Remote workforce technology boosts employee productivity

A fresh look at work-at-home benefits

A whole new work-at-home mindset has emerged in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. As pressures mount on companies and their employees to seamlessly work from remote locations, HR management tools and techniques that include AI, the cloud, collaborative software, video conferencing, virtualization and security take on greater importance in keeping businesses running and employees engaged, motivated and productive.

Companies with remote workforce technology and management policies already in place before COVID-19 are well ahead of organizations playing catch-up in the race to remain competitive. According to Fortune, more than 75% of CEOs surveyed said they have "significantly accelerated" their company's digital transformation during the pandemic, and 40% are spending more on IT infrastructure and platforms.

Employee experiences in remote workplaces have apparently improved as a result. McKinsey & Company revealed in a June 2020 report that "many employees liberated from long commutes and travel have found more productive ways to spend that time, enjoyed greater flexibility in balancing their personal and professional lives, and decided that they prefer to work from home rather than the office."

Once the pandemic recedes, the office will again be central to many companies' operations, and employees may prefer the benefits of face-to-face interactions. Yet more than one-third of companies responding to a September 2020 Conference Board survey said they haven't yet set a date for reopening.

Meanwhile, numerous companies are finding that a significant or exclusive remote digital workforce environment is more friendly for their employees and their bottom line than their old business model. "Many organizations," noted McKinsey, "think they can access new pools of talent with fewer locational constraints, adopt innovative processes to boost productivity, create an even stronger culture and significantly reduce real-estate costs."

This handbook examines how HR remote workforce technology dedicated to recruiting, onboarding, employee engagement and workforce management contributes heavily to this new mindset.