As we near the light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, organizations need to decide how they are going to operate going forward. Culture leader Salesforce – a global, but American cloud-based software company – has landed on three options for its employees:
- The flex option will allow employees to come into the office up to three days per week.
- Other employees will have the option to work remotely full-time, even when it’s safe to return to the office.
- A small subset will come in every day.
Salesforce is calling its new guidelines, ‘Work From Anywhere,’ and says its decision was based on wellness surveys the company has been sending to employees since the onset of the pandemic. “The 9-to-5 workday is dead, and the employee experience is about more than ping-pong tables and snacks,” says Brent Hyder, president and chief people officer at Salesforce.
Going forward, employees working with their managers will choose the option that works best for them. And their physical office spaces will be redesigned as ‘community hubs,’ with collaboration and breakout spaces instead of rows of desks. As it relates to life beyond the virus, Salesforce envisions a more community-minded office – no dividers or social distancing signs, people standing to chat in the halls, and employees sitting unmasked around a table to work.
It’s important to note that Salesforce is regularly named to the list of Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For. The 49,000-person company has high levels of employee engagement because their leaders get it. For this reason, I have no doubt that the aforementioned plan will work, and continue to drive high levels of customer satisfaction, employee engagement and productivity, and profitable revenue growth.
Jill, What Can I Do? While the Salesforce plan is simply one, I believe it’s a good one. They are not going to get this wrong. So take a page out of Salesforce’s playbook: survey employees, give them options, and be open to change. The payoff will be enormous: engaged employees who give you a ton of discretionary effort, and go above and beyond the call of duty.