The Future of IT Companies: The End of the ‘You’re Muted’ Era?

July 5, 2021

Find out what our Head of Facility Management, Miguel Valério, thinks about work models for companies like Critical Software, as well as the challenges they bring.

People in a video conference

Both people and organisations are changing the way they work. This path began way before Covid-19 came into our lives but the pandemic has accelerated it.

Work turned fully remote. Who’s not familiar with ‘Zoom lingo’? We bet you know what we’re talking about! ‘Can’t see your screen’, ‘You’re muted’, and ‘My Internet just went down’ are just some of the examples that prove how experienced we’ve become with this new reality. In fact, humans are quite adaptable and many like their newfound ways of working! The numbers speak for themselves: 2 out of every 3 employees are expecting to continue remote working. 

When asked about what the future of work will look like, Miguel Valério, our Head of Facility Management, argues that “it's more important to look at the organisation, the culture, and the business and then compose a system that balances all the different needs in an incremental way than it is to try to define and categorise a ‘best future model of work’.”  

Let’s learn more about what he thinks comes next.  

Beyond hybrid work 

Post-pandemic, many companies are now planning to combine remote and on-site working: what is often known as a hybrid work model. But is it enough?  

Companies should now be focused on thinking about the behaviour and needs of employees after the pandemic ends. This demands joined-up thinking to find a new model that can cover everything a company needs as well as incorporating the flexibility that employees have come to expect. 

A hybrid work model promises increased productivity for individuals and small teams, more individual flexibility, and improved employee experiences.  

While the potential benefits of a hybrid model are substantial, the experience of the last year shows that mixing virtual and on-site work can be a lot harder than it looks. The truth is, at the start of the pandemic, we were adapting and shifting to a new reality as fast as possible. Now we have the chance to step back do it the right way - even if it takes a bit more time. 

Miguel adds: “Hybrid isn’t enough. It must be flexible to the company at stake. The way it is systematised and adapted to each company, with a central focus on its people, clients and community, based on a principle of flexibility, is crucial. Flexibility means guaranteeing a model that’s suited to a variety of needs, activities and behaviours within a company, ensuring productivity and wellbeing are optimised.” 


Implementing a flexible system at work 

Critical’s first step towards this era of change is the launch of a tool that allows employees to book and guarantee an available seat whenever they are working in one of our offices. 

The goal is to provide day-to-day flexibility and a variety of options and approaches for the different kinds of work that we are involved in. This is the first step in evolving to a future model, that will only be fully implemented once the pandemic has come to an end. 

But flexible, bookable workstations are just the beginning: companies’ cleaning policies must guarantee spaces are always properly sanitised when they will be used by different people, as well as maintaining high standards of rapid workspace support. 

Miguel Valério believes that “the future of work will not be standardised. We will have a variety of factors for multiple situations, personal and professional, that will create different dynamics, on a constant and daily basis, which will be different from one company to another.” 

“One of the primary impacts of remote working is on the way we interact with others. This has changed the way we discuss topics and work together. Despite remote working increasing, to an extent, the connectivity between members of the same team working in different locations, there has been challenges that all businesses have faced with a restricted ability to meet face to face, including a breakdown in the connection between different teams and organisational structures.”  

“In the future, because some employees will continue to prefer remote working where possible, and others will prefer working in an office, our workplaces must be prepared to respond to a new set of needs. We will see specific areas designed to encourage collaboration, productivity and extreme flexibility. I believe we should create areas that allow agile and rapid changes of entire layouts, modular enough to adapt to different types of activities within the same space.” 

“At this moment in time, the focus is to test and refine the concepts that will likely make up our future work model, so that everyone has the freedom of choice and the ability to enjoy the excellent conditions that we have, which can then be adapted to ensure safety, wellbeing and productivity. Although how we work will be different from the past, rejuvenating the way we interact and adapting to a new flexible approach gives us many new opportunities and is an enjoyable challenge to get right.” 


How Critical shapes the future of the workspace 

Our approach to the workplace, and our mindset as a company, is people-centered and focused on creating positive experiences. 

After preparing and adapting all of our offices to accommodate COVID-19 restrictions, the focus has not been on thinking short-term but rather on expanding and evolving our reality. After careful thought, we went ahead with designing a model that would respond to a post-pandemic future.  

“For me, a utopian vision of the future of work incorporates flexible workspace ecosystems, rich in interaction, and where sharing ideas is effortless. Where personal relationships and technology embrace one another to enhance our creativity, in an environment that has a positive impact: on employees, our clients, our communities, and on our planet,” concludes Miguel. 

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