The pandemic has brought innumerable changes to our lives. The global lockdowns not only affected economies but also the world of work. While remote work used to be rare, it has become the recommended setup. Small, midsized, and large companies who used to require their employees to come into the office all found ways to embrace remote ways of doing business.
Instead of holding face-to-face meetings, online meetings and gatherings became the norm. The 9 to 5 crowd were pleasantly surprised to find that appraisals, job interviews, status updates, and catch-ups could all be done virtually without negatively impacting organizations.
With remote work becoming the new normal, employees and employers all over the world are discovering its benefits. Many are left questioning if previous office-based work should be reinstated once the global health crisis ends.
While some are more conservative and less flexible than others on the matter, everyone has an opinion. In this article, we talk about what remote work is, its benefits to employees and employers, how it has evolved, and its future.
Remote work or telecommuting is a working style that gives workers the freedom to work outside of traditional work environments. The concept of remote work is based on the idea that the ability to perform job-related tasks isn’t confined to a specific office or building.
While remote work arrangements were more of an exception and a rarity before the pandemic, the last few years have seen more managers and employers slowly integrate more flexible working conditions for their employees. Such measures include allowing employees to work from home on certain days of the week, implementing 4-day workweeks, and granting flexible working hours.
The global pandemic has forcibly accelerated these changes with the exception of frontline workers who need to continue physically reporting to work to perform their duties.
Remote work allows employees more freedom and more time. Instead of spending time in daily commutes and staying in the office for a fixed number of hours everyday, they can set their own hours, take breaks when necessary, and cut down on costs from commuting and buying meals outside.
Workers who enjoy this flexibility have more time for family, extracurricular activities, and other non-work-related priorities.
Since work isn’t confined to a certain location, it’s easier for them to take vacations, work in places where they feel most productive, and take their job with them wherever they go.
Commuting every day and working long hours in front of a desk without much movement impacts our health. By freeing workers from long commutes and stuffy desk jobs, remote employees can more easily pursue healthier habits.
Whether it’s by going to a gym in between tasks, having more time to prepare healthier home-cooked meals, or just getting up and moving around, such practices are easier to integrate when people don’t need to stay in an office or spend time commuting.
With better work-life balance comes a renewed passion for the job. When employees don’t feel constantly stressed and tired, it’s inevitable that they’ll report to work with greater interest and appreciation.
Since remote work also requires a certain amount of trust between workers and their employers, employees feel more confident and capable of performing their duties.
Lower productivity is one of the primary concerns of employers who are hesitant to shift to a work-from-home arrangement. However, this rationale is contrary to research findings. According to a 2-year study of over 800,000 employees belonging to Fortune 500 companies, most people reported the same or even higher productivity levels when working from home.
Yet another study conducted by Stanford University professor Nicholas Bloom found that remote employees are 13.5% more productive than employees who reported for work. They also took less breaks, less time off, and less sick days.
When employees have more control over their working environment, they can create workplace settings that enable them to perform at their best. Whether it’s loud music, no music, working from a bed, a desk, or a coffee shop, in pajamas or while on a treadmill, it’s up to them.
How much have employers saved in overhead costs since the lockdown started? With employees working from home, employers no longer incur costs like leasing a building, paying electric and water bills among other expenses.
Additionally, many remote workers use their own equipment like laptops and other devices for work. It’s a great cost-saving solution.
This is another misconception that traditional management has about remote work. On the contrary, the same Stanford University study we cited earlier also reports that remote workers are 9% more engaged with their jobs and 50% less likely to resign.
Higher engagement rates among remote workers tie in with the other advantages we mentioned in this article. It follows that if employees have more flexibility, passion, and are healthier, they would naturally be more productive and engaged in their jobs.
Of course, remote or otherwise, engagement still needs some direction and initiatives from management, but there are ways to address the issue if you have a remote setup. The point is a remote workforce doesn’t necessarily mean lower engagement. In fact, it may have the opposite effect and can improve it.
