WORK FROM HOME

Remote working an option employer will consider going forward, Survey finds.

The survey found out that only a fifth of the respondents had such a plan, at 21.4 per cent or 69 of the respondents.

In Summary
  • At least 65.5% of employers have allow their employees change their workstations to their home 
  • Only 21 per cent said their work falls in the essential services category meaning the staff must be present at work.
Using a computer
Using a computer

Trust issues between workers and their bosses and lack of supervision are among worries that managers expressed as the hiccup in the implementation of remote working.

"There is mistrust in some employers. Some supervisors, perhaps because they feel they must be in control or don't trust their workers, are uncomfortable having employees work offsite," the survey titled The COVID-19 pandemic and the Kenyan workplace" conducted by human resources consulting firm Corporate Staffing Services revealed.

However, in spite of such teething problems, nearly three quarters of the employers said they would like to entrench the work-from-home culture in their organizations once the novel Coronavirus pandemic is over.

 

The presidential directive in March 15 urging employers to allow their employees change their workstations to their home environments to help curb spread of the global pandemic has been implemented by over half of employers, with 65.5 per cent having obeyed the order according to the survey findings, as the public health situation in the country faces a never seen before challenge.

"Whichever way you look at it, Conavirus has disrupted the workplace," adds Corporate Staffing Services managing partner Perminus Wainaina.

The survey which involved total of 1,830 employees and 258 employers from various sectors in the country revealed that employers never prepared their staff for such an eventuality, hence employees lack the right training and capacity to fulfill their duties effectively.

Employers also felt that there is less supervision when a staff has to work off-site, giving leeway to poorly done work, which in effect would mean repeating the task and wasting time while at it.

They also felt that the staff are less productive while working at home. Of those who have not implemented the president's order, 68 per cent indicated that lack of supervision structures left them no option than to require their employees to physically show up at work.

Only 21 per cent said their work falls in the essential services category meaning the staff must be present at work.

According to Wainaina, the secret lies in continual training of both employees and employers to ensure a smooth transition to remote working.

 
 

 "There is need for proper training not only on the technical but also skills such as discipline. There's also need to ensure that there is infrastructure to support the employee," he said.

Many businesses have no business continuity plan, a strategy that gives direction to a company or business on its work processes in the event of some unforeseen calamity.

The survey found out that only a fifth of the respondents had such a plan, at 21.4 per cent or 69 of the respondents.