Future Workplace is not Remote? Companies in Bay Area Gearing Back Up

Businesses in northern California are gearing back up as the number of COVID-19 cases continue to go down. With California having the lowest infection rate compared with any US state, global mobility professionals are now looking at rehiring. And the way it’s happening prompted HRZone Magazine to exclaim, “Where on earth are your employees located is the new HR lottery.”

Remote work opened up options for recruiters to hire on a national scale and those who don’t want to commit to moving yet but seeking the opportunity of working in northern California are embracing it. The catch: Work remotely for at least 2 to 4 months but move to northern California later as soon as the pandemic slows down.

And it could happen as the COVID-19 fatality rate has gone down by 30%. Even if most employees are on a hybrid workforce setup — onsite and remote or fully remote, more people will eventually come to work, maybe not on a daily basis but even more regularly, which then makes on-site work a thing again, a thing that no one is talking about because the narrative has been focused on remote work.

Unlike previous reports, some think the future workplace will be less remote than many forecasted. Yes, the torrent of reports the past few months predicted a hybrid work system but humans will always need that in-person contact and connection to make things work. If the virus and its variants die down dramatically, the more companies will want employees to come to work and even those working remotely, could be open to the idea as well, if they can offer them safety and other perks. Remember the perk of being able to get free 3-full meals? Google had these all around its campuses, not to mention recreation activities and laundry services. It’d be a pity if all these went away.

So with things normalizing, recruiters will need to be ready to act fast as businesses open up. A Linkedin survey said that the no. 1 skill for recruiters to embrace in 2021 is adaptability. Many focused on personal development at the height of the pandemic, training themselves for work that involves virtual interviewing and onboarding. It’s time to adapt those new skills they learned in their less hectic days.

Below are some tips that can help recruiters in the rush to get new talents in northern California, according to SHRM.

  1. Find your target market. Offering employee referral incentives could go a long way but having senior-level executives serve as spokespersons can give recruiters the credibility to reach out to new potential candidates. 
  2. Differentiate what you offer. A great workplace culture is more important than ever for applicants, as more employees are seeking a better quality of life and better-run company these days after the pandemic. Having the resources to mentor new employees, learning on one’s own and being accessible to different types of talents will translate well in any organization. Even better, a company leader that offers access to their time and is looked up as a role model is critical. It’s not just the intention, but an employee will appreciate transparency across the organization. A work culture that promotes reskilling and openness to diversity and inclusion can make a big difference.
  3. Create a great candidate experience. Training HR, recruiters and hiring managers are good first steps but if one is to compete for talents, global mobility professionals and employers need to improve how they screen and interview candidates: keeping them informed and following up fast matters a lot. It’s even better if top-level executives are part of the interview process, as this helps applicants establish trust with the company and the employees. 
  4. Manage expectations for all. One may have to invest more time explaining what a company can do for their recruits. Because even with a competitive offer, a company may not seem as appealing to candidates who think they can apply anywhere now, no matter where they are, not thinking if they will be asked to work on-site, which should be explained clearly to them.

Talents can now come from basically anywhere in the States and enjoy the fact they can get jobs in big tech companies — of course, until they’re asked to come to the Bay Area offices when the pandemic dies down. Also, mobility managers need to be prepared to offer work to global talents in light of easing travel restrictions.