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February 10, 2020

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Working from home becomes a new trend

CONDUCTING data analysis, content review and document editing, Liu Hai’s first day back to work today after this year’s Spring Festival holiday will be almost business as usual, except that he will work from home.

The 29-year-old works for an Internet company in Beijing. Due to efforts to curb the novel coronavirus outbreak, the capital issued a notice on January 31 asking enterprises, except for those involved in key sectors, not to resume their work earlier than midnight on February 9, and employees were encouraged to work from home.

“Although we can only communicate with each other online, the home office has little impact on us, as most of our work can be done through the Internet.”

As more Chinese provinces and cities have postponed the resumption of business to curb the spread of the epidemic, working from home has become a new trend for firms to stay operational.

Productivity software

“So far, this is the best way to prevent employees from being infected,” Liu said.

Thanks to the rapid development of China’s Internet industry, a series of productivity software has been developed in recent years, making it possible for enterprises to adopt online offices in this special period.

Internet giant Alibaba announced on January 30 that the full set of a home office system, developed by its mobile office tool DingTalk, will be offered free to 10 million firms. So far, over 6 million companies and organizations have used DingTalk’s online office products.

“A home office is not as smooth as face-to-face communication, but it is a special measure in this special period. Through DingTalk, we can work anytime and anywhere,” said Lu Ning, operations manager of an Internet education firm.

Besides enterprises, China’s financial, educational and even judicial sectors have joined the trend of working from home offices to reduce crowds and prevent the spread of the outbreak.

In the eastern Shandong Province, a court trial took place online with no plaintiff, defendant or agent showing up at the intermediate people’s court of Binzhou City. Instead, it heard the case via a group video call to prevent the gathering of people.


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