The world events in the better part of the last two years have significantly affected all of us. A common impact on many has been changes to the way they work. Working remotely has become a long-term solution for keeping everyone safe as we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. That has been the case for some employees at FasTrak. A core group of employees continue to work in the office while others have switched to remote work.

When you’re unable to see all of your coworkers in person for an extended period of time, it’s easy to begin to feel disconnected from your peers. FasTrak felt that it was time to reconnect and gather as a company, so we recently hosted an outdoor company luncheon. While enjoying delicious Mexican food from a local taco truck, employees were able to safely reunite after months of meeting only through conference calls and video meetings. As they arrived, returning employees were greeted with signs that included “Thank you for making a difference!”, “There is no challenge we cannot get through together.”, and “We are thankful to have you on our team.”

Here are a few photos from the event.

Two FasTrak employees greet each other with a hug.

Two FasTrak employees greet each other with a hug

Employees get some tacos and begin to chat as they begin to chat.

Employees get some tacos and begin to chat as they enjoy their lunch.

FasTrak employees catching up after lunch as the sun finally came out.

FasTrak employees catching up after lunch as the sun finally came out.

Whether working remotely or in the office, COVID-19 changed work for all FasTrak employees. Ethan, our Senior Communications Specialist, shares his experience working in the office throughout this pandemic:

“Our office has certainly had a different feel to it since employees began working remotely. There was definitely some shock at the beginning of the pandemic as the once-bustling office now felt empty. It was a bit unnerving to not know when you might see your coworkers again.

While my personal routine didn’t change much (other than less traffic on the highway, which has since returned), office employees had to adjust how we communicated with remote members of our team. Our office environment is fairly casual and we are a collaborative group, so in-person meetings or impromptu conversations at one’s desk were common pre-pandemic. However, email, instant message, phone, and video conference communication has since replaced face-to-face interaction, which required some getting used to. Still, I’d rather see my coworkers in person, if even just to say a quick hello. I look forward to the day when our remote employees come back.”

Like many FasTrak employees, Sarah, FasTrak’s Marketing Communications Specialist, has been working remotely. Here’s what her experience away from the office has been like:

“Working from home definitely has its pros and cons. At first, I was nervous about a sudden change in routine, but I quickly adapted. I do enjoy being able to see my two dogs and cat during the day and allowing them to be my ‘assistants’. I also like saving gas and time because I don’t have to commute to work, and being able to cook a quick lunch on my own stove once in a while is a nice perk. In the summer, being able to sit outside for short breaks was relaxing. I do miss talking to my coworkers in person, seeing their faces, and feeling in the loop about what’s happening with the team.”

While we cannot be completely certain of when, we do know things will become more “normal” again eventually. For now, the FasTrak team is grateful for the opportunity we had to meet together and catch up. We look forward to similar events in the future. Even when we are all working under one roof again, parking lot gatherings are sure to continue.

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