Since early February, millions of Chinese office workers have hunkered down at their home office desks (or reclined on their living room couches), trying out the concept of working from home.
The BBC reports that some workers begrudgingly contend with intrusive bosses who believe that employees cannot be trusted to use their time wisely. Excessive check-ins punctuated their days. Yet others seem to appreciate the work from home experience, and find that they’re exceedingly more productive in the quiet of their own environments.
Research reports show that 51% of Chinese enterprises retain a flexible work policy. In the US, that number is 69%. However, each company in the research study was left to define ‘flexible’ for itself, meaning that no one’s crystal clear on how much flexibility there really is or isn’t.
In China, corporate KPIs are often understood in relation to attendance. “The ‘work-from-home’ style goes against their belief of how employees should be managed”
However, despite the traditionally conservative corporate culture, technological marvels might help HR teams and others to see things in a new light. Apps like WeChat facilitate high levels of accelerated collaboration.
A major downside, however, is that the 996 work culture (where tech and start-up employees work from 9am-6pm everyday, including on at least one day of the weekend) could become even more rampant.
For more on the remote work life, visit the BBC.