During the extreme circumstances that occurred during COVID-19, there were some huge changes in Google searches:
Searches for the Best Webcam increased by 100%.
Searches for the Best Computer Monitor surged by 72%.
Searches For “Remote Teams” Increased By 1150%
How Remote Working Spread Across The Globe
It is relevant to note that working remotely had already been on the rise since before the COVID-19 pandemic struck the world. A July 2019 report informs that remote work experienced a global growth of 159% between 2005 and 2017.
In 2017, in the US, only 3.4% of the workforce worked remotely. By March 5, 2020, 46% of US companies had already asked their employees to work from home. That provides a pertinent example of how sharply COVID-19 has impacted remote working in the US.
This is not a US-specific story, however. As high as 88% of companies across the world have advised their companies to work from home during COVID-19. In the Asia-Pacific region, 91% of companies enabled their employees to work remotely from home since the pandemic started.
Long-Term Impact: The Positives
The whole world has learned what is possible to do digitally. As Microsoft puts it, COVID-19 has permanently changed the way we connect with each other, and the way we do business.
Microsoft reports that team meetings increased by 10% during the lockdown. As walking over to a colleague’s desk to ask something, or to chat over a cup of coffee disappeared with remote working – people are spending more time collaborating online.
Interestingly, though, the number of shorter meetings climbed with longer meetings featuring less. This indicates a new pattern of collaboration: Meeting several times a day/week for quick sharing of updates, brainstorming, cross-learning, etc.
A 72% hike in short messages between colleagues and teammates on work-related matters is another pointer to how people are connecting differently to function efficiently as remote teams.
A Forbes article informs that 57% of the respondents to a survey mentioned that they would like to continue working remotely in a post-COVID situation also.
The same article refers to an IBM survey where 80% of respondents have expressed a preference to work remotely at least part of the time in post-COVID times.
A Harvard Business Review article mentions that there is 45% higher motivation among employees if they can choose where to work: at the office, from home, or a mix of both.
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