By looking into the ways the pandemic has changed the way workers work, Jacky Carter, Group Digital Engagement Director at Hays Talent Solutions discusses how the current worklife changes implemented could just become the next ‘new normal’.
Post COVID-19, Will Everyone Continue To Work From Home?
Those of us fortunate enough to have a job that can be done from home have been forced to rethink our working lives in recent weeks and months, working closely with our teams to put new technology and processes in place to enable us to keep our businesses functioning in new ways.
Whilst many people already had the opportunity to work remotely, for most of us, it was just occasionally. However, as we got deeper into this crisis, more and more organizations had to build infrastructure and operating frameworks to enable a much larger proportion of their workforce to work this way on an ongoing basis. An interesting question is, how much of that change will become permanent?
Of course, the idea of working at home in itself is not a new concept – reports suggest that ‘teleworking’ has grown by as much as 173% since 2005 – presumably something to do with improvements in technology, innovation, and communication. As a result, more than half of employees (56%) now have a job where at least some of what they do can be done from home.
On the whole, people welcome it – in fact, a 2019 Owl Labs report found that as many as 80% of employees wanted to work from home at least some of the time, before the crisis. In fact, flexibility is one of the top-ranked work benefits amongst the millennial workforce. Pre-crisis, more than a third of employees (35%) would go so far as to change jobs if they had the chance to work from home, whilst over a third would take a pay cut of up to 5% in order to work at home some of the time.
For prospective employees, the chance to balance their work and home lives can be a big draw. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, many organizations faced the challenge of embracing the benefits of regular remote and flexible working without disrupting or undermining established ways of working. Now we’ve been forced to work from home in a productive way, we could see this being the ‘new normal’ going forward.
It is therefore quite feasible that the previously held fears and concerns of employers have now been overtaken by necessity. In fact, we are already hearing (and seeing in our own teams) reports of the positive impact that more frequent, structured, and focused communication is resulting in increased collaboration, teamwork, and support.
Post COVID-19, Will We Hire Remotely, More Often?
The way we hire individuals has also changed. Today, the default way of interviewing potential candidates is by video call – only a few months ago the default was face-to-face.
For the roles we’ve been asked to hire during the crisis so far, all parties are quite comfortable to take this crucial first meeting online, even though it’s the first time for many. At HAYS Talent Solutions, we’ve even built a group assessment process that is entirely online, yet enables group interaction and offers the hiring team a chance to evaluate candidates in a group setting. Ensuring inclusivity is critical in those processes – everyone must be given equal access and opportunity.
In This New Reality, We Are All Learning As We Go
As we work through this crisis, things are changing daily, so, most of us are evolving our approach as we go. As we become more adept, we’ll be building in the elements we identify as missing along the way – because we are all looking out for those learnings. It might be that we see a need to devise ways to replace the water cooler conversations, things you pick up in the corridors – this is hard to do when everyone is remote. We’re having to find new ways of having fun together over our video conferencing tool of choice and explore new ways to build and evolve our cultures in different ways than we’re used to.
So, having achieved all that it’s important to use this precious time to think about which parts of the ‘old normal’ you will take forward into the post-crisis era and why, and which you will happily wave goodbye to.
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Robinhood’s growth as an ultra low-cost way to invest has shaken up fintech.
Fueled by hundreds of millions of external cash, the no-fee trading platform has forced domestic competitors to slash their fees, spawned international competition, and, in the eyes of some, helped propel the recent equities boom.
The company’s success in driving growth has led to surging revenues. As The Block recently reported, some Robinhood filings (here and here) show that the company earned “nearly $ 100 million in fees for stock and options order flow” in Q1 2020. For context, the same part of Robinhood’s business was reported to have generated $ 69 million in revenue during all of 2018.
For a startup valued north of $ 8 billion, Robinhood’s investors are betting that it will quickly scale as a business, something the famous unicorn appears to be doing in recent quarters and years.
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However, the same filings show that Robinhood’s incomes from payment for order flow — what Investopedia defines as “compensation and benefit a brokerage firm receives for directing orders to different parties for trade execution” — come more from options trading than they do the buying and selling of stocks in the manner that you might be more familiar with. (Robinhood makes money in a number of ways, including “income generated from cash,” its subscription service and other methods.)
Indeed, when TechCrunch first reviewed the filings that broke down how much income Robinhood earns from different types of order flow, we noted that the company generated comparatively large sums from options when contrasted to what the company could extract from more pedestrian equity orders. But the fact didn’t stand out too much at the time; the company has several trading varietals, so who cares which ones bring in more revenue?
It didn’t matter until the company’s user base recorded a tragedy after a 20-year-old user died by suicide after the Robinhood app showed them a balance to the tune of negative $ 730,000. It turns out the balance wasn’t really a debt, but apparently a mid-trade options UI quirk.