Return to the office: baby and bath water

THE EDITOR: The arrival of significant doses of covid19 vaccines comes with the likelihood that in the foreseeable future many employees will be fully vaccinated and able to return to traditional office spaces again.

This is welcome news for many. Not every business and/or employee has been able to maintain acceptable levels of productivity while working remotely, away from colleagues and the camaraderie that comes along with it.

However, many businesses have been able to pivot and utilise communications technology along with creative process re-engineering to continue work at equivalent and possibly even higher levels of productivity than pre-pandemic. While many stand to benefit from simply going back to “the way things have always been done,” take a moment to consider some unintended benefits that we have gained as a country over the last year due to pandemic restrictions: less traffic on our roads, more productive hours during the day, flexibility for parents looking after children, more personal control over hours of work, more hours to sleep and recuperate daily, less wear and tear on vehicles, cleaner air quality due to less traffic, better work/life balance, and better physical health.

Many businesses have been able to save on rental and other recurring expenses either by relocating or becoming leaner and letting go of desirable but unnecessary luxuries.

The business community cannot simply bury its collective head in the sand and pretend that life has not continued during the pandemic for many. There is an opportunity here to resolve some very real and challenging socio-economic issues and save money, while building resilience against further workplace disruption in the future.

We must not give in to the temptation to throw the proverbial “baby out with the bath water” by erasing every lesson that we have learnt in the last year. It has been tough, but we have learnt how to get the same things done but differently along the way.

We must incorporate what we have learnt into what we knew before to come out a stronger, more resilient and more productive TT than ever before.





"Return to the office: baby and bath water"

More in this section