KUALA LUMPUR | Work-from-home (WFH) is now a permanent option, not just during the movement control order (MCO) arrangement, said Permodalan Nasional Bhd (PNB) president and group chief executive officer (CEO) Jalil Rasheed.

In his tweets on May 7, 2020, Jalil said as the largest state-owned fund has WFH as a permanent option, most meetings would be a hybrid of virtual and in-person.

“We defied all odds working well past two months virtually. Nothing stopping us from adopting flexibility permanently.

“We have made great strides in using technology, virtual meetings and digital signature, so this momentum must continue even when staff return,” said Jalil, PNB’s youngest president/CEO who was appointed last year at the age of 38.

According to him, this is part of the strategic plan that PNB unveiled last week, one focus area being organisational transformation.

“People and culture is a huge part of it. So this initiative fits right in,” he said.

However, he added that as not every role can be done from home, such as drivers and security, essentially the company is giving employees the option to choose how or where they want to work.

He said the staff would be equipped with the technology hardware, and would be asked to download the MySejahtera application to ensure they are traceable if any unfortunate incident happened.

“We will also issue guidelines or tips to people managers on how to manage remote or split teams, answer all frequently asked questions (FAQs) and have dedicated people assigned to them when they have queries,” he added.

Meanwhile, he said PNB would extend its WFH exercise until the end of May to ensure the employees could do the necessary preparations for Hari Raya Aidilfitri amidst the closure of schools and childcare centres.

Jalil said as the average age of the staff is 39, many have school-going children.

“We’ll be fluid with it to (be in) sync when schools reopen. And being so close to Hari Raya, it’s best everybody stays home and returns after (that),” he said.

Beginning June 2020, Jalil said the return would be deployed over three months to ensure not too many employees are in the building.

“Those who are doing well from home will continue doing so. Of course anybody who wants to return to office, they are welcome to,” he said.

He also said next week, PNB will be introducing flexitime whereby employees would choose the hours they want to work, as long as they deliver their work.

“They can choose to work from home when they want. Key is trust, and keeping your boss and colleagues informed. And being reachable,” he added.