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Do you know what is the most challenging thing for remote employees today? They are all in a transitional state from office to virtual setup. The evolution from work-life balance to work-life integration began at the same time. This may sound like a huge transformation, but if the organizations are not implementing it properly, it can be a nightmare.
Employers who want to improve their employees' ability to handle work and life have a variety of options. HR's have got various reasons to focus on work-life integration. It includes employee health, decreased absenteeism, decreased employee burnout, and increased productivity.
These are seven ways HR can assist in work-life integration:
I have several co-workers who prefer remote work: employees, freelancers, and solopreneurs. I know all of these people have chosen this mode of work so that they can easily manage their work and life. Employees can state their choices.
Employers who provide their workers with the autonomy to manage their own time are valued by their workforce. Employers should consider this and help workers manage their obligations at home and at work. I believe this not only helps the employees to be productive, but they are the ones who often take ownership of tasks that are beyond their comfort zone.
I have often heard this in my network when organizations are much more interested in the amount of work their employees are committing. When I question the impact they are creating through their assignment; they have no answer for this. That's the irony of various organizations. One must understand it is not about how many tasks they are checking off their task list. Suppose your employees have worked more than 50 hours a week, but when you look for the overall impact, you can't see any. What do you think your employee missed out on?
I will tell you; they were not doing any work that led to effective results.
In reality, some workers might be able to do their work more quickly than others and might not need the full eight hours at the office. That is what work-life integration is.
Everyone is talking about mental health nowadays. A few years ago, this was a stigma that people only discussed through misunderstandings. Today that is not the problem. Healthcare can be availed easily. The only challenge is that it is expensive. It takes a toll on the employee and the firms they are associated with. Fortunately, a well-executed wellness program may help firms reduce healthcare costs, increase productivity, and retain workers in light of the world's rising healthcare costs. This will naturally boost the morale of the employees and helps in enhancing their work quality.
Let me ask you, can the same dress size fit you and your sibling? No, it won't. You both have different body proportions. Similarly, one policy is not suitable for every employee. No one size fits all exists in this era.Today's workers value flexibility and personalization above all else. The traditional standardization approach won't help HR create enjoyable and meaningful experiences for all employees. I am not saying that you should change your company's policy. It would help if you stopped being rigid with certain rules.
I've had the chance to talk with remote workers about awareness programs for the previous few years. These programs are basically regarding work-life integration and the strategies employees can adopt to be more efficient. I want to add here that this is still in theory in most organizations. The company's initiatives can only bridge the gap between the employees and these programs.
Employees can gain from HR's initiatives and counseling services that will aid them in overcoming the difficulties of switching to a remote working arrangement. Then they will be much efficient in integrating work,personal life and family.
Giving team members the freedom to work whenever it is convenient for them rather than mandating that they follow a rigid 9-to-5 schedule is the most straightforward way for HR to solve this. I have never said 9-5 is unsuitable, but we are talking about remote employees here. Employees working from a virtual setup are stuck in a work-life balance vs. work-life integration dilemma. You must give this working freedom to employees if you want to see exponential growth.
"I cannot convey anything properly to my team members and the management." Sounds familiar? Most of you reading this blog about remote work must feel this often.
The constant emails, keeping the management in the loop, are useless if you are not communicating precisely. By utilizing collaborative tools and expanding the employee network outside of work, HR may be able to make up for the communication breakdown resulting from remote working.
Undoubtedly, Covid-19 and the ensuing culture of working from home have had a significant impact on everyone's lives. And the pandemic's effects on employment uncertainty and financial difficulties have improved many people's mental health. A flexible schedule or a few benefits may not be sufficient. Instead, it's critical to demonstrate empathy for employees and their issues.
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