Is Australia Prepared for Coronavirus Fuelled Shift to Remote Work?

In Marketing We Trust has led a remote workforce since its beginning in 2013. The agency believes that Australia is not prepared for the revolution of remote work.

Australian companies are not prepared for the shift to remote work. Business leaders are having to think creatively to adapt as coronavirus is fuelling a shift to more remote work across the globe.

Maria Ursente, People Operations Manager said:

I don’t think most companies are prepared. We’re seeing it begin to impact the world and health authorities are recommending employers review their remote work policies. There are huge implications from legal and HR standpoints in terms of doing the best thing for employees.

Companies Encouraging Employees to Work From Home

Large companies around the world are encouraging their employees to work from home. Twitter asked it’s 5000 employees to work remotely if able, Google shut down their offices in Ireland for a day with employees working from home and other companies including IBM and Sony followed suit.

China Daily reported that more than half of workers in Beijing started working from home after the Lunar New Year break. Time magazine dubbed it “the world’s largest work-from-home experiment”.

While Coronavirus may be pushing more companies to shift to a more distributed team, Twitter highlighted the fact that they have been developing ways to work from home for some time.

Maria Ursente, People Operations Manager, In Marketing We Trust stated:

Obviously, you can’t require an employee to take family and medical leave if they don’t need it. That’s why employers need to take a close look at their flexible work policies and start amending to ensure their employees and their families are as safe as possible. Many employees refuse to take time off when unwell for fear of not getting promoted or looking slack. This needs to change and offering a flexible, remote working solution could combat that.

How to Prepare for the Global Shift to Remote Work

The shift to a more remote workforce is nothing new but many companies behind the times are struggling to keep up with the recommendations, meaning coronavirus has the potential to bring about lasting workplace change.

In a recent post on How to Prepare for the Global Shift to Remote Work, Frederic Chanut, Managing Director of In Marketing We Trust stated:

As a service provider our most important assets are expertise and experience, meaning our people. Based in over 15 countries our employees are recruited based on their abilities – not drive time to the office. That’s why we have a more skilled digital marketing team, because by not factoring in location, we’re able to choose the best people for the job.

One of the tips the agency gave was for managers of remote teams to focus more heavily on quality communication.

Frederic Chanut, Managing Director, In Marketing We Trust commented:

I find communication is overused these days. Communication breakdown is blamed for most of our woes. The truth is we judge others by their actions. Yet, we judge ourselves based on our intentions.

Quality communication matters greatly when dealing with a remote team setup. You realise how much can be lost when you are not sitting next to the people you work with. The subtlety of tone or the lack of context on both the sender/receiver can really make matters worse. When the topic is of importance or likely to be misinterpreted, call your teammates, don’t send them a slack message. This is especially important for fellow millennials. I know it feels uncomfortable at first but your voice, your tone and emotions beat hands down any well crafted message.

If you don’t currently have a work from home policy in place, you’re going to need one. The shift to a more remote workforce isn’t going to go away when the panic dies down. There’s a global movement to more flexible work arrangements, including working from home. Don’t get left behind.

About In Marketing We Trust

In Marketing We Trust is a global digital marketing agency, specialising in SEO, PPC, CRO and Analytics for brands that are serious about growth.