How we are working remotely in a deadline driven industry
By Nelly Nawabi
Just like millions of
people around the world, working from home or the ‘virtual office’ has become
the new norm. The coronavirus pandemic has brought about a surge of uncertainty
and disruption for all of us, and the consensus that we hear is that we can’t
help but feel dispirited and irked to be disconnected from our peers.
There’s also the age old,
how can I get any work done with the distractions all around? Home is a place
of relaxation and enjoyment, not a work zone. But the coronavirus has changed
our working lives. Especially for those who now need to homeschool their
children or give more attention to their beloved pets.
We decided to put this to
the test and find out what our community is experiencing. While we are hearing
a lot of doom and gloom in the news and concerns about working from home, the
fact is that technological advancement has helped workers retain their job.
Plus staying in touch with loved ones.
Our recent Twitter poll found
over 70% of people WFH are learning it is either ‘easier to manage’ or ‘no different’
than from their office. A staggering statistic when we think about how large
the building and construction industry is as a whole and the future for the
industry in a post-COVID environment.
DBEI also spoke with a
quantity surveyor from Melbourne on how she’s working from home during the
Nirvana Rampersad said the
experience overall has been “manageable” and that she’s adapted to the change. “In
terms of social distancing, it was challenging initially,” she said.
“Meetings were moved to
online platforms. Also, where access to site was not practical, inspections
were carried out virtually. Technology has proven to be very effective in
enabling us to work remotely,” she said
And while productivity
remains to be a concern for most people, Rampersad said she stays organized and
focused by making a to-do list at the start of each day.
“I make sure that I’m on
top of project deadlines and communicating with my team on a regular basis,” she
said. “I stay connected with them via Microsoft Teams.”
Many people across the
nation have expressed feeling lonely in this new working life. Rampersad said
she’s enjoying the flexibility.
“Now that I don’t have to
travel to the office which took up an hour of my day, I can use the time to do
other things,” she said. “I eventually adapted to the new ways of working and I
can continue working remotely if I have to.”
“I’ve been catching up on
reading a few books and attending webinars for my continuous professional
When asked what tips she
had to offer industry members, Rampersad mentioned playing light music in the
background and doing daily exercise.
Will this norm be the
future of our workforce? Nobody knows for sure, but the very fact that we as a
community have embraced this change and are maintaining and even increasing
productivity suggests that we will make it out of this for the better.