Since the lockdown imposed mid of March due to the spreading of the coronavirus pandemic, up to 96% of business service centres have recommended to their employees to work from home. Currently 90% of employees working in the business services sector that employs around 120 000 people in the Czech Republic are now working remotely from home.
ABSL in the Czech Republic had conducted a short survey across members to find out what measures and various precautions they are putting in place to protect their employees as well as minimize the impacts of the pandemic on their business operations. Here is an overview of the outcomes.
MAIN HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SURVEY:
The Czech Business Services today show one of the highest levels of home working flexibility during imposed quarantine, enabling to contribute significantly to the fight against coronavirus whilst maintaining a healthy working economy going forward.
– 96% centers deployed home office
– 80% employees on home office
– 100% ban business trips
– 100% cancel / postpone all internal meetings
– 98% centres deploy digital platforms for meetings
– 60% centres continue to recruit and onboard newcomers remotely
– 8% centres stopped recruiting activities
– 90% increased hygiene measures in the workplace
More than half of the centres managed to deploy work from home for all their employees, 93% of centres has more than 80% of their employees working from home and 7% of centres with just three quarters of employees working from home.
“By quickly taking up measures and smoothly shifting to working from home models, the centres were able to flexibly adapt to the Covid-19 situation and continue to deliver their services without major obstructions,” notes Jonathan Appleton, Managing Director of ABSL.
Most of internal as well as external business meetings have been cancelled or postponed to a later date and all employees are strongly encouraged to organise meetings, videoconferences or webinars on digital platforms in order to stay in regular contact with their colleagues and leadership. Almost all centres have a ban on business trips and travel abroad (now also imposed by closed borders).
The fact that only 8% of centres stopped their recruiting and onboarding activities is a very positive outcome of the survey. The vast majority of the centres continue to recruit (65%) new employees according to plans but with the use of new methods online and digital technologies. Interviews are being conducted via Skype, for example or other digital platforms and all the candidates that have accepted the job offer and are joining the company in the upcoming weeks must undergo medical screening and inform of their travel in the past two weeks.
Health protection and hygienic measures are also being put into place by most of the centres to help protect their employees that are not able to work from home (due to the nature of their work). In 80% of cases, disinfection and cleaning of common areas are more intense, virucidal soaps are available in kitchens and workspace platforms, few of the centres measure temperature of their employees and have face-masks available at the workplace.
“The business services sector has always been very flexible way before the coronavirus pandemic, enabling its employees to, at least partially, be able to work from home. This best practice now turns out to be a great advantage during these difficult times. Centres can react fast and set up processes that protect their people and enable them to work from home. I am convinced that all this will now lead to further adapting new digital skills and support the digitalization of business services as well as the whole of the Czech economics,” concludes Jonathan Appleton.