In 2015 when we started to make the move towards becoming a fully remote working organisation, and closed our city centre offices. We were definitely in the minority. All our major competitors had offices and lots of them. They had nice, plush meeting rooms in locations across the UK where their delegates could meet coaches.
So why did we decide to close ours? Because we thought there was a better way, a more convenient way to deliver outplacement to our delegates. Just like we did with our internal staff, we went remote. We gave all our delegates, and coaches, the option to meet up remotely. We saw clear benefits to remote coaching, not just for us, but for our coaches and delegates too.
- Less cost to the delegate – we have written various articles about this over the past 6+ years. Traditional outplacement isn’t free to the delegate. While they may not be paying for the coaching, if there is the need to travel to a central location for the meeting with their coach, there is a cost involved. Costs that can quickly add up and eat into any redundancy pay. By removing the need to travel, we’ve moved that cost and the barrier that stops some from taking up the offer of outplacement.
- More convenient – travel as well as costing money, cost time. Unless delegates live in or very close to a city the likelihood was they’d have to travel some distance to meet their coach. Remote coaching means that not only are they saving money, but saving time. An important commodity when looking for a new job.
- Immediate – got a job interview tomorrow and need some urgent help ASAP. If you had to schedule a meeting and travel to a central location the chances are you wouldn’t be getting that vital help. With our remote career concierges at the end of the phone and coaches (diary commitments withstanding) available and able to video call, you could receive that all-important advice before the big interview.
- More choice – we have coaches all over the country and while we’re strong advocates of remote working. We normally pair delegates to a coach near them, so that should they wish to meet in person, (isn’t it great that we now can once again), it is convenient for all involved. However, while all our coaches are career experts, we have some that have more expertise in niche areas such as retirement, self-employment, and freelancing. If you’re looking to retire and live in Edinburgh, the closest retirement expert might be in Manchester. That’s a long commute, but with our remote model you can meet our retirement expert whether they live 10 miles or 10 hours away from you. This flexibility allows us to pick the coach, or coaches that aren’t just the closest to each delegate, but the one whose skills and experience best match the career aspirations of the delegate.
Pre-covid we often felt there was a sense of reluctance about remote coaching, that it was impersonal and didn’t have that human touch. However, the past 2 years have seen a massive shift in the perception and acceptance of video-based meetings. They have become, not just more common, but the norm. The flexibility that remote coaching brings, can make all the difference.