Although the lockdown has been gradually eased but not every company is fully back to the 9-5 routine. There are many ways through which various employees have started to feel the pain, understand the sacrifices and appreciate efforts put into the making the workplace comfortable for their employees.
The lockdown necessitated the shutdown of many physical office locations and the era of Work from Home began. I remembered some years ago, MTN Nigeria conducted internal user acceptance testing for a product called Small Office, Home Office (SOHO). One could have assumed that such a product foresaw this period that we are in. The lockdown saw many residential homes became the beehive of daily activities.
For those in the creative unit of many companies, they are required to produce graphics or videos with very high resolutions and they are to share it through e-mail, remember they do not have the option of taking the creative by flash drive currently, upload the document before finally getting it out with the prayer that there should be little or no review, which is almost impossible.
The abundance of various virtual meeting apps have also come into the mix; prior to now, everyone is expected to move from one location to another for a meeting but now physical distancing rules subsist. There are meetings of various lengths which is done with the use of data. Interestingly, these meetings are not time-bound; neither is it limited in terms of duration.
The debate about the expensive cost of data in Nigeria has been brought a close with this current reality. Many of those involved in that debate had a routine that has changed now. They were those that use their mobile data sparingly- early in the morning till they get to work when they will connect with the data of the office and on their return trip to the house and on weekends. However, the change in demand for data from official to school’s e-learning is now in vogue.
The mobile telephony companies are really smiling to the bank and I am sure many Internet Service Providers who serve the corporate bodies would be losing their calm with the endless Work for Home. Their employees might not have been exempted from the various job cuts in town.
What many people had taken for granted for many years, the streaming of music on youtube; the download of movies; the perusal of social media intermittently are now being done at one’s expense. It is a known fact, that some companies have given limited access or totally blocked social media access to her staffers.
As the world keep battling for survival, everyone is looking for ways of trimming their expenses but the need for data keeps hiking. Unfortunately, some networks would not make you access the internet once you have 100MB left because the more your subscription, the better for them.
A friend was trying to justify the money spent on data, the person said it is a substitution for her monthly transport fare but this is relative. There are some people whose office is not far from their residence, this assumption might not work for them. Equally, the fare of someone who fuels the car cannot be compared to the person who join commercial vehicles; not even at this time that the cost of transportation had doubled.
The data game continues, the Work from Home options will become better explored by many employees because this mode of work had reduced some running cost on their own part. The future of work keeps unfolding and many things that were never anticipated have become the reality. As we keep exploring the new world order, data consciousness cannot be taken away from the mind of the employee and am sure the employees are glad that people can place premium on data.