Some companies allow Work from Home, others go for hybrid model
Many people prefer to work from home if given a choice between office work and remote work. Offices are coming up with ways to embrace a hybrid work approach.
Umadevi Rajan, an employee at Wipro, Bengaluru, informed The Observer: “I am happy to work from home. It is easier this way. I like the flexibility. It saves time and money spent on daily commute. I can even structure my days as I like.”
“We haven’t been called to the office yet. We are equally productive at home. We still need to finish our work before the deadline. Our company closely monitors everything. Each issue is dealt with utmost care and prudence,” she added.
Employees said they wish to work remotely more often. It is also convenient for parents who can then work whilst catering to their child’s needs.
Reshab Shaw, an employee at Infosys, Mumbai said: “I believe a hybrid model of work is in the best interest of all. I would really relish working from home on some days. I could sleep more, focus on my hobbies and spend more time with my family. All this would help instil more work-life balance.”
The pandemic has severely hindered work in some places.
“I have started going back to work now. The pandemic impacted our productivity as our work demands team effort which was not feasible during the pandemic,” Shaw added.
Many companies have realised the importance of remote work and employees’ preference for it. They are adapting to the new situation.
Shiv Kumar, a sales executive at FuGenX– Mobile App Development Company, said: “We have started calling our employees to work. We are also planning to come up with a hybrid model of work wherein some days we allow our employees to work from home.”
Naveen Sharma, a general manager at Infosys, Bengaulru, said: “We are not calling anyone to work. Our employees are still working from home. There was a consensus among the entire staff wherein everyone favoured work from home.”
However, work from home is not accessible to all.
Nishit Arora, owner of Canyon Belts, which manufactures and distributes belts and padlocks, said:“I employ accountants, managers, labourers and helpers. We would have loved to work from home had our work permitted us to do so. Our job demands us to be present at the office. If a company provides service, they can opt for work from home. But if they manufacture consumer goods, they need to be present on-site to ensure that goods have been despatched and quality has been checked. We suffered huge losses during lockdowns. Our factory had to shut down. We have since been working hard to recover the loss.”
A hybrid model, wherein some days involve remote work while other days have to be spent at the workplace, can be an attainable alternative.
Braja Kishor Pradha, vice-president of Aahwahan Foundation, an NGO that provides employment to economically weaker sections of society, explained: “I don’t think every industry can incorporate work from home in their curriculum. Each firm has its own limitations. Forty to 50 percent of employees can work from home, and the rest can go work on-site. It mainly depends on the nature of the work.”
Many companies decided to make their employees work from home a week before a nationwide lockdown in India commenced on March 25, 2020. They curtailed their operations in view of rising Covid-19 cases in the country. Some even conducted day-long trials and allowed a buffer of two to three days so that issues pertaining to availability of business-related data, connectivity and infrastructure could be identified.