2020 saw many companies that never considered remote work adopting work from home (WFH) following the COVID lockdown. One year after, people are still working remotely and the WFH which was initially a COVID-19 precaution has become the new normal.
With vaccines already rolling out in countries across the world, one would expect that companies are planning a full return to the office. However, that may not be the case.
Speaking about the future of work, the Head of West, East and Central Africa Business at Logitech, Morgan Mierke, says that work from home won’t end in the next 12 months at the very least.
I know that there has been a rollout of the vaccine in countries across the world, some speedier than others but I think Work from Home is here to stay for the time being. I don’t see that changing for the next 15 – 18 months.Morgan Mierke, Head of West, East and Central Africa Business at Logitech,
Business adaptation to working from home
When the lockdown started and work from home came into effect, people and businesses struggled to adapt to the changes. Favour, an architect told Technext that it was weird changing his daily schedule when he started working from home.
He even joked about waking up in a hurry to get to work before remembering he was working from home. He also highlighted the fact that some tools which he needed that were usually at work were missing at home. This made tasks take longer to complete.
Morgan explained that both employees and employers needed to adapt and change to the new trend of work from home. He concluded that one year after, most people have been able to work from home accordingly.
How Logitech is helping people adapt to WFH
Speaking on the part Logitech played in the move to remote working, Morgan expressed that the company is fortunate to create products that were very useful to employees and employers.
At Logitech, we are fortunate that we manufacture products that are very useful at this time to employees and employers. In keeping teams connected and making sure that people can still go about doing their daily jobs albeit remotely through technology.Morgan Mierke, Head of West, East and Central Africa Business at Logitech,
“Our products themselves have always been used in an office environment. with the advent of having to work from home, most people had to get essential tools like a mouse, keyboard, webcam and headset,” he added.
Morgan also explained that to be really active and work from home 8 hours per day, people and businesses had to adapt as the usual laptop camera and touchpad won’t cut it.
“If you are using your laptop mic the quality sometimes is just bad, the background noise. All these essentials can make people more productive as you don’t have to listen with one ear because you have a faulty headset. It makes workers more comfortable working from home,” he said.
Eloine Barry, the CEO of Africa Media Agency agrees with Morgan, revealing that when she started working from home she didn’t have the best setup. However, when she got fully equipped, her productivity shot through the roof. It was pretty spectacular, she added.
Similarly, Morgan said he had to get a good webcam, microphone to make Zoom calls and a good set of headphones and speakers, not only for himself but so that people on the call could hear him.
Future of Work
Although Morgan believes work from home isn’t ending anytime soon, he explained that from the initial euphoria of being able to work remotely, work from home is gone away.
Morgan touted that employees are getting to the stage where the absence of teamwork, collaboration, meeting around a boardroom, sitting down and exchanging ideas is hampering the free flow of idea.
He explained that exchanges between employees in many companies using WFH in the early days are either through mail or via a BC.
So employers have had to adapt and provide top-notch tools that make sure employees can spend the day online and communicate every sense of collaborative teamwork and make sure the same productivity levels are reached.
Tools needed to work from home
A study revealed that full-time remote employees are working an additional 26 hours a month. This means that if you are WFH, you are probably spending an extra hour added to the 8 you already spending online.
The Logitech boss pointed out why it’s essential to have quality products like a good quality headset that can stay on your head for 8 hours, good microphones and webcams to work with.
I think the old webcams from years ago which we used to do quick skype calls to say hello to friends all over the world is gone. I think we need webcams with 4k, HD.Morgan Mierke, Head of West, East and Central Africa Business at Logitech,
He added that since lots of interaction and comfort are required when working from home, Logitech products which offer a range of the keyboard, mouse, headset and webcams are perfect tools to use.
“Logitech products are designed for ease of use and comfortability, so that if you are working 8 hours a day either on the mouse or the keyboard, you have a comfortable experience. So it’s not a grind to get your daily routine done and it doesn’t feel that different from being in the office,” Morgan concluded.
How Logitech products help people in rural areas that lack electricity
About 47% of Nigerians do not have access to grid electricity and those who do face regular power cuts. When working from home, electricity like the internet and gadgets is essential.
Speaking on how Logitech assists those that lack access to power, Morgan explained that lots of its products have battery alternatives while others have long batteries so you only have to charge at a stage.
He explains that a fully charged keyboard will last you for weeks and a mouse can last you 30 days so you don’t have to charge them on a daily basis.
Morgan, however, added that they may face problems with webcams that use electricity and is power-intensive on HD mode.
Asides from not having power, another major problem people face when working from home is connecting to the internet. Morgan believes that if that is solved, people can easily power their laptops and work easily from home.
Logitech is a Swiss-American manufacturer of computer peripherals and software that has been around for 30+ years. It first started with designing computer mouses then morphed into designing other computer peripherals.
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