The COVID-19 pandemic has had an enormous impact on the way Americans work and the way they view their jobs. After more than a year of online meetings, social distancing and working from home, priorities have shifted for both employees and employers.
Americans and Western culture in general have traditionally placed a lot of importance on work ethic, productivity and climbing the corporate ladder. However, the global health crisis of the past year has caused many companies, and many individuals, to evaluate their workplace processes and norms.
While COVID-19 cases are decreasing across the country and more than one third of Americans have been vaccinated, the country may never return to the “normal” we knew pre-pandemic. Here are five ways workplaces are expected to change permanently as a result of COVID-19.
- An emphasis on flexible schedules. During the coronavirus pandemic, many of us became accustomed to more flexible work schedules and setting our own hours. According to a Gallup poll, 54% of office workers say they’d leave their job for one that offers flexible work time.
- An increase of remote positions. Companies such as Facebook and Twitter are changing their policies to allow employees more opportunities to work from home, even as social distancing regulations begin to relax across the country. These media giants are setting the trend for countries across the country to follow suit.
- More video calls and meetings. Zoom, one of the popular video conferencing platforms, reported the number of daily Zoom meeting participants spiked from 10 million to 300 million during the pandemic. Even as employees begin to return to the workplace, experts predict that virtual meetings will continue.
- More healthcare jobs available. Five of the fastest growing sectors are related to healthcare and social assistance and include occupations such as nurse practitioners, therapy assistants and physician assistants. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that these occupations are expected to grow by 30 percent from 2019-29.
- More casual workplace fashion. Many sources are predicting that workplace attire may be permanently affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. After working from home for more than a year, many employees may be reluctant to don formal businesswear when heading into the office.
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