Work from Home: Digital technologies help a modern work culture to grow.

Google Hangout, Microsoft Teams, Webex and Zoom allow businesses to create an environment for collaborative work.

Work from Home: Digital technologies help a modern work culture to grow.

The norms of working and efficiency concepts have been dramatically modified overnight in most Indian organisations with the offices shifting to employee homes. This presents a new challenge for both workers and companies as working from home is an novel practice to which they are accustomed today.

Working from home has contributed to a major problem for HR and business managers as to how they can assess the effectiveness of 'unseen' workers and how they can empower the workers to fulfill their assigned responsibilities. While, on the one hand, the downsizing or use of robots is marketed as possibilities for some jobs, most managers are actually concerned with how to continue meeting their consumer obligations and assisting workers in making this happen.

Need is the mother of innovation and invention. Companies already seen applications embedded in cell phones and other devices that provide their managers with regular reports and data about the time workers spend on various projects, customer feedback, and thus compare team productivity in real time. Digital channels such as Google Hangout, Microsoft Teams, Webex and Zoom are some of the examples that enable organizations to create a shared working atmosphere for meetings and discussions, thereby retaining human contact and providing interaction with the organization.

Many companies in Europe and the US were conditioned to operate from home, as a result of which they had a robust cyber security infrastructure for accessing data and creating an environment beyond the firewall. Organizations that introduced cloud-based technologies for their main applications could move operations to homes quickly.

However, many Indian companies have to improve their data storage and protection systems, which have been forced to enforce work from home policy at short notice. Employees need to be alert about possible phishing attacks, fake emails or text messages from malicious actors who pose as their superiors requesting sensitive information.

Covid has sounded a wake-up call to companies already in the throes of digital transformation to make more improvements driven by a combination of widely available resources and some unique solutions. This has contributed to the importance of recognizing and redefining consumer expectations and learning to do more with less, generating new possibilities for cost savings and increasing efficiency in their operations.

As companies are trying to change their model and demonstrate flexibility in their approach, now is the period that workers need to be encouraged to realize that performance as described in the past will no longer be important and adjust to the new standard environment of new indicators for performance.

Along with ongoing connectivity and collaboration enabled by digital technologies, the goal should also be to allow workers to operate with greater trust, pace and resourcefulness in both the current and post-pandemic scenarios. Digital platforms have the ability to make the workers think and act together, thus co-developing a new organizational culture.