Working Remotely with 360PSG
At the end of 2019, OWLLabs published its Key Remote Work and Telecommuting Statistics for 2020 report. Four months into 2020, COVID-19 has blown those projections out of the water.
While the Federal Reserve reports that the number of remote workers has tripled in the past 15 years, just a year ago the US only had 4.3 million remote workers, which represents merely 3.2 percent of the entire workforce.
Now, with 38 governors having issued state-wide shelter in place orders, the majority of people who can work from home, are. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, approximately 30 percent of the US workforce can do their jobs remotely. But that certainly doesn’t mean every employer that could allow for remote work, does. In fact, a whopping 44 percent of companies worldwide had no mechanism in place for telecommuting.
The companies faring the best are those with remote work policies already in place, or those that could quickly transition. Big tech companies like Google, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft and Amazon were able to smoothly implement work-from-home procedures because they depend so heavily on telecommunication tools. Other industries that already rely on remote workers—healthcare, financial services and education—are better positioned to embrace a more comprehensive work-from-home policy for the foreseeable future.
As a digital marketing company, 360 PSG has always understood the importance of communicating via a range of media, so we were well situated to transition to having our employees work remotely. We’ve been doing so for two weeks now, and thought we should check in with some of our team—using remote communication technologies, of course—to see how they are adjusting.
We spoke with our Executive Sales Assistant Kathy, our Digital Marketing Strategist Steve, and our [title] Arnold to get some insight on what they are enjoying about working from home, as well as what they are struggling with.
Living in a multi-generational household, Kathy has found that she’s had to install a baby gate so her grandson knows when it’s OK to visit her, and when she’s working. Like many who are now juggling working from home and supervising small children, Kathy’s had to adjust to a new routine. Her biggest challenge has been getting organized.
“I’m much more organized at the office. I have a place for everything. But at home, I have a desk in my bedroom, and I have to use a table as well,” she said.
Steve has had to turn his living room into a makeshift workspace, which isn’t ideal. He’s also had some issues connecting with the office-sharing software 360 PSG has been using for virtual meetings and conference calls. However, these bumps haven’t affected his ability to connect with his clients or get his work done.
“I’m enjoying it for the most part,” Steve said. “I don’t have to drive, and I’m getting extra sleep. Things seem to be moving along pretty well overall.”
Arnold is definitely enjoying his remote work experience. He finds that this current set-up actually makes him more productive.
“I go to work, and I just get everything done. It’s more peaceful,” he says.
But, he misses being able to connect with his coworkers. “I’m in the house too much; once and awhile, I need interaction.”
Steve and Kathy echoed the same sentiment. While she is still able to connect with clients, Kathy misses the facetime she normally gets with her co-workers. To help alleviate this, the sales team has instituted virtual meetings each morning as a way to connect. Other team members are setting up movie nights since we are unable to participate in our monthly team-building events right now.
All in all, the 360 PSG team is handling working remotely quite well. We are fully operational, and ready to support our existing clients as we always have. We’re also ready to assist new clients as they face these unexpected marketing challenges. Our support and customer service departments can be reached by phone or email, and we are meeting with clients using virtual technology and conference calling capabilities.