For the most part and before the lockdown, remote work and its benefits were largely untapped, particularly when it came to large corporations. Quarantine and safety measures greatly sped up their rollout of flexible work arrangements.
It probably came as a surprise when 85% of business owners noticed greater operational efficiency among their remote workers.
Additionally, 75% of remote employees stated that the ability to work from home has afforded them better work-life balance.
While not all professions can be done remotely, there are still many office-based jobs where remote arrangements bear exploring. However, if the effectiveness of a remote workforce is measured in terms of engagement, productivity, employee well-being, cost-efficiency, and higher retention rates, then remote work is certainly effective.
Technology has been a catalyst for the growth of remote work. The ability to send and share emails, files, pictures, videos, and other materials instantly has created a borderless workplace where employees and their managers need not sit in the same building, city, or even country in order to work together.
As technology has become cheaper and more accessible for everyone, mobile phones, laptops, imaging technology, and the wide variety of applications have allowed more people to participate in a digital-driven world.
Technology’s pervasiveness has often left us constantly connected to one another and has removed the demarcation between work and non-working hours. This is perhaps more common with remote workers since their managers may work in different time zones or may not have clear or fixed ideas about their working hours.
After the COVID-19 health crisis hit, the number of Americans working from home jumped from 17% to 44%. Undoubtedly, the pandemic has left an indelible mark on the traditional work culture and our concept of work.
The popularity of remote work is expected to continue post-pandemic. In fact, more than half of US employees who are currently working from home expressed the desire to continue with their current work from home arrangements even after the health crisis is resolved.
Upwork, a job site that connects employers with remote freelance workers, predicts that the number of US remote workers will grow to 36.2 million by 2025, an 87% increase compared to pre-pandemic levels.
It’s expected that developments in AI, the release of new tools and equipment, and applications that foster collaboration across distances will continue to drive the growth of remote work opportunities. While it’s impossible to predict the extent to which large traditional companies will adopt work from home practices after the pandemic, it’s clear that remote work is here to stay and will only continue to grow.
Interested in Nursing? Everything You Need to Know to Make the Career Your Own
Nursing is an excellent career to consider, regardless of whether you are preparing for your first career or you are next. With a very high growth rate, high wages, and many unique career opportunities both within and outside of the health industry, there are many excellent reasons to get started as a nurse today.
There are, of course, things you need to be aware of before you jump headfirst. Going in with the right expectation and having your career planned out in advance can help ensure that you continue to enjoy a work/life balance that suits you and your needs. There are many different roles available for RNs and several excellent specializations for those who earn their MSN.
If you are a natural carer and firmly believe that healthcare should start with the patient rather than the medicine, then nursing can be the perfect career for you. There are so many different roles out there that you will be able to find one that you are passionate about and one that allows you to care for your health, your family, and yourself.
Burnout in nursing is a consequence of the nursing shortage, not the nursing itself. There are also many different ways that you can take your nursing career outside of healthcare if that is something that you need for your health and sense of fulfillment.
Your job, at the end of the day, after all, will be in human health. You can therefore work wherever there are people and the budget for a nurse on the health and safety team. With so many fun and exciting options, you will always have a choice and the ability to adapt to your career as your progress and your priorities change.
Do You Have What It Takes to Become a Nurse?
Not everyone has what it takes to become a nurse, or at least not what it takes to become a high-level nurse. APRNs are highly specialized and trained, but it isn’t easy to tackle a BSN and then MSN or higher (and often while you continue to work). The additional training is what pushes your career towards the equivalent of physicians in some cases, and if you are someone that is self-motivated, dedicated, and ready to put in the work, you can really make nursing your own.
As for whether you are a good fit for nursing in the first place? If you are a natural carer, compassionate, and are the person who does the job that others are too scared to do for any reason, chances are you are a good fit to become a nurse. At the end of the day, if nursing is calling to you, answer it. With so many different options and ways to take your nursing career, you can and will find the perfect fit for you.
