In response to the spread of COVID-19 in Japan, Infostellar encouraged its employees to start working from home in February 2020, and since March 27th 2020, all of our members have been telecommuting. However, in recognition of the pandemic, we decided to continue working from home on a more permanent basis with some new measures and to come into the office only if it is unavoidable. Our top priority is, and always will be, the health and safety of our employees, customers, and partners. We believe that now is the time to restructure the role of the office space and the way we work in the COVID-19 era and beyond.
As a satellite 'Ground Segment as a Service' (GSaaS) provider, we have been expanding our services globally and tackling how to advance our flexible working environment prior to the pandemic. Video conferencing and e-signature systems have always been the norm for us, and, since our inception, we have had flexible working hours, a core working time frame, optional remote work and paid sick leave (in both the UK and Japan). In addition, our employees in the U.K., for whom the situation is more severe, have been working from home since we established our UK entity in 2019.
All of the employees in our Tokyo HQ have been working from home since March and have continued to do so, even after the State of Emergency was lifted in Japan.
We conducted an internal survey in May, 2 months after we started telecommuting, and the results of that revealed that 84% of respondents were “more efficient when working from home” or “as efficient as in the office.” In particular, as a company with global operations, some noted: “working from home is more convenient when collaborating with overseas clients in different time zones.”
At the same time, only 16% of respondents said that working from home had reduced their work efficiency. Specific negatives cited included "Difficulty seeking support from colleagues remotely," "Less exercise due to lack of commute," and "Difficulty working while children are at home.”
In light of the results of this internal survey, we started to completely restructure our remote work environment, conscious not to have our past limitations. which is important as we look to expand our business location to the U.S., in addition to Japan and the U.K.
Our measures to accelerate the ‘new work style’
- Monthly “Work-from-home Allowance” to supplement the increased utility costs, etc.
- Providing equipment required for online meetings
- Discontinue monthly commuting allowance (as members are no longer required to be in the office)
- Monthly Pulse Survey to ensure a better understanding of each team members current condition
- Monthly 1on1 meeting with CEO
- Monthly Town Hall Meeting to stay aligned with executives and employees
- Comprehensive improvement of Communication Guidelines to present best practices of chat tools and email usage, etc.
- Off-site team building event for our worldwide employees (TBD)
This unprecedented experience has made us change in a lot of ways. We want to make use of this opportunity to renew our People Operations strategy and to adapt the way we work in a ‘new normal’ world. The traditional office workspace would be able to scale down and have a more collaborative role than before. We continue to look into what a ‘new work style’ in the COVID-19 and beyond era would be for us, based on the remote work policy.
Infostellar is a satellite 'Ground Segment as a Service' (GSaaS) provider. We provide flexible and scalable ground station services enabled by our cloud platform, 'StellarStation', which virtualizes ground station networks. By lowering the barriers to entry in the ground segment, Infostellar empowers newspace businesses to build better missions and improve the quality of their service. Founded in 2016, Infostellar is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan and has its European office in the UK.
StellarStation is a flexible, scalable, satellite ground station sharing platform. After a one-time setup, satellite operators can access any ground station across our global network. StellarStation also enables ground station owners to monetise their unused capacity by sharing it with satellite operators.https://www.stellarstation.com