For many businesses and staff across the UK, the coronavirus pandemic has been one of the most significant changes in our lives. The impact for many of the new ways we work will be permanent, even though one day life will return to normal. Of course, some aspects of our working habits will go back to normal. However, many still stay for the future and become the ‘new normal’.
It’s no secret that in the UK, we are switching to an ‘online culture’ were more of us are shopping or buying services online. Online purchasing and buying services online were growing before the pandemic started. Nonetheless, this will fuel online growth even further as many have been going online to keep themselves safe during the pandemic, or because of the closure of physical shops during the lockdown. Therefore, this has introduced many people to the internet, who may not have used it before.
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For years we have seemed to have stuck to the same routine of going to a traditional place of work, e.g. the office. The main reason why is that employers thought that bringing the workforce into one building would help improve productivity levels. Despite this argument, since employees have been remote working due to coronavirus - they have found implementing the right technology (such as Zoom) and new structures, has meant productivity doesn’t have to fall in the workplace.
The massive advantage of home working has meant the days of long commutes and 1-hour meetings aboard can be done differently and more cost-effectively for the employer. We could see a work/life balance transformation for employees over the next decade, from what we have learnt through this pandemic.
Business attire in the workplace has already changed massively throughout the last decade. Over the last decade, we have been full business attire has been replaced with an open collar-shirt. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have got even more comfortable in our everyday attire while working from home. Full business attire mainly seems to be used for corporate meetings, and in some industries such as tech, many already come into work in shorts and flip-flops!
For those still heading into the workplace, it will have changed dramatically with many customer-facing businesses requiring Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for their everyday work, spending most of their day in isolation gowns that are disposable. For example, they will likely have to wear face masks or shields, or even protective gloves such as those provided by companies alike to Unigloves. This would be put in place to ensure that all parties (staff and customers alike) will have effective protection from the virus. Hopefully, if companies ensure that there are strict rules on the PPE that needs to be worn at all times, the virus can be fought more quickly and efficiently.
Businesses had to adapt to employees working from home and still required ways to communicate effectively with both employees and clients. Software such as Zoom, Skype and Hangouts, are used more often than ever before.
Video calling using a piece of software like Zoom is one of the most significant changes in the workplace will be carried on even after the pandemic. No longer does every meeting require multiple hour-long flights, hotels and other expenses that come with that. It’s now the new normal to connect with anyone across the world, from just using a compatible device.