It’s no secret that the world of work has changed drastically in the last few years. Many of the traditional excuses organizations had against working remotely have been proven false and many businesses are now thriving in virtual environments. However, for new entrants to the workforce, the lack of physical interactions and spaces can add a whole new set of variables for all parties to consider.
Speaking on the Canadian Job Search Podcast with John Ribeiro, Dr. Sue Haywood, our HR team lead, talked about what employers and job searchers are looking for in today’s market, and how you can be professional, yet authentic. How do you showcase yourself? How do you establish your boundaries in a pandemic world?
The New Workspace
In the podcast, Sue notes that facades that were typical of workers before the pandemic are mostly gone. Workers are more likely to be their authentic selves and Sue suggests leaning into this. Maintain professionalism of course but allow the real you to show through. If there is one glaring notion the pandemic has pushed forward, it’s that we are all human. Good employers will welcome this reality, they aren’t hiring robots after all! Authenticity is equalizing too – it can help teams relate and remember that everyone faces their own types of struggles.
As a job seeker, this awareness can be used to communicate another point highlighted by Sue: the need for virtual communication to go beyond transactional based messages – a little comradery goes a long way to improving morale. For employers, consciously consider this as you build your team and set up norms for working virtually.
The Future of Work
A recent survey conducted by BSG found that 98% of workers want to keep working from home or adopt a flexible model of working, with 67% saying they value flexibility of work over pay level. For employers, this shows the importance of enabling virtual work to retain your talent. So, how can candidates express their interest in working remotely? Sue suggests expressing that desire later in the process, letting the hiring team get to know you first. Remote work is something most employers will be open minded about given the demands of today’s talent market.
What are employers expecting in the post pandemic world? Sue says the shift has been from “when and where they’re working” to “what they’re working on”. Workplaces are increasing focus on what matters while reducing excessive workloads (technology and automation helps achieve this) so people can better take care of themselves. People want to do good work, and it is up to the employer to empower them to do good work.