Productivity has Increased During the Pandemic Due to Remote Work
The world as we knew it changed drastically in March 2020. It forced companies to close their doors to the public and have their employees work from home for the foreseeable future. This sudden change in working environments was necessary for businesses to stay afloat, but it was assumed it would bring with it a significant dip in workplace productivity. Not only was there a worldwide pandemic affecting the mental wellbeing of employees everywhere, but suddenly entire workforces were being forced to work in brand new (and often makeshift) environments while simultaneously dealing with things like homeschooling their children and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
To the surprise of many, this drastic dip in workplace productivity hasn’t actually taken place in any meaningful way. In fact, many companies have found the exact opposite - remote work productivity has actually increased during the pandemic.
Workplace productivity increasing due to remote work
Back in March, remote work was a new concept for millions of employees everywhere. Creating your own home office, dealing with more distractions, being away from your team and working without direct supervision led most to believe that working from home would be detrimental to productivity. Employers and managers suddenly found themselves needing a way to check in with employees and monitor their progress without smothering or overworking employees. Employees, too, had to deal with a combination of pandemic-related stress and familial responsibilities. All these factors affecting employees and employers alike made it seem as though it would be too much to overcome, leading businesses to expect the worst.
In actuality, the switch to working from home has been shown to keep productivity steady, with many businesses finding that the new remote work arrangements had actually led to an increase in employee productivity. Just a few of the companies experiencing increased productivity during the pandemic include Cisco, Eventbrite, Deutsche Bank, Splunk, and Chegg, all of which have reported a number of surprising benefits to hosting a remote workforce. From increased customer service numbers and enhanced employee collaboration to completing projects far ahead of deadlines, there have been many surprising improvements during these unprecedented times.
Employees were no longer exhausted from long commutes, didn’t have to deal with distractions in the workplace, and could now focus on the task at hand in a more flexible environment. Employers, too, have discovered that lengthy processes like meetings and regular check-ins weren’t actually as important as they once thought, as business continues to thrive without these things. Internal data from Prodoscore also supports the argument that employees are in fact more productive now, showing a 47% increase in daily productivity in March/April of 2020 versus the same time last year.
The best is yet to come
One of the major takeaways from these surprising findings is that the improvements are coming at a time when employees are dealing with pandemic-related stress, acclimating to new work environments, schedules and processes, and even dealing with things like homeschooling and looking after their children. Despite the deck stacked seemingly against remote employees, many companies have found increased productivity - if this is what it’s like during stressful and unprecedented times, what’s going to happen when things begin to return to normal?
Many employees will continue working from home for the foreseeable future due to ongoing concerns about COVID-19, but will no longer be forced to deal with the stressors and responsibilities sparked by the pandemic. Without these distractions present, it’s safe to assume that remote productivity, collaboration, and efficiency will only continue to increase. In the meantime, businesses will have the time needed to strengthen remote working processes, increase adoption of workplace cloud solutions, and develop effective onboarding strategies for new remote employees, setting employers and employees up for long term success.
Staying on top of remote employee productivity
With businesses settling into remote, now is the time to get in on the improvements in productivity being experienced by companies around the country. Staying on top of remote employee productivity is easier now than ever before, allowing you to alleviate worries and redirect your focus to coaching, replicating top performers, and improving revenue results.
Business insights tools like Prodoscore are the perfect way to discreetly monitor employee productivity, offering critical insight into how your team members are using workplace technology including CRM solutions, office productivity suites, communications, and more. Prodoscore uses AI and machine learning to offer real-time insight into employee productivity in the form of an easy-to-understand Productivity Score™, allowing you to better understand how employees are performing, identify at-risk workers and new opportunities for growth, and improve adoption of workplace cloud solutions.
Despite previous worries from employers and employees alike, working from home during these unprecedented times might actually be one of the best things to ever happen to your business. Improved productivity, enhanced collaboration, and increased revenue are just some of the surprising benefits being discovered by businesses around the country - and that’s with the stress and added responsibilities associated with the pandemic. Once things have returned to normal and employees are no longer dealing with pandemic stress, the potential of your remote workforce is limitless.