Remote-working: Stax advocates wider adoption | Sunday Observer

Remote-working: Stax advocates wider adoption

7 February, 2021

Stax Inc., a  global management consulting firm, observes that delaying digitisation during the pandemic era would present substantial drawbacks for Sri Lankan companies as they would lack the capacity to compete globally. By adopting digitisation, Stax Inc. articulates that businesses would soon learn that customers are no longer confined to the geography of Sri Lanka and could thus improve their scope of clientele and operations.  Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, many prominent Sri Lankan companies are yet to enable systems and processes to empower digitalisation in their operations.To do so, a paradigm shift would have to encompass internal and customer-facing processes, while instigating paperless concepts as a part of Sri Lanka’s operating culture. This way, businesses will be able to increase efficiency while boosting their performance, productivity and profits.  Observations by Stax Inc. also found that some organisations are wary to mandate remote working and digital processes due to the generation mix and bias at management level. To overcome this, education and effective training must become a key element with demonstrable results, as change also requires time. Digital signatures and documentation are still seldom used in Sri Lanka, whereas they are commonplace in developed markets such as the UK, by contributing to substantial savings in time, energy, emissions and efficiency. 

Outlining Stax’s learnings, Dr. Rasitha Wickramasinghe said, “Many companies have inculcated a ‘we have to get into the office’ mindset. Stax has gone the other way and we are saying “we can work from home”. Our default mode is to work from home, and whenever we need to, we will come to office.

Even according to pre-covid studies in developed markets, it is proven that people express satisfaction when remote working. Performance and productivity have been higher than when physically commuting daily to work. We should see this as an opportunity to enable remote working as our default mode.”

“Globally, 80% of the workforce are working remotely. It’s ironic for Sri Lanka, where people spend anywhere between two to four hours commuting; that is a huge loss of productivity along with the harm done to the environment,” he said.

However, it is noted that remote working would not be a valid concept for every industry and some models would entail only a percentage of its staff to work remotely. Only a few solutions can be made to work 100% remote and organisations would need to look at hybrid models. 

Remote working entails the creation of high-trust networks within organisations, and it will enable corporate Sri Lanka to ramp up efficiency and take on new global and local markets with motivated employees.