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To think nowadays, working from home should be allowed as much as possible

(127 Posts)
welliesandleaves Mon 02-Nov-15 11:35:04

I do a job that could just as easily be done at home most days as in the office. My senior colleague feels exactly the same as I do. Our job involves working on our own most of the time, has absolute deadlines, has a very definite outcome that can't be fudged in any way, and can be done best in peace and quiet.
Yet our boss, who actually has very little to do with our work but is just someone we officially report to, is very unwilling to allow working from home.
I know other people who are in a similar boat.

Surely, nowadays, with remote access, smartphones, email etc. working from home should be the norm in a lot of jobs, not an exception or a favour. It would cut down on rush hour traffic, allow for a better work/life balance and also bring a bit of life back into a lot of communities which are like ghost towns during the day.

AIBU to feel like this?

Enjolrass Mon 02-Nov-15 11:38:32


I work from home and love it.

However, in my last company they did a work from home trial.

The people working for home were really under performing after 6 months.

So we did another trial where people worked from home some days and not others. Again the days they were at home little was done.

Any problems took ages to sort.

So thy scrapped it. Which is a shame. But maybe that's why some employers are less enthusiastic about it.

Think it will depend on what type of job you have and how self motivated you are.

FaFoutis Mon 02-Nov-15 11:40:18

But I work from home and I am on MN.

AlwaysHope1 Mon 02-Nov-15 11:41:19

and do you really think people will be performing at the same level as in an office? Always contactable? If you are going to commit to x hours at work and the same why not just go to work?

Thurlow Mon 02-Nov-15 11:42:42

No, I agree. But I understand that it's a huge change in mentality for a lot of businesses and I think there's an underlying lack of trust in their employees, and they might think the system is open to abuse (which it is - I've heard stories from people who work in companies with lots of home working where staff have really taken the piss)

My job is the same. We need some people in the office, but we don't need everybody in the office all the time. If we allowed people to home work some of the time, we could actually operate longer hours, which would be of benefit to the firm as a whole. We've actually spoken about it before and while senior management agreed home working and longer hours would be good - but I can't see the change happening quickly. It's doubly frustrating because I work in a sector where half the staff have flexible working (as they are fee-earning) but the other half don't (support staff).

There are some days where it just gets annoying. Like today, I was supposed to just be working the morning but had to take DC to the doctors, so am working a weird middle of the day shift. Turns out another team member is off ill too. I will have to do a 2 hour round trip for my commute. When we're short staffed, if we'd just talked about it I could have worked from home and done more hours and helped out. But no, I have to come in.

I don't know how firms get their head around this though. The culture of presenteeism is very deeply ingrained.

AlwaysHope1 Mon 02-Nov-15 11:42:46

I guess it depends on the industry you work in really.

Alibabsandthe40Musketeers Mon 02-Nov-15 11:43:57

FaFoutis, and if you were in the office you would spend time getting a coffee, chatting with colleagues, someone coming to your desk and pestering you. Time in traffic or on a delayed train.

So many hours in a standard office day are wasted, you can do a lot of MNing before you waste as much.

welliesandleaves Mon 02-Nov-15 11:44:29

Because you cut out the commuting and the various distractions Alwayshope. I get the same amount of work done in little over half the time at home, because I am able to give it my full concentration. In an office people are coming in to chat or to have a moan about something and so on. Also, sitting in traffic for an hour is a total waste of time if you're just going in to sit in an office doing a job that requires no input from anyone else.

WorraLiberty Mon 02-Nov-15 11:44:35

and also bring a bit of life back into a lot of communities which are like ghost towns during the day.

How, if people are supposed to be at home, working? confused

ZoeTurtle Mon 02-Nov-15 11:45:12

YANBU in principle but I'm convinced that being too free with working from home is in a company's best interests. Like at Enjolrass (by the sound of it) working from home is really abused where I work. It doesn't work for all jobs or all people but it's difficult to implement a case-by-case policy because it's so open to discrimination and resentment from people who are refused.

I'm a bit on the fence. Maybe as working from home becomes more popular people will stop seeing it as a slacking-off day (as many here seem to) and it will reap all the benefits it should be able to in theory.

ZoeTurtle Mon 02-Nov-15 11:45:29

D'oh. I'm not convinced that being too free...

GnocchiGnocchiWhosThere Mon 02-Nov-15 11:46:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Alibabsandthe40Musketeers Mon 02-Nov-15 11:46:31

Maybe by people being able to get on with their lives from 5-6pm rather than facing a long commute?

Maybe by having a lunch hour to run errands, go for coffee like you would if you were in the office?

AlwaysHope1 Mon 02-Nov-15 11:46:37

grin worra

Exactly the point maybe employers are not too keen.

megletthesecond Mon 02-Nov-15 11:46:52

Yanbu. It would really help my IBS be in able to stay in the warm too.

Pity that only senior management ever seem to get the working from home perk in our organisation hmm.

Alibabsandthe40Musketeers Mon 02-Nov-15 11:46:55

My post was in reply to Worra

welliesandleaves Mon 02-Nov-15 11:48:07

Worral the days I'm working from home I stroll down to the village at lunchtime, or pop in to see my mum. I can also drop into a neighbour for a coffee during the morning. Sometimes I start working before breakfast, so have a lot done before the time I'd even be sitting down at my desk normally, so have more free time to be out and about a bit locally.

WorraLiberty Mon 02-Nov-15 11:48:45

I don't think I've ever had a whole hour for lunch grin

GnocchiGnocchiWhosThere Mon 02-Nov-15 11:49:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

welliesandleaves Mon 02-Nov-15 11:50:09

No, you probably haven't Worral because so much of the day is wasted commuting and dealing with colleagues.

welliesandleaves Mon 02-Nov-15 11:51:01

Mermaid I agree that it's good to go into the office a couple of days a week to stay in touch and also to have a social dimension to your job. But five days a week just isn't necessary in a lot of jobs.

FaFoutis Mon 02-Nov-15 11:53:29

Thanks Alibabs, that made me feel better.

Lots of people work from home in the town where I live. The cafes are busy all day.

SellFridges Mon 02-Nov-15 11:53:34

I do a couple of days from home, as do most of my colleagues. We've settled into a Rhythm where we all try to go in on the same days so we can have catch ups, meetings, coffee etc.

I'm much more productive at home and it helps my work life balance as I can get on with the washing while on a conference call.

Chocolatecakefan Mon 02-Nov-15 11:55:39

I agree.

I return to work in Jan from mat leave and I already know that my boss doesn't like people working from home. I only use word/excel and email and work independently without anyone else getting involved, therefore nothing that would prevent me from working at home.

Although I'm happy to work in the office I wish they would set me up for remote working for the inevitable days for when the baby is poorly and I have to look after her - unfortunately my type of office deducts pay if you call in sick, therefore it ends up with everyone feeling rubbish all the time because there are so many germs flying around! Remote working would be ideal for days when you feel fine to work, but you know that you are contagious

Thurlow Mon 02-Nov-15 11:58:10

There's a huge amount of goodwill companies could gain by allowing employees to work from home sometimes. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. But keeping an eye on meetings and schedules and need to touch base regularly and all that, there's still room for many employees to do a day a week from home, say.

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