Photograph by Memories by Ana
The business world can’t get enough of the ‘new normal,’ ‘hybrid work,’ and ‘future of the workplace’ news. Experts agree that post-pandemic, the workplace will look different, with employees demanding to remain working remotely for—at least—part of the time.
In June 2020, in the first days of reopening after the shutdown, around 90% of HudCo members were small business owners or self-employed. But as of April 2021, the number of remote-working members has nearly doubled—a sign that even in the commuter-friendly Rivertowns, the hybrid work trend has had an impact.
But will it continue? Or will these remote workers end up back in headquarters full-time? That’s what both employees and employers are currently struggling to answer.
“Prior to Covid, I commuted into my office every day, Monday through Friday,” Nancy Soriano editorial director West Elm, based in Brooklyn. “Now that we’ve been (successfully) working remotely for over a year, I’m hopeful I’ll be able to ‘work from home’ a few days each week once the offices get back to full capacity. I’ll probably be back in the office 2-3 days a week. I’ll coordinate that time with my team and cross-functional partners to optimize it.”
Major tech companies, including Twitter, Dropbox, and Facebook, have made headlines by already announcing permanent remote work policies. And companies that already relied on collaboration from freelancers and staff around the world, like digital agencies, have found they can forgo office space altogether post-Covid.
“The pandemic influenced a lot of changes for me and my partner. In August, we decided to move out of the city to Dobbs Ferry. When I discovered HudCo just down the street from our apartment it seemed like a no-brainer,” said Nicole DeMeo, account manager for Ivory Worldwide. “Back in December, (my company) fully moved out of our office space. We will be working remotely for the foreseeable future. ”
Many recent studies show that, moving forward, employees will demand more flexible options in terms of work location and schedule. Business has, in many industries, stayed the course despite lockdowns and other restrictions, proving they can allow for a more fluid work environment. But many employees await announcements around remote work policies.
“In some ways it’s better, in that I have a lot more time to spend with my family. I get to make breakfast, eat dinner on time, and I don’t have to lose time with a commute,” said Susan Tercero, a director of events at Apple. “It isn’t clear yet, but likely I’ll be back (to the office) fully once we get to a better place with the pandemic.”