Are we prepared for the work-from-home economy?

May 12, 2020 James Hayward

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrust a new paradigm of work upon us. Business is getting done wherever it can these days as we’re all, for the time being at least, adjusting and learning how to operate in a fully remote working environment. 

So it begs the question: what comes next? Will office life return as normal when this crisis is over? Or will the radical change in the way we work endure? And if it does, are businesses ready to meet the digital standards required to facilitate this?

Will remote work be the future of work? 

An estimated 1.7 billion people have been ordered to stay at home to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus. 

The Guardian

Yet many are unable to do so. In the US only one in four people have a job they can do from home.  

Bureau of Labor Statistics

While in the UK, 54 percent of workers claim they’re unable to do their job from home.  


In many cases it’s because companies fail to provide their staff with adequate technology to get the job done from home. For example, in the UK, 21 percent are unable to connect to their company’s IT system, 18 percent struggle with a slow or old home PC, while 17 percent have issues because with a slow internet connection. 

Workplace Insight

Technology isn’t just an issue for employees working from home. It’s estimated that 1.8 billion working hours are wasted every year because the technology workers are asked to use isn’t good enough.

City AM

While only 16% of workers believe the technology their company has invested in has improved their performance. 


Yet with 75 percent of CFOs anticipating shifting a portion of their office based workforce to a remote schedule permanently it begs the question whether companies have the technology in place to facilitate this shift. 


Looking towards the future of work

The coming weeks and months will define the future of how we work. And debates will continue to rage about whether we’ll return to the office or not. 

But maybe the real question is are businesses ready to go all in on digital transformation once and for all to ensure business continuity under any circumstances? And, if they are, is enterprise technology up to standard required to make this happen?  

We invited several experts to answer this question and debate the future of global trade with us. Check out what they had to say.


About the Author

James Hayward

James is a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Tradeshift, focused on crafting compelling stories that provide supply chain professionals with unique insights and actionable advice on how to take their organization to the next level. A journalist by trade, James was previously the Global Editor at Treasury Today magazine.

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