What Impact has COVID-19 Made on the U.S. Workforce?

The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred extensive change. Shelter-in-place orders, closures of non-essential businesses, staged reopenings, and widespread use of work-from-home arrangements have impacted nearly everyone.

The workforce has had to adapt in numerous ways, both in an immediate sense and to plan for what the new normal may become. If you are wondering how the workforce has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, here’s what you need to know.

The Desire to Work Remotely

Telecommuting options have long been a sought-after benefit. Now that more professionals have gotten to experience working from home personally, the desire to have it as a long-term option has grown for many.

While companies may prefer to bring employees back into the office, many are having to be increasingly flexible if they want to keep top performers on staff. Many professionals have proven they are capable of remaining productive while telecommuting and they appreciate the agility the approach provides their lives. As a result, they are increasingly interested in employers who will allow them to continue to work from home, and may seek out new opportunities if their current employer isn’t open to leaving the option on the table.

Investments in Home Offices

Professionals who were able to work from home often made investments in their home offices or their designated workspaces. Some increased their internet speeds while others bought furniture, computer peripherals, and other items that made telecommuting easier to manage. At times, professionals completely remodeled rooms or large closets, creating private and peaceful work areas that ensured they could remain productive.

Not only do these investments show that many members of the workforce want to be at their best when working remotely, but also that they are preparing to use this approach long-term. This can be ideal for employers who embrace the approach, as there’s a stronger chance new hires will be well-equipped at this stage, as well as seasoned employees.

E-Learning is the Go-to Approach

When it comes to professional development, today’s workforce is increasingly interested in e-learning opportunities. They are remote by nature, something that was crucial during stay-at-home orders for those who wanted to build new skills.

Additionally, e-learning meant companies didn’t have to abandon training initiatives, ensuring they could upskill their staff with ease, regardless of physical location. Plus, e-learning allowed employers to offer training to team members about how to use remote work technologies, such as VPN and video conferencing software, ensuring those who were unfamiliar could get the training they needed to thrive.

Ultimately, COVID-19 has altered not just how professionals work, but also their expectations moving forward. Since it isn’t clear how long the pandemic will remain a concern, many of these views may become increasingly cemented, fundamentally changing what the workforce wants and how it works.

If you’d like to learn more about the impacts of COVID-19 on the workforce and business world, the team at CPS Recruitment can help. Contact us today.

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