Working from home is here to stay. Companies must ensure that the employees are happy and motivated, provide furniture for home offices, and provide proper (and digital) tools that ensure an efficient working day.
It is precisely the last point concerning digital tools that I focus on in this blog post. For cooperation and efficiency to be maintained while a large part of the company’s employees works at home, digital tools that can both tie the home workers together, and also ensure efficient workflows for both employee and the company are required. And in the end, this is the company’s responsibility!
Working from home is more popular than ever
Dansk Industri has conducted a survey among 230 companies, showing that eight out of ten companies are open to the idea of increasing how much employees can work from home. It is only three percent want to reduce the amount of time employees can work remotely. It, therefore, seems reasonable to conclude that working from home, as mentioned, is here to stay. We can also call it hybrid work, flexible work, etc. The common feature is that employees are not physically present in the office.
We also notice the increasing popularity of remote work. In Visma Acubiz, employees have never worked as much at home as they do at the moment. Of course, except for during lockdowns. Is an increase in the amount of time we work from home good or bad? Well, we manage to deliver the best financial results ever. So it must not be that bad.
We would not call it a direct result of remote work, but at least it has not lowered productivity. This matches very well with Dansk Industri’s report, which shows that 73% of companies have experienced increased or unchanged productivity. Only three percent have experienced a decline in productivity.
We benefit from the fact that all our employees can work from home. All our data is located securely in the cloud, so the employees only need their computers to work wherever they want. However, there is always a place in the office for those colleagues who do not want to work at home.
One thing is certain. The development is here. It does not seem to be able to be stopped. Therefore, companies need to focus on creating the best framework conditions for the employees’ remote work to succeed and be carried out in the best possible way.
Digital tools can facilitate workflows and reduce frustration
We must not equate working remotely with increased productivity and happy employees. Companies need to work on creating a healthy balance.
A negative consequence of working from home can be a sense of weakened community and loss of social relationships. The whole social aspect is a topic in itself. I will get back to that in a separate blog post. At Visma Acubiz, we are very conscious of this, which is why we have increased the amount and frequency of various employee events.
Professionally, it can also be frustrating not being able to ask a quick question to a colleague face to face. It can also be frustrating to carry out certain workflows if they are difficult and require help from colleagues. Certain processes in some companies are still manual, which only further complicates collaboration.
Let’s use ourselves as an example:
In the old days, handling employees’ expenses was manual, paper-based, and consisted of brown envelopes being exchanged between employees and the finance department. This kind of process is still being carried out in some companies today.
Scanning receipts, filling in and printing excel sheets, and transporting it all to the manager and the finance department is a difficult and time-consuming process. Especially if you are in the home office – because then it has to be postponed until the next time you are in the office.
Visma Acubiz digitizes and automates the entire process around expenses – from transactions to bookkeeping. Employees simply need to use their phones to register an expense. Our customers tell us that Acubiz makes the process around expenses easier for their users. At the same time, both they and the finance department save time.
Examples illustrate how we provide a digital tool that does not care whether you work from home or in the office. The work is handled just as efficiently regardless. These are exactly the digital tools that the company must implement.
We are far from the only company that makes everyday life easier for home-based employees. Fortunately, many fantastic apps ensure a more efficient working day in the home office. We fall into the category “tools that ensure efficient workflows for employees” while the category “tools that bind home workers together” consists of, for example, Slack and Zoom.
Work efficiently wherever you are
To ensure the best framework conditions for the employee to work successfully in the home office, it is a good idea to measure employee satisfaction regularly. At Visma, we use Peakon from Workday, which is a fantastic tool to give us a sense of what we can do even better. Not only concerning creating the best framework for the employee to perform as best as possible but also checking in on the employees’ well-being, commitment, etc. This is especially important when all our employees are not physically in the office as we have been used to in the past.
To answer the question in this blog post’s title; you must make the right digital tools available to your employees because working from home is becoming increasingly popular in Danish companies. This means that the employee must be able to handle all parts of their work – regardless of whether it takes place at home or in the company’s office.