In a webinar by Awfis, home-grown flex workspace provider-
‘India Inc’s Return to the Workplace: Strategies for the New Office’, experts said that pandemic has accelerated the digital transformation for businesses by providing an opportunity to reimagine the future of work. Companies are trying to adapt to these changes to provide a solution that works best for their employees.
“We are in the midst of some of the largest transformation of the decade that will forever redefine how work gets done in India Inc. While WFH did help businesses survive the lockdown, there is a general fatigue that has arisen from lack of social interactions significantly affecting company cultures,” said Amit Ramani, CEO & Founder, Awfis.
While WFH was proclaimed as the new normal, it has proven to be a non-viable solution in the long term for substantial portion of the workforce which has resulted in employees across the globe to look for solutions that offer ample flexibility and collaboration.
Furthermore, the inability of Indian households to support a long term WFH due to infrastructural constraints has led to the adoption of hybrid work models by various companies.
“The hybrid model of working answers all aspects, whether it is related to employers, employer or the environment. It is an effective and efficient way for companies to adopt the future of working. An amalgamation of all these facets has demonstrated that the hybrid model of working is here to stay,” said Sameer Saxena, India Real Estate Services Leader at Marsh & McLennan Companies.
Niraj Basotia, Group COO, Usha Martin Technologies said that the evolution and preparedness of companies in terms of infrastructure and cyber security will determine how fast they are able to adapt to a hybrid culture and make it successful for their employees.
“Additionally, employee discipline and management’s trust in the employee will go hand in hand in defining how the hybrid model of working will take shape,” Basotia said.
Experts said that blurring of lines between personal spaces and professional space can cause fatigue amongst employees and put into question the feasibility of a WFH scenario.
“The new office will become the meeting point driven by quality. Today, organizations are evaluating and experimenting until a new model for real estate evolves. Focus of organisations is on maintaining and enhancing social capital and culture,” said Viral Desai, National Director Office Transactions, Knight Frank India.
According to Shamsher Sindhu, Vice President & Head RES, APAC, Mastercard, the three key pillars that basis which organizations were able to curate a seamless employee experience in a pre-pandemic world were – organizational culture, technology and physical space.
“While these three pillars remain will remain essential, it is imperative to note which of these pillars will be more important in the current scenario,” Sindhu said.
Organizations are focusing on contactless solutions, proximity based solutions and IoT based solutions. Most of these solutions will help productivity of employees and support them to work on the go. Smart offices will be the future with more focus on agility and collaborative spaces.
Work has moved from a workplace centric world to a work centric world. Organizations are now looking at converging work, workforce and workplace.
“The pandemic just changed certain dynamics of the physical workplace and has hastened the realization that work is not somewhere you go, but something you do. It’s not a change, but a fundamental shift,” said Praveen Vasudeva, Country Head, India- Global Real Estate & Facilities, SAP.