Michael Germershausen, Managing Partner Russia and CIS

Dear All,

Somebody recently asked me – who should be responsible for Digitalisation in your company – the CEO, the CTO or the Covid?

Well, in our business two years ago, we were losing business because we didn’t have offices in Novoi Urengoi or Novosibirsk. To interview a candidate remotely was something that hardly anyone would accept. This year many of our clients havn’t even seen the candidates we placed in person yet, because they have moved from home to office to home office. They won’t even see them at the Xmas party, because only 5% of our clients are planning to have a “physical” event.

Fee seem to care now that we didn’t operate an office in Siberia or not. Maybe one day you don’t have to even operate out of Moscow anymore. During lock down, we had various people working from quite exotic locations and it was not easy to keep track and deliver “sick leave” documents for example to the Phuket.  

Alternatively, companies have started to hire staff that used to be based at the Moscow office, remotely in the regions. Krasnodar salaries for example are about 50% less of what you will pay in Moscow. Considering the ever improving quality of internet and the trend of Moscow based companies reducing their office space, we predict that we will see many more projects in that area.

Based on our own experience where we moved to hot desking and hybrid office format, it cannot be repeated enough times to correctly predict the amount of meeting space you need in the new reality. While you will have less people working in the office every day, it will become much more important that people will have space to get together.

While we have not seen the predicted increase in the number of request for Divorce lawyers yet, the number of divorces has increased in many countries. What is called divorce in personal life means redundancy in professional life. Even during the pandemic people are moving from one job to another. So it becomes even more important to regularly communicate with your colleagues, clients and other stake holders.

2021 will see not only an increase in the income tax rate and further move to electronic work books, but many of us will come back to a new reality.

I don’t know if you already got used to the idea, of not seeing your colleagues regularly anymore, I have not and I am very much looking forward to the day when all the new people we hired during the last 12 months I can see in person and not have a Zoom coffee but a real lunch with.

Stay healthy and have a successful 2021.