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Remote Work – What are the lessons and what does the future hold?

business meeting distance

During 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many previously office-based employees to begin to work from home.

Whilst working remotely is seen by some as a temporary measure, others suggest that this will likely become the norm in the future. Tech organisations long ago made this transition for numerous reasons including but not limited to, cost savings and reduced environmental impact.

However, for many, there is a stigma to remote work that seems to bubble under the surface of this new norm. According to PharmaRelations’ CEO, Fredrik Anjou, conversations with candidates and customers alike this past ten months regarding this subject indicate that there are variations in how the life sciences community has experienced this change of work practice.

“Companies must take the time to assess the impacts of remote work and how their employees really feel about the experience and perhaps more importantly their expectations post-Corona.”

“To ignore the opinions of employees, especially given we already have a skill shortage in this industry, is potentially risky from both a retention perspective but also from the employer value proposition to the external market,” says Anjou. “Companies must take the time to assess the impacts of remote work and how their employees really feel about the experience and perhaps more importantly their expectations post-Corona.”

Interesting statistics

A recent survey conducted by PharmaRelations of professionals working in the life sciences industry in the Nordics has revealed some interesting statistics.

The survey participants are mostly satisfied regarding the ways in which their company and manager have enabled remote working and the tools provided to support them. 84.8% feel that both their company and manager have been accepting and encouraging towards them working remotely.

“91.4% of people indicating that the balance of working from both home and office will be important for them in the future.”

Perhaps the most notable results relate to the future of remote work, with 91.4% of people indicating that the balance of working from both home and office will be important for them in the future. Furthermore, 62.7% of those surveyed show that the existence of a remote work policy would impact their decision to join a new company in the future, 29.5% that it would not impact their decision. Last but by no means least 42.4% of those surveyed would consider leaving their company post-COVID if not allowed to continue to work remotely.

“Last but by no means least 42.4% of those surveyed would consider leaving their company post-COVID if not allowed to continue to work remotely.”

Whilst we wait anxiously by the sidelines for vaccines to take effect, for economies to reopen and for life to return to some form of normality, the structural shift in terms of where work takes place has already happened and is probably here to stay.

For further information regarding the survey contact Claire Wharton, Sr. Recruitment Manager, PharmaRelations: claire.wharton@pharmarelations.se.

Photo: iStock