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#InsightsIn5: Will COVID-19 Change the Way We Work for GOOD?

The current pandemic is devastating lives, families, businesses not just in terms of the sick, the fatalities, the financial hardship, it is disrupting the entire world, nations, populations, the global economy, and business, but what will be the long term legacy of COVID-19?

It's a big question with far-reaching implications, and the longer it runs the more likely it is to change how we live and work, not just for the short term, but potentially permanently, and even, maybe for GOOD?

As organizations adapt through home-working and learn the impact upon their businesses, might this alter strategies around often expensive real estate, offices, maintenance, amenities? How will organizations accommodate a potentially more disparate workforce and offer a support structure that is inclusive and collaborative?


One company, Errand Solutions believes that they have part of that answer through their WorkXP-as-a-Service App, Luv Your Life.

LYLA provides employees, no matter where they are, access to employee services, benefits, support, health, and wellbeing, as well as solutions that support the work experience through a range of services. Access to specially negotiated deals, everything from insurance to preferential banking, from ordering food, gifts, flowers, and even booking errand runners to walk the dog, valet the car, or personal shopping.

The Cost of Business Travel

According to Business Wire, and the Runzheimer Cost of Business Travel Report, the average cost of a business trip in the United States in 2019 was $1,293 over 117 million business trips. Then, it's not just about the financial cost, but if each business trip represents, on average, 2.5 days from door to door, then, the same number of trips equates to 292.5 million business days a year.

Combined, the average cost per business trip is a whopping $2,793 and doesn't include the efficiencies created by an extra two and a half days at your desk and the productivity associated with that extra time.

Mute the Commute

The WORKTECH Academy and @Aramark WorkXP Report 2019, shares that the commute is often in the Top 3 frustrations of the work experience and a major consideration for employees to stay in their job, or even take a job in the first place.

CNBC's Make-It!, reports that today's roundtrip commute represents a high in Palmdale, CA of 85.4 minutes, closely followed by New York at 81.6 minutes. With a 250 day working year, that is as high as 356 hours a year, or over a 30-year career, over 1,300 days, that's 5 working years!

Imagine how reducing, or muting the commute could impact on the overall employee experience, productivity, efficiency, even happiness, engagement, and employee retention.

Collaborative Technologies

Granted, face to face meetings cannot be completely replaced but how will the current lockdown of workers across the nation, globe, make us realize that perhaps there are more efficient, more effective ways of doing business?

The technology has been around for a long time, everything from Facetime to enterprise platforms designed to make the experience more real, enhance collaboration, and make teams more efficient and effective.

According to Unified Communications, the Top 10 Kings of Collaboration include platforms such as Zoom, Poly, Blue Jeans, PGi (Global Meet), West (now Intrado), StarLeaf, Cisco Webex, Microsoft (Skype and Teams), GoTo (LogMeIn), and Google.

But given the size of the opportunity, then why has adoption of collaborative technology not being fully embraced?

Well, maybe its the fear of missing that face to face moment, that colleagues are making the trip and you don't want to miss out, or that it feels like the norm and that you just ought to?

Even prior to the current pandemic, more progressive organizations, especially in technology were embracing the possibilities of collaborative technologies, and this current situation is surely likely to accelerate that level of adoption.

Real Estate-as-a-Service

Then, think about the traditional real estate model. Large, often expensive real estate, potentially more underutilized than ever in this new world.

How can organizations mitigate their need for space and the associated expense, and at the same time elevate the human and work experience?

Companies like Convene provide a network of high-quality experiential co-working or dedicating workspaces in addition to meeting spaces and hospitality. WeWork offer is similar on a consume-as-you-go basis. There are many more companies globally offering a similar solution that provides organizations the opportunity to flex their real estate needs and create access to employees to smaller, more local hubs to where they live.

Human Experience

For companies like JLL, Human Experience has become a greater focus. As organizations grow to understand the importance of the overall proposition of the workplace and work experience, as it relates to an organization's ability to attract and retain the best and brightest talent, to turn spaces into places where people choose to be.

Whatever the range and combination of solutions, what is sure is that there is nothing constant in life except change and the Coronavirus pandemic, devastating as it may seem at the moment, maybe a catalyst that changes the way we live and the way we work into the future and maybe even for GOOD.

Contact 4xi Global Consulting for more information or to discuss your organization's future work experience strategies.

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