Monday, April 22

Liberty Seguros went “full remote” a year ago. Betting everything on teleworking has worked out very well

In March 2021, Liberty Seguros implemented a voluntary ‘full remote’ policy forever among its workers in Western Europe (Spain, Portugal, Ireland and Northern Ireland), to which 99% of the division’s workforce decided to join , composed of about 2,000 people.

A year later, the managers of this company, which had traditionally worked in the office and had barely had the previous experience of the first months of the pandemic, assure that the business continues to function without problems, its workers are happy and in some cases they have even increased productivity. Beatriz Ortega, responsible for Employee Experience of the insurer, explains to Xataka the keys to her model.

listen to employees. One of the fundamental aspects that Beatriz Ortega highlights for the smooth running of the teleworking model at Liberty is the monitoring of what happens within the company. The insurer conducts general surveys of its employees, quarterly meetings with the entire workforce and has a network of representatives, known as ambassadors, who are responsible for communicating the feelings of the different teams to intermediate positions. All of this, she assures the person in charge of Employee Experience, makes them aware of the common concerns and demands of professionals.

From that listening, he points out, the idea arose of offering a completely remote model to the entire workforce, since initially the idea for when the pandemic was over was to establish a hybrid work policy with three office days. “We did a survey in which we asked them what they wanted their work model to be when we returned to the office, and 93% of employees responded that they wanted to telecommute more than two days a week. From there we asked more questions and finally decided to launch the fully remote model a year ago,” he explains.

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And from this monitoring of what workers want, the decision has also emerged to create a bonus of 55 euros per month in 2022 to offset the costs of working remotely. Previously they had already been given two others, for 460 euros and 200 euros, to adapt their workplace at home.

freedom for workers. Another important aspect is that of the freedom that employees have been granted: not only have they been able to choose to work completely remotely, but they can also do it from wherever they want, with the only condition that they must inform the company of the place or places of residence so that you have them located.

In this way, Ortega ensures that around 20% of the workforce has relocated to second homes, cities of origin or move between various destinations throughout the year.

The tools. On the other hand, the insurer has also made an effort to adapt to the new way of working and has invested in remote work software (both self-developed and third-party), various platforms for employees and training for workers to learn to use it all.

Beatrice Liberty

“In some areas we were already working with digital tools that can be used remotely before the pandemic, but in others, such as Operations, 90% of the workforce did not. It has been a marathon, there has been specific training in certain software and some programs that we used in the office for teleworking have been adapted. We have had to make that change, which has meant that we are now a very different company than we were two years ago,” says Liberty’s Employee Experience manager.

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What still doesn’t work. The model, apparently, works, but Ortega acknowledges that there are aspects to polish, such as the digital disconnection.

Despite the fact that they have given informative sessions to the team leaders and have prepared materials for the employees in which they explain, among other things, how to put the mail in absent mode so as not to receive notifications or how to program the sending of emails , have not yet managed to stop their employees from receiving communications after hours.

Productivity and economic results. Thanks to all this, and despite the fact that there are things that still do not work, Beatriz Ortega assures that Liberty Seguros has managed to maintain the productivity and results that they had when they based their work in the office.

“Business data has been very positive this past year. Employees were so interested in telecommuting that they have made an effort to show us that they can perform as much or more than in the office. And in some divisions we have noticed that productivity has increased”, explains the head of Employee Experience at the insurer.

The company has not yet shared its global economic results for 2021, so Xataka has not been able to verify this statement. It has emerged that its car insurance division was the second that grew the most in Spain last year among the ten largest in the industry, with revenues that exceeded 526 million euros, according to the Cooperative Research between Insurance Entities and Pension Funds (ICEA), and that last October it opened a new digital sales channel in Portugal in which it invested 100 million euros, as reported by Liberty itself in a note.

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