Nokia increases choice and flexibility for employees following COVID-19

22. 06. 2021 Tuesday / By: Robert Denes / Generic / Exact time: BST / Print this page

Finnish telecoms giant Pekka Lundmark, director of Nokia, has announced a new, more flexible policy on teleworking and working time. In a press release, Pekka says that as of January 1, 2022 employees will have more options on how and where they will work.

In a post-pandemic survey conducted in 2020, to which 26,000 Nokia employees responded, “91% of respondents felt that they maintained or increased their productivity while working from home. On average, respondents said they would like to work remotely two to three days a week, compared to an average of two days before the epidemic, and 81% still prefer to come into the office for at least part of the work week cooperation and contact with colleagues."

22 June 2021

Espoo, Finland – Nokia has today announced that it is strengthening its flexible working practices following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The updated guidelines, which apply to all Nokia employees and are planned to come into effect 1 January 2022, will provide flexibility for employees to work up to three days a week remotely, as well as increased support for flexible working hours and fully virtual working. Nokia’s existing COVID-19 work from home policy remains in effect globally until the end of 2021.

The guidelines have been created based on learnings from COVID-19 experiences, direct feedback from Nokia employees and to ensure that company ways of working reflect Nokia’s open, fearless and empowered cultural essentials. Workplace flexibility is also recognized as a key enabler of diversity that allows Nokia employees to manage their different work and personal needs in an environment of trust and accountability.

Feedback from employees was captured through a company-wide survey, conducted at the end of 2020, to guide Nokia’s post-pandemic planning. Roughly 26,000 Nokia employees responded to the survey about working preferences post pandemic. 91% of respondents felt that they had retained or increased their productivity during their time working from home. On average, respondents said they want to work two to three days per week remotely, up from an average of two days before the pandemic, with 81% still preferring to come into the office for at least some of the time during their working week to collaborate and connect with colleagues.

In addition to strengthening flexible working practices, Nokia plans to rethink and redesign office spaces to better reflect post-COVID working arrangements and support collaboration. Many sites will see up to 70% of office space allocated to teamwork and meetings, with less space reserved for concentrative workspaces. Some pilot sites, including offices in Dallas, Singapore and Budapest, have already been reconfigured in 2021, with further sites expected to be completed by the end of the year. By the end of 2021, Nokia also plans to launch a smart office solution, allowing employees to book workspaces and office amenities, as well as toolkits and guides aimed at helping people managers and teams to establish better, more flexible and sustainable working models.

The move to a new hybrid model and refurbishments of offices will proceed on a country-by-country basis, taking into consideration local needs, legal requirements and the COVID-19 situation.

Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO of Nokia said: “The pandemic forced organizations to change. Technology gave people the tools to innovate. In many cases, the results have been too good to go back to the old way of doing things,”

“While flexibility and respect have always been at the heart of Nokia, we want to give all our people even greater choice and flexibility over their work, so we are accelerating our transition to become a fully hybrid global workplace. Some people will choose to work more from home, others will choose mainly to work in offices redesigned to offer more collaborative spaces, and in other places we will secure the right facilities as and when required. This will be a country-by-country process and we will learn and refine as we go.”

Facts and figures: Nokia model of working and the COVID-19 pandemic

  • The vast majority of Nokia’s employees have worked remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the company’s existing COVID-19 work from home policy remains in effect globally until the end of 2021.
  • As part of its post-pandemic planning process, Nokia surveyed its global workforce in December 2020 to establish their working preferences and gauge their experiences of working from home during the pandemic. Roughly 26,000 employees responded to the survey.
  • The new guidelines, which are planned to come into effect on 1 January 2022 and apply to all Nokia employees, provide flexibility for employees to work up to three days a week remotely, as well as increased support for flexible working hours and fully virtual working.
  • In 2020, Nokia had approximately 92,000 employees in 130 countries.

In preparation for 1 January 2022, Nokia will continue its collaborative approach, working with employees and their representatives to ensure the new guidelines are implemented appropriately in each country.

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