June 8, 2020
During this time of loneliness, most people are still accompanied by one useful tool: technology. Whether it is a computer, tablet or mobile device the use of technology has enabled the possibilities to continue on in our regular lives — just with a new spin on it. The connection of being together through screens, even if it may be overwhelming, has been one of the important factors in keeping people in their work offices or students in the classroom. Life may not ever go back to the way we once viewed normal, but this may be the start to a revolutionary time for the future of classes and jobs.
Students at Michigan State University were switched to online classes, just like the majority of universities around the nation. However, this did not just stop at colleges. Kids in elementary and middle schools were also abruptly disrupted in their daily lives attending class. This gave students, teachers and parents a new perspective on the way schools can run even when not in the class. This new defying way of remote schooling trickled into the workforce.
Big corporations, such as Twitter and Facebook, have publicly announced they will be continuing their work online forever. Pandemic or not, they have decided to continue working from home.
The New York Times writes, “Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, told workers during a staff meeting that was livestreamed on his Facebook page that within a decade as many as half of the company’s more than 48,000 employees would work from home.” All these employees, however, may be able to choose the remote work lifestyle, but it seems there is a catch: their salaries will decrease. According to Forbes “44% of us would take a 10% pay cut to get the same privilege” due to working remotely.
This could make sense when free transportation, food, and building utilities of their massive company buildings around the globe won’t be a necessity anymore. According to Forbes, “not everyone agrees” there should be these pay cuts amongst any of their employees. This trickle of events also came to the attention of Twitter’s corporation where they too decided as a whole to work remotely, forever.
Forbes writer Dana Brownlee mentions in her article, “There’s a world of difference between making something work temporarily because you have to and choosing it as your permanent environment.” The move from in-person to online has become a possibility due to the inclusion of technology and companies offering free internet services and subscriptions during this time. Yet, these companies have other things at hand that they are discussing: team collaborations.
Facing teamwork and collaborations within a company can become a challenge when the work environment is now changed to your own home. Zoom and other virtual hangouts make it easier to come together when being at home, but will the future be run by Zoom? Will there be a way to make this way of life easier for the companies and employees?
There are psychological effects that occur when not being able to interact with other people. During a pandemic this way of working has helped tremendously, however, is it safe to keep it forever? It seems that the future is filled with unknown answers to all types of questions. According to CNBC News, working in an office in the near to distant future could be looked upon as a symbol of status.
“Corporate headquarters may become a status symbol for the companies that still have the budget and a workforce big enough to warrant pricey real estate in a major city…Job seekers may consider it a draw to work for a company with a physical location, which could boost brand awareness and overall influence within the industry.”
This pandemic has changed our way of life and has an evolving impact that will be made in the future of the workforce. Implementing task forces to come into work places for on-the-job medical screening may also become a future normality — especially in the future months ahead as work and businesses return to in-person. The nine to five work hours could be a memory of the past. This is due to our daily schedules being changed and altered to be able to work on our own demand and desire. Needing to clock-in and out may be something also left in the past for corporate jobs as long as the work gets done in time.
Transitions and adapting to change may not always be easy, but it is possible. This has been seen in this time of uncertainty and anxiety. Corporations continue to work and spread their message all from their own homes. This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the potential and futuristic possibilities that will be in the near future when it comes to the workforce. There is a new and redefined perspective when it comes to working from home and permanently switching to remote positions.
Jaclyn Krizanic is a senior studying Professional Writing and minoring in Graphic Design. Jaclyn plans to apply her knowledge and skill sets she has gained from her major into her current, future and professional work. Jaclyn loves to write poetry and inspires to publish a book of poems and short stories upon her graduation.