Working from home (WFH) or telework is something that until COVID-19 has been known only as a voluntary and often exceptional practice in the workplace, while remoters were often looked at with skepticism. However, the forced working from home experiences have appeared to be better-than-expected.
Coupled with the investments enabling remote working from home during the pandemic caused many knowledge workers to rethink the return to the offices, and to favor continuing working from home occasionally, mostly or indefinitely. In response to the growing demand for remote working, companies are experimenting and quickly adjusting their work policies to allow more flexibility. But do we know enough about remote working on such a large scale to make informant decisions?
In this keynote, I will share evidence from thirteen surveys of perceived productivity and three detailed case studies of remote work. Analysis of employee preferences for continuing working remotely after the pandemic suggests that WFH is here to stay, and marks the rise of hybrid work arrangements. Further we will dive into the current status of office presence and the strategies that companies take to deal with the emerging changes in the workplace.
The experience behind comes from studying 20+ new work policies from companies in Scandinavia, Europe, and Asia.
Darja Šmite is a professor of software engineering at the Blekinge Institute of Technology, where she leads research efforts on globally distributed software development and outsourcing.
Her research interests include remote and virtual forms of work, large-scale agile software development, team performance and organisational decentralisation. In her research, Šmite works closely with software companies and has experience with working with Ericsson, Spotify, Telenor, ABB, Tieto, DXC, Emerson Process Management, Boss Media, CALVI, and DATI.
Šmite is also a part time research scientist at SINTEF in Norway.