin is adept at sourcing top talent for senior roles in a variety of industries.
With 3 years’ experience in Recruitment, Stephen is adept at finding the right talent for companies.
Stephen holds a degree in Business Studies from Trinity College, Dublin as well as a Yellow Belt in Lean Six Sigma. He has 3 years’ experience within Recruitment. His key area of expertise is Wireless Telecoms Professional’s and high volume recruitment within the Utilities and Construction industries. Stephen is also highly adept at finding talented Engineering, Health and Safety as well as Management talent.
Stephen is a keen sportsman with All Ireland medals in Gaelic Football for Dublin at U18 and U21 level as well as appearances for the Dublin Senior team. Stephen is also an avid traveller having spent time in India, The Caribbean and the US!
Niall’s vision in any project is to deliver talent to an organisation to alleviate pressure and achieve results. How has he learned to do this?
Niall holds a BA in Business Studies & Human Resources, a Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt, specialist training in Aptitude and Psychometric testing and analysis along with a Black Belt in Online Recruitment Search. He has over a decade of experience in HR and Recruitment. Throughout his career, he has recruited and led recruitment teams for technical, high volume and executive search for SME’s right up to large multi-nationals.
An expert in recruitment, Niall has found thousands of job seekers their next career move whether as part of a one-off project with a small company or as part of a volume campaign with a blue-chip brand. Thousands of conversations, interviews, CV’s and stories have helped Niall become a specialist professional in dealing with job seekers and hiring managers alike to ensure that the right fit happens!