What do you think is an essential work environment? Some would say that you need a desk, comfortable chairs, and everything to be kept ergonomically to glue us in our seats. But the millennial shift has brought about a change in this as well, a bed and a laptop that is what a basic workstation looks like today. With an increase in the variety of jobs and a higher need for professionals at a flexible cost, the work has shifted from traditional office environments to our very homes. But working from home or telecommuting has major negative connotations to it, the major one being that it reduces productivity.
Though by definition productivity means the measurement of the rate of output, in modern times it is considered as producing more output in less time. But before we comment on what is better, let’s take a look at how productivity as a concept was developed. This term was first introduced in the agriculture sector in the late 1700s. Productivity was a measure of production and consumption of crop, this was important as in those days the rural population outnumbered the ones in urban areas. As time progressed the term took new meaning, the industrial revolution needed more and more development and people started to find better practices to increase production at a rapid scale. Then in 1913, Ford unveils his revolutionary assembly line, this improved production drastically and helped in producing more in less time.
As world war was right around the corner, countries such as the US majorly benefitted from increasing productivity, their GDP improved in 1939, amidst the great depression and a recession as well. Now lets fast forward to 1970, the year that witnessed the arrival of the internet, it now became imperative to utilize technology to make work more convenient— this, in turn, helped reducing work efforts and improving overall results. In 1990 Microsoft unveiled the first set of management solutions, this gave rise to the productivity solution industry. Over the years we have seen many improvements and innovations, Google which optimized search, calendar links, phones, virtual reminders, software and now AI.
With so many tools why do we still need to work in a fixed position? One major reason is oversight, in a traditional workplace, they try to get the maximum out of the employees. But this need not mean that they are working for the entirety of their 8 -9-hour shift, research shows that in an 8 hr shift a person is productive for 2 hours and 53 mins. So this just means that companies pay for the building, workstations, amenities and other utilities — all this for 18 hours of productivity on an average 6 day work week.
Now let us take a look at how telecommuting became a trend and has its unique sector now. The onset of the 2008 recession saw millions lose their jobs, with markets down companies wanted to find cost-effective ways to get work done, people started taking freelance work to sustain and to improve their financial position— this was the beginning of the Gig Economy. More skilled professionals started taking up jobs based on temporary contracted works. The gig economy was always there, but it was only perceptible recently. The idea of working with more clients and being able to select who you can work with encouraged them to follow the practice even more. This trend coerced companies to start telecommuting, research shows that people willingly worked 40 hours a week as opposed to on-site workers.
Sure there are pros and cons to both sides, but in terms of productivity, the modern millennial way seems far better than past ways. This is where companies like Yovza come in, construction industries run on time-bound targets, these practices would save the companies up to 70% of their time and money. They provide approval workflow management tools that solve the challenges of a traditional man-made chain of command and human errors. As a company culture, they encourage remote working and believe in getting the job done at all costs. The tools could simplify complex challenges faced by the industry and also improve work-life balance which we all strive for today.
It is clear that in the future, work culture will shift to telecommuting, the choice is ours whether we choose to move ahead in time or regress and stick to our old ways.