In these uncertain times we are all looking at how we work differently, and perhaps/hopefully a lot of these changes will remain in place for longer regardless of how much normality returns.
Working from home has in all honesty been so much nicer than working at an office, and there is so much at the office that we really don't need. We are lucky in the sense that there is space at home to work without getting under someone else's feet (or someone else getting under yours). There are only three real pains in the scenario:-
1) Whilst we can back up data to an outside server, we are not set up to back up to our in-house server.
2) Most of our equipment is the same for each Surveyor so they can be solo teams, but there are a few items where we had to introduce a 'dead drop' leaving at least 24 hours between drop off and collection, along with good wipe down! At least in the early stages - now it is more a case of remember how the kits works!
3) We are still paying for office space - which is in essence a fancy lok'n'store now!
Hardly difficult problems to overcome if we decided to follow this working style long term as a matter of choice. Software at the moment works well thanks to the consideration of Apps In CAD to provide 30 day license free of charge to supplement our existing license (on a dongle!). This might be something that stays in future, or we revert to an on-line license only. There might also be a few new laptops in the offing to make working remotely easier, but these are relatively small costs for a company to bare.
The situation has also provided the gift of time to train on something new, or enhance existing knowledge. The cost of this gift is yet to fully ascertained, but the removal of financial worry (in the short term at least) makes a massive difference and we can only hope those who can use any surplus to invest in companies who might need that little bit more support.
Looking at the books currently with the option of furlough & small business grants we are still in good financial stead, and there will be a tipping point between coming out with the books better than when we left them, and carrying a small financial burden ourselves for the good of all the staff. This in itself seems wrong so as company we will commit to ensure any financial benefit we have gained as a result of circumstance is redirected to those who need it most - we'll put that one down to a staff vote with a couple of options!
As Covid-19 progresses, and we see glimmers of hope in Italy and Spain were limited persons/companies are allowed back to work, there is the start of consideration about our return to work - whilst Surveying is part of construction there has never been any doubt that ceasing site activities was (and is) the right option. Regardless of Government advice this was a MORAL decision - whilst 'we could' the debate was whether 'we should'! Some thought they should continue so you must respect that decision if it can be justified, but the majority knew they had an obligation to the wider community not to continue. Whatever your decision there is no wrong or right answer as there is no way to tell what might have happened if things were done differently.
What will you do differently once this is over (or under some semblance of control?)
Work Less - Spend More Time with the Family - Stop Putting Off Those Jobs Around the House - Expand the Business - Promote Home Working - Spilt Your Profits more between Investments/Savings/Dividends to better cover the 'What If Scenario' - Build Up an Emergency Kit Supply - Read More Books - Take More Walks - Waste Less Food
The silver lining here could be a better and strong sense of community, and appreciation for the world we live in. What will you do differently?