Among various new research trends, debates and therefore also HR practices there are those that revolve around the logic of the “smart working” , also called mobile or distance working.Briefly , it is absolutely undeniable that companies are experimenting new ways of working that mainly aim to increase flexibility. In the past focus was often on helping families that reflected idea of “welfare centered organization”, mainly with respect to mums’ commitments (myopic view because several times man support was not considered and no complementary strategies were implemented); nowadays focus is on technology that could allow a universal improvement of working.
Often there is a partial view that see technology as only key for successful strategies; then, huge investments in development are done on this area by organization. However, “smart working” it is not only a technology matter; but why? There are cognitive biases. The first aspect that still does not convince organizations is giving full trust to mobile workers. Often it is easy to see managers who have doubts about what a person can do when works outside the office; there is a need of close monitoring. But it is not only a question related to managers’ control but there is also need on employees side; many times people think that they have to be close to direct manager that will imply being more visible, recognized and appreciated. Those two psychological elements show how organizations are not ready.
So what is the real key ? it is commitment: commitment in terms of trust toward organization policies and decisions by all stakeholders and by organizations toward all population. Drive, will, confidence emotional engagement and attachment to company. Only after commitment’s action on getting organization more mature, technology can support in assuring speed up, fleibility and a synchronous working and information sharing. Then, before huge investments in technology, companies have to invest in organizational culture change.