The managing director of a German software company said customer feedback suggests employees are working from home for half of their time now that the coronavirus pandemic is over.
Speaking to CNBC’s Geoff Cutmore, TeamViewer’s Oliver Steil asked if companies would allow their employees to work from home all the time, saying instead that he believes most companies will take a “hybrid” approach.
Steil’s company develops software that enables companies to remotely manage computers and other devices.
Social media giant Twitter said in May that some of its employees can work from home permanently if they want. Facebook said in August it would allow employees to work remotely until July 2021.
But not every task that companies want or need to do can be done remotely.
“I think a lot of companies need to hire new people, they want to meet customers, they want to have physical meetings and workgroups every now and then,” said Steil, who was interviewed by CNBC at the East Tech West conference. held virtually and on site in Guangzhou, China.
Based on conversations he has had with customers, Steil said companies will switch from a single home office day per week to “a 50-50 percent of working from somewhere and working from the office.”
Employees could work in the office one week and remotely the next, or they could spend two days in the office and work the rest of the way, he said.
According to Steil, not only managers and office workers will work remotely after the pandemic. He believes that people in more “operational” roles can work from home as well.
In the future, technicians like a factory or warehouse can use smart glasses to receive instructions from a remote expert, said Steil, who oversaw the system Acquisition of the augmented reality company Ubimax in July.
“That’s where we want to go,” he said, adding that a remote expert could access and control the machine in front of the warehouse technician. “You work in a three-way interaction and this shortens the travel time, you don’t have to fly an expert around the world, you are faster, more precise, less error-prone and that’s what we try to achieve.”
TeamViewer was listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in September 2019 and today has a market capitalization of 7.62 billion euros (9.03 billion US dollars).
While the company develops its software in Europe, Steil said the Asia-Pacific region has become “the pacemaker for the rest of the world” when it comes to adopting new technologies.