Key Workplace Shifts: Our New Reality

By: First Union


Key Workplace Shifts: Our New Reality

What the events of the past couple of months have shown us among many other things, is that numerous companies simply weren't prepared for the abrupt shift to remote work among other such changes. Platforms and systems weren't in place to ensure that the experience of moving workers to offsite locations was a seamless one. Consequently, what so many small businesses ended up with were team members scattered, not having the right tools and technology at their disposal, and people in general feeling lost and insecure regarding the future of the company and their jobs.

Lesson learned! And that is why many organizations are taking steps now to make sure that should we have to confront something like this pandemic again, this time they will be ready to tackle the challenges. Below are a few things companies can start integrating/practicing to help avoid greater difficulties in the future.

1. Reassess your workplace environment. Not only in terms of health and sanitation issues—as addressing those types of things should now be a given—but also make sure your systems and technology are updated. We have seen how critical video conferencing has become. Does your office have access to updated technological tools? Employees should also be equipped with devices, laptops, and other such items so that should a remote work situation arise, they can maintain their efficiency and stay on task.

2. Boost your online presence. Ecommerce is going to become the new norm as we move out of this situation. With shoppers more hesitant to come into brick and mortar stores, companies are going to have to up their digital game. Is your business currently selling products/services online? What percentage of sales come from your website or app? These are key questions that you will need to address as eCommerce continues to expand.

3. Be remote work-ready. For some companies shifting to a distributed workforce wasn't difficult, as this was already part of their business model. For others, however, the move to off-site working was challenging to say the least. We now understand what a couple potentially happen during a period of crisis. Take this knowledge and use it to prepare for the next time. Ensure that all team members are comfortable working remotely. And again, integrate the necessary tools and platforms to facilitate not only meetings but day to day operations as well.

4. Respond to workers accordingly. How you engage your employees are likely going to have to adapt to a post-pandemic world. It is going to be critical moving forward to genuinely interact with your team, take the time to listen to their concerns, and make sure that morale stays high.

What we have gone through has been difficult—of course, that's putting it lightly. But there are takeaways here as far as what we can do better should such a circumstance occur again. If you need working capital to purchase updated technology or to enhance your online selling efforts, First Union Lending is here to help! Call today and let's get started!

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