The pandemic has had a lasting effect on mental health, causing largescale health paranoia. Four in ten adults in the U.S. have reported symptoms of anxiety or depressive disorder, up from just one in ten adults who reported these symptoms from January to June 2019. Left unresolved, these issues have implications on the long-term sustainability of a productive remote workforce as evidence suggests that 12.7% of all sickness absence days in the UK can be attributed to mental health conditions. Offering better mental health support in the workplace can save UK businesses up to £8 billion per year.
According to a survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management, 2 out of 3 employers say that maintaining employee morale during the pandemic has been a challenge, whilst one third of companies say they have found maintaining company culture difficult during the pandemic. The intrinsic shared cultural identity of an organisation defines public perception, dictates internal morale and influences the type of employees that they attract and the attitudes that those workers develop. A loss of face-to-face interaction has become the enemy of organisational culture. Morning icebreakers and regular virtual catchups cannot mimic the effect of the in-person ‘water-cooler’ talk that works to break up the day and give individuals a stimulating active mental break from their work.
Businesses reliance upon video conferencing software for all communications has taken its toll on workers. According to a July 2020 survey of 1500 respondents by FlexJobs and Mental Health America (MHA), 75% of people have experienced burnout at work, with 40% saying they’ve experienced burnout during the pandemic specifically. A lack of demarcation between home and work life is one attributing factor, as those in cramped conditions and with large families have no escapism from the monotony of everyday life. The current visual communication solutions do not feature the functionality to offer an escape from this. Subsequently, ‘zoom fatigue’ has become a well-documented and serious cause of burnout. Video meetings are not a natural way of communicating. Individuals vie for attention, lost in a sea of faces, creating an accepted norm that during working hours and beyond, teams exist solely in a digital dehumanised world.
Empowering Workers to take a break: The Ideal Solution
Any successful collaboration solution needs to address the negative impact that the pandemic and other work-related stresses have on the individual. To combat this, there needs to be functionality relating to wellbeing spaces. It is proven that these spaces help to alleviate the daily stresses of workers, therefore reducing absenteeism and increasing productivity, with 80 percent of US companies attesting to this in a Global Wellness Institute survey.
An immersive wellness experience can be achieved by playing soothing sounds and calming imagery. Staff should feel as though transported to a space that transcends their homogenized urban office surroundings and allows them to live in the moment, practicing mindfulness daily. Giving your team this focused time keeps them more engaged. Research has found that companies with engaged staff have higher earnings per share, outperforming peers by as much as 147%, whilst 59% of companies believe that workplace wellness can help reduce costs.
At Laduma, we believe that the new breed of Hybrid Workforce needs a new breed of Hybrid Workspace. One singular platform where you can bring all your favourite applications and tools with you to do your best work together.
We know that empowering your team and optimizing your assets is the key to doing this – prioritising space, people and process in everything that you do.
Our solution addresses the issue of space by transforming your meeting room walls into 360-degree immersive displays, where you can intuitively drag, drop, and resize content in any configuration you choose. Have everything you need always in view, on a laptop, phone, tablet or wall, helping you to improve your daily processes, maximising situational awareness and people performance.
To find out more about our digital workspace solution for the hybrid workforce and how it can benefit your organisation, request a demo.