Working life can be hectic and when it comes to working full time while dealing with childcare issues or trying to arrange healthcare appointments; work can be a little inflexible. Many roles in the modern world can be easily done from home and without long commutes to the office; more time can be spent profitably employed in work tasks. So is home working likely to become the norm where possible?
With the flexibility of home working, it means that employees won’t ignore healthcare appointments such as dental care or doctor’s appointments in order to keep them healthy, investigate potential long term health issues or to treat problems quickly preventing them from getting worse. Many employees worry that they will be dismissed if they attend essential appointments regularly and they may choose to ignore health complaints that could lead to bigger problems. Health is vitally important and without robust health, it can be difficult to carry out duties so allowing employees flexible working from home can actually help to improve the performance of staff.
On most occasions, the only tools needed for home working are a laptop or tablet PC and an internet connection. Many companies employ a system of hotdesking to allow several staff to use in office desks at varying times in the week so less office space is needed if staff members have a schedule of working from home and attending the office only on certain days. Therefore working from home can be beneficial for both employees and their employers.
Not only do companies save money having their staff working from home but employees will also save a great deal of money in the cost of travel. Working from home can save significantly on the cost of commuting but the cost of power working from home could eat into these savings.
There are some issues with working from home. Staff can feel isolated if working from home for long periods of time and they may also feel they have a lack of support without regular interaction with colleagues and managers. Home working also requires a great deal of discipline and trust as it can be easy to get distracted by television, friends or social networking sites.
Many employers worry that their staff will be less productive when working from home but studies have shown that a large percentage of employees are happier and more productive when given the opportunity to work from home. Conversely, home working can actually cause employees to work longer hours and find it difficult to shutdown at the end of the day. It is a good idea to monitor the activity and productivity of staff working from home as well as those in the office to get a good picture of what is achieved.
While working from home has many benefits, it s unlikely that companies will offer it to every employee and some people actually prefer coming into the office so it is unlikely that working from home will become the norm but for some roles it will definitely be the future.