Emergent Changes in Work Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Write an essay about the emergent changes in work practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Emergent Changes in Work Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic





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Emergent Changes in Work Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic

“COVID-19, are you going to be naughty or nice to me?” is a famous quote by Steven Magee. According to Yang et al. (2020), “The current coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak is a worldwide emergency, as its rapid spread and the high mortality rate has caused severe disruptions. The number of people infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2), the causative agent of COVID-19, is rapidly increasing worldwide. Patients with COVID-19 can develop pneumonia,1,2 severe symptoms of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), and multiple organ failure” (p.1). COVID-19 affected many sectors, and one of the sectors it affected is the workplace. All companies developed strategies that kept their employees safe and secure from the pandemic; This was done through implementing mandatory protocols such as social distancing, mask-wearing and increased sanitation procedures. Kniffin et al. (2019) also stated that “COVID-19 is both a global health crisis and an international economic threat; This led the business and industry shutdowns that were implemented and mandated across the world to curb the spread of the virus have generated a wide array of unique challenges for employees and employers” (5). The fear and stigma of COVID-19 led to low productivity because the employees struggle to focus due to the anxiety and fear of contracting the pandemic. According to Kniffin et al. (2019) “the impacts of COVID-19 on workers and workplaces across the globe have been dramatic; This broad review of prior research rooted in work and organizational psychology, and related fields, is intended to make sense of the implications for employees, teams, and work organizations” (4). According to Riva et al. (2021), “Employers are free to encourage employees to be vaccinated and their duties in complying with reasonable measures to ensure a safe working environment” (p.1). Because of the pandemic, many companies shifted to working remotely and adopting work-from-home policies to reduce the risks of their employees from contracting the virus; This has enabled the organization’s ability to hire diverse employees. The emergent changes in work practices that happened during the COVID-19 pandemic are that people started working from home and virtual teamwork.

What are The Emergent Changes in Work Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

Work from Home (WFH)

Working from home became a very popular work practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. Working from home is the process of employees working from the comfort of their home. According to Purwanto et al. (2020), “Work from Home (WFH) is now a dream of many people, especially for the current millennial generation does not need to wake up in the morning then, take a shower and get ready to go to the office by crashing the road jams that take up a lot of time” (2). While working from home, people turned to technology to enable communication. Zoom made it easier for people to hold meetings, and it was cheap because it only required internet connection. According to Kniffin et al. (2019), “A survey of 229 human resources (HR) departments showed that approximately one half of the companies had more than 80% of their employees working from home during early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and estimated substantial long-term increases for remote work after the pandemic” (p.5). O ne of the advantages of working from home is the flexibility it comes with it; This is because the employees can get the opportunity to work and also take care of their families. W orking from home is very beneficial because the children are taken care of. It is also advantageous because time is saved as people do not have to move from one place to another. Kniffin et al. (2019) also stated that “Yet as large numbers of workers are forced to WFH, many face challenges due to such fundamental issues as not having space in one’s home to attend to work; For example, employees who live with others also face a larger set of challenges than those who live alone because they need to navigate others’ space as well” (p.6). Thus, working from home became very popular during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Virtual Teamwork

Virtual Teamwork also became a very popular work practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic promoted teamwork among the different employees. Virtual teamwork means a number of individuals working together from different locations through video conferencing services. According to Rauer et al. (2019), “In today’s globalized world, international competencies and the ability to communicate effectively in global virtual teams are key workplace requirements” (p.1). Virtual teamwork enabled companies to hold meetings as a team. According to Kozlowski (2019), “Prior research shows that virtual teamwork tends to lack the communication richness available to face-to-face teams and that traditional teamwork problems such as conflict and coordination can escalate quickly” (p.6). Kozlowski (2019) also stated that “Increased team virtuality as a result of COVID-19 may also affect helping and pro-social behavior, and while physical distancing among coworkers may reduce helping behaviors in the near term, prior research has shown that people should be bolder to request help from others because people do tend to be more willing to help and give better quality help than is usually perhaps, especially during crises” (p.6). Thus, the COVID-19 pandemic is another emergent change in work practices that happened during the COVID-19 pandemic.



Thus, COVID-19 greatly influenced the workplace. The emergent changes in work practices that happened during the COVID-19 pandemic are that people started working from home and virtual teamwork. The COVID-19 pandemic encouraged employees to use technology in order to enable them to work remotely. Technology also enabled the employees to communicate with their employers and collaborate with other employees; This led to the development of Zoom, a video conferencing tool. COVID-19 also brought challenges in the workplace, for example, implementing protocols to ensure the safety and health of their employees. It also increased anxiety and stress among the employees, leading to low productivity. The COVID-19 pandemic taught us that companies should be ready to evolve and accommodate different methods in their workplaces.




Kniffin, K. M., Narayanan, J., Anseel, F., Antonakis, J., Ashford, S. P., Bakker, A. B., … & Vugt, M. V. (2021). COVID-19 and the workplace: Implications, issues, and insights for future research and action. American psychologist, 76(1), 63.

Purwanto, A., Asbari, M., Fahlevi, M., Mufid, A., Agistiawati, E., Cahyono, Y., & Suryani, P. (2020). Impact of work from home (WFH) on Indonesian teachers’ performance during the Covid-19 pandemic: An exploratory study. International Journal of Advanced Science and Technology, 29(5), 6235-6244.

Rauer, J. N., Kroiss, M., Kryvinska, N., Engelhardt-Nowitzki, C., & Aburaia, M. (2021). Cross-university virtual teamwork as a means of internationalization at home. The International Journal of Management Education, 19(3), 100512.

Riva, M. A., Paladino, M. E., Paleari, A., & Belingheri, M. (2022). Workplace COVID-19 vaccination, challenges and opportunities. Occupational Medicine, 72(4), 235-237.

Yang, L., Liu, S., Liu, J., Zhang, Z., Wan, X., Huang, B., … & Zhang, Y. (2020). COVID-19: immunopathogenesis and Immunotherapeutics. Signal transduction and targeted therapy, 5(1), 128.







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