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Benefits of face-to-face working post-COVID-19

By Jack Campbell | |5 minute read
Benefits Of Face To Face Working Post Covid 19

While flexible working can have its merits in providing better wellbeing and work/life balance, there are some areas of business that benefit from a more personal approach.

The push to get workers back into the office may cause some controversy, yet according to CampusQ’s chief executive, Alan Manly, we should embrace the benefits of face-to-face work.

“The idiom ‘putting a face to a name’ is almost a greeting when having heard of a person and meeting them for the first time face to face. Meeting someone in person is dramatically different to seeing a face peeking out of a Zoom beehive,” he said.

“There is a certain vibe about everyone. The gait, the stance, the smile and exchange of pleasantries upon greeting. Face-to-face working allows everyone to pick up on non-verbal communication that so often sets the scene for what behaviour is expected from team members in the workplace.”

There is a real challenge in getting workers to comply. While working-from-home statistics have seen a slight decrease in the offset of the pandemic, it is still an extremely popular option.

Commenting on the trend in a release at the end of 2023, Bjorn Jarvis, Australian Bureau of Statistics head of labour statistics, said: “Prior to the pandemic, the percentage of employed people working from home regularly had been steadily increasing by around a percentage point every two years. It jumped by around 8 percentage points between August 2019 and August 2021, from around 32 to 40 per cent, when the restrictions around the Delta variant were in effect across much of south-east Australia.”

“Our latest data, for August 2023, shows that 37 per cent of Australians work from home regularly. While this was down from around 40 per cent in 2021, it was still 5 percentage points above the pre-pandemic level, showing that many of the changes in behaviour and working arrangements have continued beyond the pandemic.”

The problem is getting people back into the office without alienating them. Hybrid working has proven to be a happy medium between employers and employees and may just be here to stay.

“Productivity that is so dependent on teamwork was stable during the COVID-19 lockdowns,” Manly said. “It is now years past COVID-19, and business needs have changed along with the team members.”

“Teamwork requires that you know who you are working with. You will learn more about a person in one day at the office and two cups of coffee [than] months of controlled video, often with the audio fading in and out and video blurred or off with a dog barking in the background. Team leaders can always declare the need for a team meeting based on a meaningful purpose leading to a business goal. The end result seems to be two days at home and three days in the office for team liaison/work.”

Another pressing issue for employers is the current state of the job market. Many agree that it is still a candidates’ market, and employers are scrambling to secure skilled workers.

However, Manly believes these attitudes could be a detriment to employees and see more and more employers look elsewhere for talent.

“In an ever-shrinking world, workers do not always have to be in the same city as the customer. Call centres are famous for being offshore. Many jobs are [threatened] by offshoring. Some caution may be wise in what demands are made. Further, for tasks that must be onsite, automation is always only a few robots or the like away for usually partial replacement. The employer of today must evaluate the social value of an onsite employee. Once having made that evaluation, mutual benefit should promote a satisfactory outcome for all parties, being the customer, the staff and the employer,” Manly said.



Benefits include any additional incentives that encourage working a little bit more to obtain outcomes, foster a feeling of teamwork, or increase satisfaction at work. Small incentives may have a big impact on motivation. The advantages build on financial rewards to promote your business as a desirable employer.

Hybrid working

In a hybrid work environment, individuals are allowed to work from a different location occasionally but are still required to come into the office at least once a week. With the phrase "hybrid workplace," which denotes an office that may accommodate interactions between in-person and remote workers, "hybrid work" can also refer to a physical location.

Remote working

Professionals can use remote work as a working method to do business away from a regular office setting. It is predicated on the idea that work need not be carried out in a certain location to be successful.

Jack Campbell

Jack Campbell

Jack is the editor at HR Leader.