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Going forward: remote working in the post-COVID-19 era

Olatunji David Adekoya (Royal Docks School of Business and Law, University of East London, London, UK) (Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK)
Toyin Ajibade Adisa (Royal Docks School of Business and Law, University of East London, London, UK)
Opeoluwa Aiyenitaju (Department of Information, System and Strategy, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK)

Employee Relations

ISSN: 0142-5455

Article publication date: 24 May 2022

Issue publication date: 23 September 2022

6240

Abstract

Purpose

The urgent and unexpected transition to remote working during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic calls for an increased focus on the contemporary workplace, especially for the post-COVID-19 era. While most studies undertaken during the pandemic have focused on the consequences of remote working, this study, using the UK as the research context, focuses on the factors that may facilitate the effectiveness of remote working in the post-COVID-19 era from the perspectives of employees and employers.

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses the interpretivist philosophical perspective to understand the study participants' subjective meanings and experiences. It utilises a qualitative approach, specifically data drawn from the semi-structured interviews of 31 participants.

Findings

The study highlights the factors that may facilitate the effectiveness of remote working in the post-COVID-19 era. Flexible working preferences, smart working practices, self-discipline, and leadership roles and expectations emerge as enablers of remote working among the participants. It is evident from the study’s findings that both employers and employees have expectations about remote working conditions.

Originality/value

Due to the changing work environment, where remote working is becoming more acceptable, this study focuses on a salient topic that examines how remote working may be facilitated effectively in the post-COVID-19 era. Thus, it makes predictions concerning the future of remote working post-COVID-19. It also emphasises that employers and employees have developed clear expectations about facilitating remote working and seek to meet these expectations by implementing various strategies.

Keywords

Citation

Adekoya, O.D., Adisa, T.A. and Aiyenitaju, O. (2022), "Going forward: remote working in the post-COVID-19 era", Employee Relations, Vol. 44 No. 6, pp. 1410-1427. https://doi.org/10.1108/ER-04-2021-0161

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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