In spring of 2020, as the pandemic took hold in the U.S., most companies switched some or all of their employees to remote work out of necessity. What they may not have known at the time is that doing so will likely change the American workplace forever.
Regardless of whether remote work was part of a pre-pandemic long-term workforce plan, one thing is now clear: The work-from-home genie is out of the bottle, and no one can put it back in.
“As IT, we doled that out cautiously and, in some cases, we leveraged auditors’ concerns that certain positions shouldn’t work from home,” says Ralph Labarta, CIO/CTO at the HR services provider Engage PEO. “Although the intent of those barriers was good, the rules were rewritten overnight. The auditors say this position shouldn’t work from home? Well that’s great, but the office is closed.”
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