The Levels of Nursing
There are several levels of nursing and even types of nurses. Technically you can jump right into becoming an RN by earning an associate’s degree in nursing or, more likely today, a bachelor of science in nursing. If your goal is to become an APRN then this is the best route to take, as you cannot work your way up in nursing. Instead there is a course, test, and license you must earn at every level.
- Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)
- Licensed Nurse Practitioner (LNP)
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN)
Top Nursing Careers to Consider
You can work as an RN in many different settings, but if you want to do more for your career and really control where you work, what you do in a day, and who you work with, then you will want to earn an MSN at least and become an APRN. APRN nurses regularly make six-figure salaries and have higher job satisfaction than RNs. Though there are many great options, top APRN positions are some of the best options to consider today:
Family Nurse Practitioner
One of the most popular APRN and NP positions to date is that of the family nurse practitioner. Around 65% of all NPs are FNPs, and the role is massively growing. Nurse Practitioners are expected to grow by around 52% by 2029. In comparison, all job roles are only expected to see a 4% growth.
Family Nurse Practitioners are consistently ranked in the top ten of healthcare jobs and even in the top ten of jobs overall. They work with a variety of health concerns and patients and provide essential primary care on either an unsupervised or supervised basis, depending on what state they are in. In some states, you can even open and manage your own clinic as an FNP.
One of the biggest challenges in addressing the nursing shortage on the home front is a lack of educators. With a lack of educators in both academic and in clinical settings, there will forever be a cap on how many nurses can be certified in a year. If you want to make a big difference while stepping away from hands-on healthcare, then working as a nurse educator is the perfect way to go.
Nurse midwives are seeing a big resurgence in the United States – and for a good reason. Countries that rely on APRN midwives have lower mother mortality rates and generally more patient-focused care that translates into a better experience overall. Between that and the rise of alternative birthing options like water births, midwives are becoming more popular and more important in family planning.
Mental Health/Psychology Nurse
If you want to help those with their mental health and currently have a nursing degree, then further your specialization into psychology and mental health. Nurses are essential in this role and work in a variety of settings, from clinics to rehabilitation centers to even one-on-one with their patients.
Entertainment Set Nurse
You will find health and safety teams on movie and television sets and at music festivals alike. If you have a passion for the entertainment industry but feel that calling for nursing, then combine them. You can be the go-to person for whenever there is an injury onset or can be one of the key figures that work with health and safety experts to ensure that the environment is safe and that everyone is prepared for a worst-case scenario.
How to Make Your Nursing Career Your Own
There are a few key ways to make your nursing career your own.
Pay Attention to Legislation Changes and the eNLC
One of the easiest ways to continually make the best decision for your career is to pay attention to any changes to the legislation in your state and also your state’s position in the eNLC. A great example of this is how different the family nurse practitioner depends on which state you operate in. If you are an FNP in California at the moment, for example, you have restricted privileges and must work under a physician. In other states, however, like Washington DC, you have full practice privileges and can evaluate, diagnose, order tests, interpret tests, and manage treatment plans. You can even prescribe medication.
These privileges are not set in stone. Changes on a state-by-state basis can change your opinion on where you live and where you want to work drastically.
Keep an Ear Out for Nursing Roles
New nursing roles and opportunities are emerging every year. New roles, new opportunities, and even changing legislation can make a huge difference in where you want to take your career. While there will be extra steps to changing roles, if something new comes along or if something changes and you now have a new dream job, you owe it to yourself to work towards it.
Be Prepared to Further Your Training
If you can get into the habit of learning and furthering your training, you will go so far with your career, and not just when you need to earn a degree to earn a new license. There are many ways you can continue your training with workshops and short courses that will keep your skills sharp and yourself in high demand.
Networking for Nurses
Some of the best roles are rare. To work in a rare role that doesn’t exist in every hospital or clinic, you will need to network. Networking may seem daunting for those who haven’t actively tried to improve their connections before, but the good news is that every day you work, you are networking.
