A new job title for the work-from-home era

Author: 
Paul Nolan

Darren Murph is among the first to have his job title, but he thinks many more companies will adopt it in the post-pandemic world. Murph has been “head of remote” at the open-source software firm GitLab for more than a year. He works and lives near North Carolina’s Outer Banks and serves GitLab’s more than 700-employee all-remote team.

Tech giants such as Facebook, Okta and Quora are following GitLab’s lead, hiring specialists who can help them transition to having a larger percentage of employees work remotely, according to The Washington Post.

Murph says the position is in line with another new job role that many companies are rushing to fill after events from this year — chief diversity officer. The head of remote job entails drafting guidelines for online meetings, planning virtual events, assisting with tax issues resulting from a remote work force, and maintaining corporate culture when employees are spread across the country or even the world.

Prithwiraj Choudhury, a Harvard business professor who has been studying remote work, says to make WFH work, executive leadership must lead the initiative by working remotely themselves. “If the whole company is working remotely but the C-suite is working in an office, then middle managers will just line up to get face time,” he says.