As we navigate through the pandemic; return to work and what that means moving forward becomes an important question to ask. As few companies start gearing up towards remote, or hybrid models, and some returning to the office several days a week, the question becomes more about finding a balance and what’s right for you, than finding a single, uniform answer for every company.
In a study about remote work, Stanford’s economist Nicholas Bloom determined that remote employees were 13% more productive at home than at the office and resigned at half the rate of their in-office counterparts. It also indicated that the remote employees in the company were only promoted roughly at half the rate, compared to those in the office. The increased productivity did not double as an increased reward for the remote employee, as people skills, face-to-face time with your managers and team bonding cannot be completely replicated in a remote model.
While staying remote has cost advantages to the company and increased productivity, it also comes down to the fact that “ Humans are social animals with a basic need to belong”.
In the last 14 months of remote work, we have all gone through the different stages of creativity, productivity, loneliness, and mental exhaustion. It is difficult to inculcate company culture and values remotely, especially with employees being onboarded remotely during the last year.
Our CEO Chuck Ganapathi pointed out the increase in productivity due to digital engagement and remote work in his interview with DisruptTV, “We figured out how to make the last year work. It was a tough year for all of us and we as a company grew significantly due to the pandemic-related digital transformation. We did this by setting up people for success while working from home, and yes, the productivity increased.
We've demonstrated to society and ourselves that” remote” works. We've had so many CEOs that said they didn't believe at the beginning of the pandemic that they could be productive while working remotely or that they could sell and engage customers by only digital engagement. They had the best quarter, the best fiscal year, and the best performance in their company's history including my company. So, we've proven that you can be completely digital and increase productivity.
I think now the proving point is trying to find a healthy balance where we continue to be mindful of mental health and the fact that there's a need for a sense of belonging and gathering and collaborating.
Talking about how Tact is helping the Life Sciences industry adopt the omnichannel engagement model, Chuck continued, “More than any other industry Life sciences is at the center right now. Not just because they are helping us fight this deadly virus but it's also because it is causing them a disruption that they have not seen in decades.
I think their world has changed fundamentally because of this and our technology has helped them navigate from this old way of just face-to-face visits to this new digital, omnichannel way of engagement. Yes, face-to-face is still important when it comes to patients meeting doctors but also engaging them asynchronously the way we engage our families with WhatsApp or WeChat, that is a new element that I think is going to fundamentally change how pharma companies engage customers.