May 13, 2021
With things slowly returning to normal, many of us are wondering whether employers will expect everyone back at the office if remote working is here to stay.
When the first national lockdown took hold, many of us were forced into home working as employers scrambled to find ways to stay in business without breaking guidelines. As a result, people began to realise that work from home jobs allowed a renewed focus on work-life balance and stopped the stressful commute each day. Now things are beginning to open again, we are left wondering if remote working jobs should be the new normal or not.
Jobs You Can Work from Home More Popular Than Ever
Prior to COVID, home working was seen as an option for elite managers, freelancers and self-employed businesses. Today it is seen as a viable solution that supports employee wellbeing and reduces business outgoings on rent and travel expenses.
Employees have realised that they are able to balance work and life better when they work from home as it reduces the time they are in work mode and allows them to work in comfort and in their own surroundings. In fact, many businesses are reporting an increase in the workflow because their employees are happier and more focused.
When Working from Home is Not Suitable
In reality, there is always an exception to the rule, and many people in the UK have found working from home to be difficult and arduous. The reasons include not having access to a space that can be turned into a work area, living in a busy house, having a poor or difficult relationship with someone in their home or mental health difficulties that make being at home for work difficult.
It’s clear that if work from home jobs are to stay in place, then employers will need to consider alternatives for employees that are unable to do this. However, there are local remote working hubs that could be utilised or even a return to the office where it is economically sound to do so. What is obvious is that HR teams will need to take the time to consider all areas of need when correctly supporting teams to achieve business goals.
A Hybrid Future?
When you consider that more people now want work from home jobs in order to achieve their personal and professional goals, then the best answer may be a hybrid option. Many businesses are now looking at hot-desking, smaller premises or flexible working hours as a good way to meet demand, support those who want to travel to work and reduce the costs of office rental.
The good news is that many UK employers are now working on hybrid working plans that provide a work base as well as remote work options and will allow employees to choose wherever feasible. With this new type of working comes new accountability, and the next obvious step will be finding a way to keep productivity high with a disparate workforce.
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