Anne in accounting ducks into an empty office to take a call from her son’s pediatrician. Marketing Mike is always ordering some kind of gadget off of Amazon. And Drew from downstairs leaves early a few times a week to pick up his kids from school.
Happens every day.
Work and life is blending together. We don’t just work from home anymore – we home from work, too. Pretty much all of us. A massive 93 percent of employees admit to taking time out of the workday to schedule doctor’s appointments, do banking or shop online, according to the Captivate Network.
This is not necessarily a bad thing.
As homing from work becomes less the exception and more the rule, leading employers are employers are acting as facilitators, even conduits to on-demand services. And they’re finding that by getting out ahead and offering solutions, they’re able to manage disruptions and improve productivity and engagement.
“If an employer is responsible for helping reduce the friction and make life easier for employees, those employees are going to feel a responsibility to their employer,” says Kelly Russell, VP of Account Management for Care for Business. “They’re going to feel a responsibility to pay back the employer if you will as an acknowledgment and appreciation for those benefits. And it’s also going to help differentiate that employer from other organizations out there that might not offer the same kind of culture or benefits that help reduce that friction.”
Watch the Video Below to Hear More About Reducing the Friction in Employees’ Lives as a Competitive Advantage
Your employees are homing from work anyway. So you might as well manage the chaos by incorporating sharing economy principles in your employee benefits. Doing so will help to reduce the “friction” in your employees lives, and help to boost productivity and engagement — it might even help with recruiting and retention.
Here are a few ways you can get started.
- Bring Services In-House
Manicube, “Massage Mondays,” yoga at your desk and dry-cleaning pickup a just few of the many ways progressive companies are bringing in house the types of workday tasks employees used to fit in before, during or after their workdays. Offering these services onsite is a tradeoff employers are willing to make based on the understanding that they’re managing disruptions and employees will return the favor by putting in the time to complete their work tasks.
- Provide Access to On-Demand Services
Leading enterprises understand that employees are three-dimensional people whose lives outside of the office affect their performance at work. That’s why many have taken steps to improve work-life balance/integration and reduce that “friction” when things go awry. One way employers are doing this is through acting as a conduit to the sharing economy and providing access to on-demand services with turnkey solutions. A few examples of this are TelaDoc, a service that gives employees 24-hour access to doctors from phone or video chat, and Care for Business, which allows employees to find and hire housekeepers, dog walkers, tutors and child care or senior care providers to meet their immediate or long-term needs.
- Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Science says short breaks improve employee performance and productivity. Whether employees are taking 15 to grab a cup of coffee, book a flight or check in with the nanny who’s home with a sick kid, chances are they’re doing whatever will best help them to refresh and refocus to return to their job. If it means poking around on Amazon, so be it. Last-minute shopping online is less of a workday disruption than a trip to the mall.