Obviously, a pandemic has done its part to push us out of the office and keep us out for the majority of a year. COVID-19 made us stuck in our houses. But it’s not too optimistic or unrealistic to be thinking about the day and age when COVID, thankfully and finally, goes away.
What will that mean for returning to the office? Is it a given that it’s going to happen? Or that it will be mandatory? We see a future in which there will be a lot more independence from the office, but let’s dig in and explore what that means for workers and employers alike.
Will we be able to literally go anywhere for work? In some instances, the answer is clear: Yes. Before COVID-19, some workers were going anywhere they wanted to in order to do work – not down the street but out of the country. With a laptop and a reliable Internet connection, what more did they need? Now, we should expect more people like them to expand the borders of work beyond anything they ever were before.
For years I was predicting that many people were going to move to other countries (for reasons ranging from the cost of living to lifestyle) and work remotely. There was just one problem: The bandwidth to do so wasn’t there. That’s rapidly changing, however. We recently wrote about increased bandwidth and the possibility that speed and stability represent more robust communication globally, leading to potentially more remote work. Perhaps even a lot more of it.
Once businesses have a working from home policy in place that’s firmly and uniformly established, we should see more people doing the vast majority of their work in other locations besides the traditional office setting. Maybe that’s not for everybody, but for the ones who can work remotely, the next question is: Where should you live?
Don’t be surprised to see substantial changes in lifestyles that impact whether people return to the office. A 20-something social butterfly may want to congregate closer to the city, but a young couple with a new baby may be ready to move out to a 2,500 square foot house in suburbia. Others still will favor businesses in Manhattan, Chicago, London, San Francisco or Silicon Valley. And many of those in hi-tech careers won’t feel the need to continually communicate with each other in person as much as other people – coders don’t need to be in the office every day. Put them in any room of their choosing and slide pizza underneath the door. They’ll be good to go.
Talman Advantage #10: Stronger Negotiating Power On Your Side
The terms of your employment aren’t to be taken lightly. With our 30+ years of industry expertise, Roy Talman & Associates has a keen eye for detail during negotiations. In fact, if the help of an attorney is required for this purpose, we can suggest one. Can any recruiter offer the same result?
Don’t wonder about the outcome. Stand with a recruiter who has the track record to negotiate firmly in your favor. Make the right call and talk to Talman first.
Redefining The Rules Of Remote
However, let’s not stop at the local area for remote work. What if you’re Facebook, in Silicon Valley and one of your people has fallen in love with the Chicago area during a recent trip? If that’s the case, the next thing is you need to figure out how you’re going to pay people. In Silicon Valley, you’re paying a high earner $400,000 a year. Not to mention you’re paying California income tax, which could be 10% to 12%. Well, if that worker of yours isn’t physically in California but still working for Facebook, you at Facebook may be in the position to say, “You really don’t work for us in Silicon Valley, do you? You work for us and since you’re in Chicago, we’ll pay you less, but the taxes that you’ll pay in Chicago are much less too.”
This development may create a downtrend for high priced locales like San Francisco and Manhattan as well as other downtown areas. The trade-off in downtown living was being close to nightlife and other cultural advantages. And, in many cases, it was close to work. Now, if someone isn’t walking to work and doesn’t need to be in the office every day, their housing cost might drop in half or less if the individual only needs to visit the office once a week. That could have a significant impact.
In an event like the scenario we’re outlining, how will society change? We know that while COVID is transitory and we might be over it within six or eight months, the way the society is going to start changing might be much more permanent. That might mean that you have all kinds of components to rearrange in terms of how people live and work. If you have gigabit Internet, there may be many remote (as in out of the state or country) locations that can accommodate people pushing these boundaries. Yes, some workers really could be able to have their cake and eat it too. The notion of proximity to work as we know it may change and the daily “commute” with it. As long as technology continues to evolve and improve, what does it matter where you live and work as much?
The pace of technology accelerates us into a future where workers can be independent of locations. People can decide on their lifestyle preference, cost of living, jobs climate, city infrastructure and more. You don’t need 5,000 people in the same building, much like Apple or other large companies have. All you need is a good system setup with the latest technology to communicate with the rest of the organization. Suddenly, you’ve just replicated the office interaction and can do so just about anywhere.
We can be independent in many ways, but now, more than ever, businesses need to build upon their strategic partnerships and resources to maintain a level of consistency in an evolved landscape. If your people will be working from anywhere and you would like to hire specific high-level individuals in a technical capacity, how will your process align? Even if it isn’t drastically changed, having a trusted partner in recruiting couldn’t be more valuable right now.
That’s why you should always Talk To Talman First. As your company transforms to this “new normal,” count on Roy Talman & Associates’ renowned reputation to identify the best of the best technical talent so that you have only the most passionate and prepared individuals in front of you when the time comes. No matter what world we’re living in, that powerful outcome remains the same in your favor.