Remote work got another unintentional boost.
A friend of mine posted this link on Facebook today, and it shows calculations done to help people understand how long one’s particular state in the US that people will have to be in a “shelter in place”, and at what week is the most critical to follow this to ensure that their state can handle the crisis. According to this, at this writing (March 22, 2020), the critical week for my state is this coming week.
Here’s the link:
So, depending on where you live (speaking of just about everywhere in the US), it’s going to be a while before we are free to roam around and interact like we did before.
This pushes the agenda of remote work even more. So many positions have been forced home, much sooner than anyone would have initially predicted. This is also forcing many companies to take a deep look at to how remote work affects their bottom line. Are they still able to function from home for the long haul? And what does that mean once we are allowed to return to “normal”? There’s going to be a big shift for how business is done going forward during and after this pandemic.
Of course, advocates of remote work like myself are hoping that there will be positive inroads that will have companies create and continue more remote work positions. However, we don’t know that for sure. None of us can read a crystal ball to know how all of this will fall out. For some companies, it might actually be a bad move after all. Or, some will see how their infrastructure truly needs to support more of this work flexibility.
This is a really unstable time for everyone on multiple fronts–employment is just one aspect. Supply chain to sustain us all is important. Health of everyone is important. The link above shows how mathematically it makes SO much sense to respect and follow the “shelter-in-place” orders. I live in one of the earliest states that already has that in place. What will happen next? None of us really knows, but we can all try to work with what we have, support each other by staying home when possible, and help slow this monstrous disease. I already have one friend in another state who has been confirmed to have it; she’s stable enough to quarantine and heal at home. I have two friends with coronavirus who are a couple counties away from me; the mother is in the hospital while her daughter is healing at home, and they aren’t sure if the father has it as well. I have another friend whose nephew–a doctor–has contracted the disease. It’s almost like the Kevin Bacon game. Eventually, we’ll all know at least one person who has contracted it, but we need to ensure that the number of people who survive it–whether they contract it or not–stays as high as possible.
Be safe everyone! Above all else remember that this, too, shall pass. Additionally, as I’ve reminded a lot of people, the human race is adaptable. We can all adapt as we need to in order to push through this.
(ETA: As of 24 March 2020, I had to edit this a bit–thank you synergistech for catching that slight error! And also, the friends a couple counties away from me–it’s been confirmed that all three have COVID19. The mother and father are in the hospital, while the daughter is at home, even though she has it as well. These are not easy times! Let’s keep those infection numbers down!)
2 thoughts on “We all have to be in this for the long haul.”
I appreciate your thoughts on the pandemic’s implications for remote work, and share your hope that it becomes the default mode for many. I have just one tech writer-like nit, and that’s that I hope you meant the opposite when you wrote “we need to ensure that the number of people who survive it–whether they contract it or not–stays as low as possible.”
OMG, yes! Thank you for catching that. That’s what happens when you try to get something out quickly and don’t proof it as well as you should! I’ll fix that now!