The pandemic introduced and accelerated changes in the world of work. Also in offices, transport, in human relations and also in consumers. The emergence of the coronavirus changed everything, including the profile of future employees and their talents: the so-called “pandemials”. “What we are looking for is that they have autonomy, common sense, flexibility and willing to challenge the status quo”, summarized the CEO of Telecom, Roberto Nóbile.
Justly, “Changes at work”, was the central theme of a debate organized by Clarion and what is part of the cycle “The world to come”, in which, in addition to Nóbile, Sergio Kaufman, president of Accenture Argentina; Brenda Puig, leader of the IDEA business lawyers network, and Santiago Bilinkis, entrepreneur and technologist, who was moderated by Daniel Fernández Canedo and Silvia Naishtat, editor-in-chief and editor of the Economy section Clarion.
“We want new employees to have autonomy and are willing to challenge the status quo,” says Roberto Nóbile.
The cycle has the main support of Banco Macro, OSDE and DESA. And also with the accompaniment of Telecom and Afarte. The first talk covered the difficulties of the present and the coming corporate “new normal”, remote and face-to-face work, regulations and training. And the urgencies in the world of work and the muscle to face the crisis. “At Accenture,” Kaufman stressed. we already have 3,000 pandemials”, He said, referring to the employees recruited in the pandemic.
“In a world that is constantly changing, knowledge is worth little,” surprised the top executive of the consulting giant. In this regard, he clarified that the main thing today is “The exercise of learning”. For his part, Puig said that all companies are impacted by such a changing reality. “Some are more aware than others and the challenge is to rethink the future that is coming,” he said.
The future, in this sense, has already arrived. Teleworking became the predominant modality at the beginning of the pandemic and this produced immediate responses. Less space and office redesign, remote tasks, flexible demands for workers are some of the trends that accelerated the pandemic. Much of those changes were planned. Nevertheless, “What we thought was going to take 10 years happened to us in 1”Kaufman argued.
“What we thought was going to happen in 10 years happened in 1,” says Sergio Kaufman.
What happened? The statistics clearly reflect the impact of the quarantine. In the second quarter of 2020, 1,433,410 were working remotely. In parallel, from 2017 to 2020, the vacancy of offices in Capital doubled (8.20% to 16.7%). Hence the rise of virtual work and the lower occupation of corporate buildings, are inescapable records. Nóbile considered that these changes will last. “80% of our people -he remarked- want to continue working in a hybrid and flexible format”.
Teleworking, thus, proliferated but virtuality “in Argentina has been going on for at least 10 years,” says Puig, but the pandemic intensified a format that is here to stay. In this sense, Bilinkis remarked, “training for this hybrid world”Is a fundamental aspect. The technologist hopes that, once the pandemic is over, there will be no turning back and that learning can be taken advantage of “to build a new normal”.
For Santiago Bilinkis, “training for this new hybrid world” is a fundamental aspect of the conversion.
For Kaufman, the combination of both work modalities (face-to-face and virtual) implies enormous challenges for corporations. Among the advantages, is the convenience of developing and accommodating tasks based on the available times. “Just as routine work can be solved with telework, creativity and innovation are seriously damaged with a remote scheme”, He pointed out by way of example.
Bilinkis took stock: “Before the pandemic,” he stressed, “people and companies were very suspicious of teleworking. In a pandemic we realized that many more jobs can be done remotely, but it is also much more convenient for companies and people, “he said. However, Bilinkis pointed out that “the majority (companies and workers) today are inclined towards a more flexible model between presence and virtuality ”.
The work of the future, the specialists agree, will be similar but also different from the current one. The hybrid format, anyway, “It requires new skills, because remote work is different from face-to-face”. Nóbile completed and gave clues: “In Telecom it has 23,000 people and at the beginning of the pandemic we managed to get 70% to work remotely in less than a week.” Regarding the future, the senior executive listed: “What we are looking for is for work to be much more agile, organized in multidisciplinary cells and without borders.”
Brenda Puig, from Idea, argued that remote work lowers fixed costs for companies.
The hybrid format involves regulating virtual and face-to-face work. “Teleworking has existed for many years in Argentina,” insisted Puig. Regarding this aspect, the specialist believes that this modality “has many benefits, because federalizes employment (can be done from anywhere), lowers fixed costs, occupies fewer offices and that empowers SMEs ”. Puig points out that many companies have embraced virtuality and verified that it works.
However, the specialist clarified that “some presence is good and necessary” and considered that this process of change “was surely going to happen, but it accelerated with the arrival of the pandemic.” Going forward, companies already see that “the new normal” work will be different from both the pre-pandemic and the current one. How? “We are redesigning all the physical spaces of the offices, with absolutely mobile workstations, and the employee will go when he needs to go”, Remarked Nóbile. On the other hand, he added that “we are working on a training model to be able to work in a different way.”
Kaufman completes: “Education has to change too, no longer to train people for what is being done. Because when we see how value is created in the world, the main thing is intangible assets. Those are the changes that are required for future jobs, ”interpreted the senior Accenture executive.