4 Ways COVID-19 Could Permanently Alter Modern Workplaces

It is no news that Corona virus today has influenced several aspects of our lives, some even permanently. Naturally then, it has also greatly changed the way businesses operates. Talking on a macro level, enterprises have been compelled to divert a good share of funds toward hygiene and now take this aspect into account much more seriously than before. With compulsory face masks, better office ventilation, staggered seating and the stress on using ergonomic office furniture, employee health has suddenly bagged the front row. Is this a lasting new change or a trend that will soon fade out - is for us to wait and watch. But right now, things look poised for a change. At HNI India, there are 4 workplace aspects we think might experience irreversible change during and even post the COVID-19 pandemic.

  1. Significant developments in practicing health & safety standards

Before you punch in, before you even enter the premises, you are confronted by the security guard who points a gun straight to your forehead or sometimes your wrists. Only this time, the gun is a harmless temperature sensor and the process is just a usual pre-login. A slight rise above normal body temperature, you won’t even be allowed further. While this process, in general, may not sound very appealing to all, it is indeed a great buffer to protect all inhabitants of that place from any kinds of viral, not just Covid-19. Furthermore, sanitizers parked strategically, toiletries refilled more frequently, desks cleaned more fervently and coffee cups washed more thoroughly will become a mandatory daily ritual. All these hygienic habits would be so embedded into our subconscious that it might become hard to completely do away with all of these.

  1. High Demand for Work from Home Services

Working from home which was once a privilege of a few has become a headache of the lot. What started of as fun activity is now nothing more than a dull task. However, we think that once offices start fully functioning and work from home loses its status of ‘compulsion’, the negativity around it would diminish, giving it back its lost glory. In fact, having experienced the possibility of efficiently working from home, a more global workplace might demand full time resources to work for them in the absence of a local office. Many companies have already started utilizing the potential of remote working for a few departments wherever possible. While this trend certainly won’t replace office working, it would surely narrow down to a niche of its own. As per a study by the global workplace analytics, 25% - 30% of the workforce will be working from home multiple days a week by the end of 2021. This essentially means that a home office might occupy a permanent space in your residence. So, make sure you have a home office desk ready as you open up your room for global opportunities!

  1. Heavy reliance on technology

Mobile technologies are playing a significant role in this area. GPS and Bluetooth, which before helped us find our way through traffic or get a seat at that new restaurant can be used to track the spread of COVID through the community. At work, Managers can get online notifications to help identify ‘pinch points’ or other spatial or process challenges in the workplace. In case of large offices, users can be directed to common rooms that currently have less density to maintain social distancing. On the other hand, restrictions on moving around freely have increased our reliance on the internet, high-speed cloud servers and high resolution video conferencing tools to name a few. Business meets, interviews and team meets have shifted online already. As such, we would need faster internet, a greater bandwidth and more sophisticated tools to facilitate a decent communication.

  1. More emphasis on employee health

As health awareness increases, companies would automatically lay more emphasis on the well being of their employees. In order to maintain a smooth flow of work, a company would require healthy employees, a strong virtual connectivity and yes, a disinfected office table and chair set. The modern office will have fewer touch points which means less chances of spreading any germs. They will have to make social distancing comfortable by placing transparent barriers between each office workstation. This is the time when cubicles might get back into fashion.

What changes and what remains the same is for time to tell. At HNI India, we already live by the motto of ‘work happy’. Certainly then, all our office furniture is aimed towards promoting a healthy and happy lifestyle – be it your workplace or your home office. If you are intrigued by the prospect of a better workplace, begin by investing in better furniture. Visit HNI India – the leading ergonomic office furniture manufacturers and check out our range of office and work from home furniture. You can also order from our e-store online, and get online office furniture delivered right to your doorstep! Visit HNI India, today.