Is the nine-to-five workday still feasible? For some companies and some people, sure.
But at an accelerated pace, COVID-19 has altered how, where and when we work. It has also proven why the end of the nine-to-five workday may work better for companies and their employees in our climate — and beyond.
Here are six reasons your company should consider doing away with 9 to 5:
There’s Flexibility Like Never Before
Many organizations had no choice but to shift a remote workforce. That in itself shows the power of agility. Since then, employers have become more aware of the mounting responsibilities (and uncertainties) that working from home amid a pandemic brings. And therefore, they have become more accommodating of changing work schedules. They get it. They must accommodate the needs of their employees’ as well as their families.
There’s Productivity Like Never Before
According to a Citrix study, in April 2020 more than half of all countries worldwide said their productivity levels were the same or higher. That number includes more than two-thirds of the U.S. (69 percent). Employees are working more frequently in the morning and evening hours, as well as weekends — well outside the 9 to 5 bubble.
There’s Autonomy Like Never Before
We’ve all enjoying working without a manager ‘seeing’ our every move. This doesn’t mean you work less. It does not mean you put in less effort.
But it does mean you can take charge in how you operate when working from home. It means you can do so without feeling like someone is watching or micromanaging. And underscores you can have agency — and still be productive. This autonomy helps build better working relationships between managers and employees. Most importantly, it builds trust.
There’s Technology Like Never Before
We are using emojis as shorthand communications tools. We’re learning how to communicate virtually through Zoom. Seemingly each day, we’re exploring different tech and communication channels. In real-time, we’re building a remote culture while learning new skills.
And with each passing day, we’re only getting better at it.
There’s Empathy Like Never Before
According to Microsoft, 62% surveyed for its latest Work Trend Index Report said they now feel more empathetic toward their colleagues. The key factor: They now have a better view of life at home via video calls.
From the natural interruptions of WFH to the issues of internet connectivity or bandwidth, we are working together differently. We’re getting to know each other even better. Because we’re human, we’re even bring fun into the workday. Children and pets interrupt video calls. We take calls in our pajamas. And colorful filters and a picture in the video frame are common occurrences in Zoom meetings.
There’s Perspective Like Never Before
The nine-to-five workday isn’t everything anymore. Why? Because there’s more to just staying stuck inside an office. There’s a new freedom in thinking about how we want to approach work where work-life balance is possible. Sharper focus. Less commute/travel time. More exercise. Family time.
Life — not just work.
Maybe the Nine-to-Five Workday is Done
And likely, there will continue to be a blend of remote with on-site work. After all, for many members of the workforce the nine-to-five workday just won’t cut it anymore.
That’s more than a good HR strategy. It’s a great plan for our next normal. And a better life.