4.3 million people in the USA work from home at least half the time, according to Owl Labs. The pandemic first focused on health, but after 8 months of WFH for millions, we could be looking at an American shift in lifestyle. Consider that Millennials and Gen Z workers make up 38% of manpower now and by 2028 these two generations will hold 58% of the workforce. That’s an astounding number.
We have already seen a shift in the so-called “American dream” as companies adjust to the fact that employees aren’t interested in a ‘pat on the back’ from their boss or a ‘big paycheck,’ as much as they want to find enjoyment in their day-to-day and make a difference. Resourceful companies are listening and making adjustments now.
Eight to five has been a way of life for Americans and continuously changing and upgrading technology keeps us going, but we are combating high-turnover and burnout because of it. During my travels to Bali, I met other travelers who stated, “Oh Americans, you’re always working.” I was just as surprised that my Netherland traveler was able to stay for 30 days, as they were about me only being able to visit for 10. The entrepreneur part of me felt proud, but the millennial in me is begging to be known for more.
History shows that tragedy can be used to refine and reflect. Could this pandemic be the revolution we need? Can’t we have both a tremendous work ethic and the ability to work from a space that gives the freedom to cultivate a life that inspires, rather than burns us out?
Technology has the potential to provide the freedom and balance we crave, when used responsibly. Small businesses are twice as likely to hire full-time remote workers (Owl Labs). Speaking with a small business owner of COATS, Lynn Connor, has used this time to reflect on software offerings for staffing firms across the nation. COATS Staffing Software strategically created remote hiring capabilities that allows them to specifically serve their customers in this realm.
Digital over Traditional. COATS serves mid-sized staffing companies across the nation, each client hiring a couple hundred employees weekly. Current clients have requested demos as they are ready to embrace remote applications. Lynn has seen an uptick in sales based on their offerings of electronic onboarding, mobile online-applications, online job postings, and employee portals.
Pivot. Lynn commented “during the onset of COVID-19, we shifted advertising strategies to promote remote hiring capabilities on the website and enhance ease of use with drag and drop features.”
80/20. Internally, Lynn has received positive feedback from employees who would prefer the option to WFH permanently moving forward, with 20% interested in the ability to go in a few times a week. “Employees are still craving collaboration, especially new hires, so we are leaving the office open for them to utilize as needed, on their terms.”
True Diversity. With a software tailored to the staffing industry, we chatted about the benefits of remote hiring for local businesses. When clients are not limited to their geographical talent pool, they have the option to hire the best talent around the world - or at least in the same time zone.
Freedom in the workplace. Prior to the pandemic, I remember hearing how friends and colleagues were seeking out remote positions for two reasons.
WFH (Work-from-Home): Considered by some, the true American dream. Advancing their career while being present in home life. Plus, no commute lessens the expense and stress of the day-to-day.
WFA (Work-from-Anywhere): Those who are restless in one location can get up and go. Choose to be a true digital nomad and work without a permanent address or go abroad and embrace the expat life.
Both sound wonderful, romantic even, but how realistic are these options? 2020 is the perfect opportunity for you to decide if the digital-nomad life is for you. Consider what it entails, in the less insta-worthy moments, as well.
What’s your sustainable work style? You may find that you require structure to your day. Maybe you enjoy the rhythm of an 8 to 5 job, and unplugging at 5. Type A personalities that are organized and driven typically thrive in a WHF or WFA dynamic. Let’s face it, you determine what gets done each day and how much you can accomplish with Netflix in the background or your kids jumping into your zoom calls. Remote work is not for everyone, but it absolutely makes sense to give people the opportunity to decide what work style they thrive best in - personally and professionally. Many firms have found their employees exceeding their goals, sales are higher and client’s are providing more positive feedback and testimonials than was found in the typical brick and mortar setting.
Future Focused. As a travel advisor, I am always planning for the future. Our world will open back up and we will not be limited to our hometown, forever. Travel advisors exist for entrepreneurs, small businesses, and digital nomads just as much as they do for the bucket-list vacationer.
Melted&Moved offers a “high-touch” process, from insider knowledge on what hotels are offering from long-term stay rates to leveraging relationships for exclusive access and tailored experiences. By 2028, 73% of all departments will have remote workers. If you’re considering the work from anywhere option in the future, have a professional travel advisor in your corner to be sure you plan and execute accordingly. After all, you already have a full-time job. Let me do mine.