From Teleworking to Smart Working: Past and future of the Smart Working

From teleworking to agile work methodology: this is the path taken by a medium company, in the insurance industry, with whom we have had the pleasure of working for several months.

Teleworking was a practice in use in this organization for the latest years.

This form of arranging the way of people work was following the labour law, in its strictest sense: a home based working location responsive to the regulation. Moreover, the employees go to the office for a limited amount of time, in general twice a month.

This regulation is not inline anymore with the nowadays needs (and opportunities).

Meanwhile, the technological progress is sustaining the fast paced change and people’s emerging needs. Thus, the organizational rigidity can be assuaged and become more flexible.

Since the initial steps of this organizational change process, we went through an assessment phase with the support of the Management Committee, which has exposed us the situation concerns and the new requirements.

The outcome were clear: the will to improve organizational processes, the propensity for innovation and openness towards a spread organizational improvement, not necessarily a radical and institutional change.

A process of research-action was realised: our client’s vision and organizational needs analysis to support the new organizational change shaping. In fact, we have started to figure out if telecommuting could live with the big innovation introduced by the Smart Working methodology.

Antithesis or continuity? Past or future?

Several tools were used to better assess overall company’s needs and readiness level to sustain the change. In particular, Smart Index Survey was used. This tool helps understanding organizational readiness to implement Smart Working and it was co-created by Microsoft and Variazioni. Our tool is available for free here.  Try it now! 

The assessment phase has continued with a deep company’s analysis. A specific survey tailored survey was created to investigate the employees’ needs, expectations, possible limits and barriers created by teleworking as well as strengths. 

Last but not least, the research-action process has ended with target-specific interviews and focus group. Both teleworkers and non-teleworkers were involved in this stage, as well as managers.

This research-action phase was a very complex and delicate work! In fact, there were assessed opposing perceptions, opinions mixed with concrete facts, emerging beliefs that the winning approach to the work still remain the traditional office.

Anyway, Variazioni took up this challenge! In light of the numerous data collected and the wealth of corporate assets carried by all the stakeholders involved, Variazioni has built and presented to the Steering Committee a detailed report about the past, present and possible future of the way of working in this organization.

In fact, from the complexities, new opportunities were caught up by Variazioni. From this assessment and evaluation phase a first answers to organizational needs was provided. All the outcomes were thus collected in order to create a first policy proposal, which reviewed as a counterweight to teleworking, the introduction of agile working methodologies.

Is emerging the desire to improve the organization, even in your reality? Have you considered to focus on innovation and openness towards an organizational improvement process?  If the answer is yes, and you would like to explore more about this topic, please contact us. Variazioni can guide your organization towards the future of work, by investigating with you the present context, the expressed and unexpressed needs, thanks to its tailored training and consulting solutions.

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