The best way to network for specific roles is to simply reach out and ask for advice from someone who is already in the role or industry that you want. In some cases, this is how you can transfer into the unit you need before the MSN program you want to take will accept you. In other cases knowing someone is essential to getting an in at all. Either way, aim to be slow about your connections so that you can foster them, nurture them, and most of all, remember who is who and what they do.
Important Information about Becoming a Certified Scrum Master and the Training Required for That
In recent years, project management professionals have taken over the market because of the rise in their demands in all kinds of industries from health to finance. The work of a Certified Scrum Master is to professionally lead a team through the entire process of project creation and management using Agile project management techniques. A Certified Scrum Master ® facilitates communication and collaboration between leaders and members of the team to ensure that the outcome, i.e., the project is successful. If you wish to become an in-demand Certified Scrum Master then you should take the CSM Training.
The Certified Scrum Master® Course has plenty of activities and real-world simulations for a hands-on learning experience. The course is conducted by worldwide renowned Certified Scrum Trainers who have years of experience in the field of teaching Scrum. Many live interactive training sessions would be provided as well that would be led by industrial instructors. In just a two-day course, you’ll be able to earn 16 PDUs and 16 SEUs after the course is completed. To follow an experiential learning approach, case studies, role plays, activities, real-world simulations, and much more are provided in the course as well. Hands-on learning is required to achieve an advanced level of Scrum Master Training by providing a basis for building high-performance teams.
There are no strict or specific prerequisites for attending this course but some prior knowledge about Scrum in a real-world context would prove very profitable in understanding the core concepts concentrated in this short two-day course. Taking the Agile and Scrum Foundation Course is recommended before taking the Certified Scrum Master® Training. Furthermore, professionals in various fields such as project managers, testers, managers-software development, product managers, developers, product owners, architects-software development, team leaders or members, and anyone who is planning to start their career in the Scrum Master Profession.
Topics that would be Taught in the Certified Scrum Master® Training
- Fundamentals of Scrum
The basic understanding of Scrum is very essential so that the core concepts are clear later on. Therefore, topics such as Scrum framework, roles, activities, and artifacts to kick start a Scrum project.
- Being a Servant Leader
The main aim of a Scrum Master is to successfully lead a team towards the most beneficial outcome. Therefore leadership skills in the context of serving the Scrum team are taught by the latest principles and practices of Scrum.
- The Scope of Scrum
It is important to understand the scope of Scrum if one wants to have in-depth knowledge about its applications, implementations, and techniques. It is important to understand the best implementation of Scrum based on the type of real-world Scrum project assigned to you.
- Acting as a Facilitator
You’ll be taught how to facilitate cross functional Scrum teams so that you can deliver high-value releases in a very short amount of time to market.
- Enabling Transparency
To improve the transparency and visibility of the work of your Scrum team at every level of the project it is essential to not only effectively inspect and make the required changes but also to efficiently adapt to such changes.
- Removing Various Kinds of Obstacles
There are plenty of obstacles that the Scrum leaders and teams face during the project at different levels. The work of a Scrum Master is to identify such obstacles and eliminate them to provide a continuous workflow for the project. For on-time project delivery, the key challenges must be removed through the creation of self-organizing teams.
Why Should You Become a Certified Scrum Master®?
The work of a Scrum Master is a very crucial and integral part of a team that is handling an Agile or Scrum project. However, a Scrum Master can also work for a team that wishes to embrace Scrum and reap profit from the vast amount of benefits provided by Scrum. A Scrum Master alone can guide and lead a team through a project in the right direction. On the last State of Scrum report provided by the Scrum Alliance, it was written that about 85% of the survey respondents were Certified Scrum Masters. Furthermore, as a profession, Scrum Master has been listed among the top ten most promising jobs by LinkedIn because it is a very highly demanding job.
