Where have all the people gone?

Long time passing ……… You won’t be able to get the song out of your head now! My wife doesn’t believe anybody under 60 will know this song, really?! I am going to raise a lot more questions than answers regarding the changes that are taking place after Covid.

I speak to many people in a wide variety of sectors. It is not just haulage and care where employers are short of vital people resources; it seems to be everywhere. A lot of people in hospitality went to supermarkets during the pandemic and wherever you go, there seems to be a shortage of chefs and that is not just in the UK. I was in Amsterdam recently, they had exactly the same problems as we have, so it is not just due to Brexit either.

It seems that Covid has had a massive impact. It has given people time to think about what is important to them. Whilst working from home, many realised, they had a better work/life balance with the older generations thinking why do I want to go back to all of that “wasted time commuting”, and the younger generations wanting to return for their socialisation. A recent survey said that more than 40% of employees want to stay remote with over 60% want a hybrid approach to their days working

For the older workers furlough acted as a preview into retired life, it was a real-life assessment tool. It allowed candidates to understand if they would enjoy retired life of not. Has the older generation just dipped out and retired early or have some extended their retirement date owing to the fact that working from home is a lot easier for them? Some have retired early as they know they can afford it. Some have had difficulty finding new jobs – does age discrimination legislation really work? Retirement Coaching with Accredited Coach Neil Williams (nvwsolutions.co.uk) 

During Covid, 500,000 people between the ages of 50 and 64 have left their jobs. Surely, this must have left a real dent in knowledge and experience in a number of sectors. The Great Grey Resignation has impacted the professionals and associate professionals – including doctors, scientists, defence staff, people in manufacturing, transport and financial services. Only 15% lost their jobs. The rest chose to leave their jobs not feeling valued, wanting a change in lifestyle, their employer not being flexible enough, too much stress and simply not wanting to work anymore.

Has increased efficiency really worked in the private sector through working from home (WFH) and has WFH been such a disaster in the public sector (DVLC, passports etc)?

It seems that many people are considering changing their careers or sectors. Now it is not just about the role and salary but how often do they need to go into the office. In other words, how much flexibility does the job have. Career Coaching with Accredited Coach Neil Williams (nvwsolutions.co.uk) Older style management will have a real problem if they expect everybody to return to work in their offices full time. Yet how do those companies which decide to permanently WFH without an office, build a company culture?

People are moving far afield living in places like Cornwall as a gradual transition into retirement or they believe they can cope with the odd day travelling into the office. Portfolio careers including time spent abroad, dovetailing skiing, enjoying their holiday homes whilst still working to the hours they want to work is quite prevalent.

Families in their 30s and 40s with working from home can deal with childcare a lot easier by sharing drop off and pick up duties from school taking away the pressure of who is doing what when and having to rush back from commuting with transport so often letting you down. So, in reality all age groups have been impacted one way or another.

I wonder how many of these changes will stick in the long term? Without modern technology, we wouldn’t have been able to cope with Covid and WFH. “Teams” and “Zoom” have literally taken off,  with all of that travelling time being saved. Rapport can be built better face to face, how often will these meetings take place going forward?

As I said when I started more questions than answers and if I can help you work out the answers that are important to you, please get in touch with me neil@nvwsolutions.co.uk

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