There are plenty of individual and organizational benefits if one plans on taking the Certified Scrum Master Course. Almost every industry in the world is presently using Scrum or adapting to its techniques and principles. The present rate of adoption is very high and is about 58%. Many big companies of the world such as Google, Ernst and Young, Dell, IBM, and industries from healthcare to finance use Scrum. If you adopt the principles of Scrum and become a top-rated Certified Scrum Master through the training course then you can gain advanced level Scrum Master skills and increase the range of the career opportunities available to you.
According to a survey provided by the State of Scrum Report, about 85% of all Scrum users benefit from Scrum as it increases the quality of their work life. Thus, Scrum is not only beneficial for the organization because it provides an easy workflow and efficient project management but also for an individual. The Certified Scrum Master Course would prove to be very beneficial to you in the long run. The certification is very formal and is accepted globally by a wide range of industries. It provides all the skills that are needed to become a successful Scrum Master.
Becoming a Certified Scrum Master® is not difficult if one has the willingness to do so. To take the Scrum Master Course one doesn’t need to qualify for any strict prerequisites, however, basic Scrum knowledge would only prove advantageous to an individual. Furthermore, the two-day comprehensive certification course provides in-depth learning and hands-on experience. There are plenty of case studies, assignments, and activities in the course. The topics would be taught from the fundamentals of Scrum so even if you don’t have any knowledge about Scrum you can still take the course and gain from its benefits.
Tow Truck Training: 5 Tips to Select the Right Course and What Can You Expect
If you are looking for a career in the tow truck industry, selecting the right training course is crucial. Many different schools and programs are available, so it can be challenging to decide which one is right for you.
This blog post will get five tips for selecting the right tow truck training course. Read ahead to know what you can expect from these courses and how they can help you start your career in this field.
What Does It Entail?
If you’re interested in becoming a tow truck driver, you’ll need to complete a training program. The programs are typically offered at community colleges or technical schools. During the training, you’ll learn how to operate a tow truck safely and secure and transport vehicles properly.
You’ll learn about State and Federal Regulations governing the industry. Upon completing the training program, you’ll be prepared to take the state-licensed exam and begin your career immediately.
Types of Training Programs Available
There are many different types of tow trucking training programs available. Some are designed for those who already have experience in the industry, while others are meant for those new to the field.
The programs may cater to specific vehicles, such as those used in heavy-duty construction or logging. No matter your experience level or desired type of truck, there is a course that helps you get the skills you need to succeed.
Similarly, some programs may last only a few days, while others may span several weeks or months. The length of the program will often depend on the type of truck you wish to operate and the level of experience you already have. Many programs will include classroom and hands-on instruction to give you the complete education possible.
Benefits of Joining Training Programs
Tow trucking training programs offer many benefits for those seeking a career in the industry. Perhaps the most apparent benefit is learning from experienced drivers.
These programs provide an opportunity to learn the ins and outs of the job, from the proper way to hook up a vehicle to the safest way to transport it. In addition, the programs often offer their students access to a fleet of trucks to get real-world experience before they even start looking for a job.
And finally, they can help students network with other people in the industry, leading to better job opportunities.
Selecting the Right Training Program
With so many different tow truck training programs available, it can be challenging to decide which one is right for you. Here are a few tips to help you select the right program:
- Accredited by a Reputable Organization: Make sure the program you select is accredited by a reputable organization, such as the National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA).
- Offers Classroom and Hands-On Instruction: Look for a program that offers classroom and hands-on instruction. It will ensure that you get a complete education.
- Fits Your Schedule: Choose a program that fits your schedule. If you’re working full-time, you’ll need to find a program that offers evening or weekend classes.
- Affordable: Make sure the program you select is affordable. There are many programs available, so be sure to shop around for the best price.
- Length of the Program: Consider the length of the program. Some programs may last only a few days, while others may span several weeks or months. Choose a program that fits your needs and schedule.
What to Expect from Training Programs?
Tow truck training programs are designed to give you the skills and knowledge you need to succeed in the tow truck industry. During the program, you’ll learn about truck safety, vehicle loading and unloading, proper use of winches and straps, and defensive driving techniques.
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