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AIBU?

To feel WFH has had its day a bit?

493 replies

Seaswimminginwinter · 23/09/2022 06:10

Bosses think workers do less from home - bbc article

My job doesn’t lend itself to WFH but I have noticed on nearly every thread on here about WFH, people insist that they are more productive. However, I have to admit that this doesn’t match with my experiences. But I am one person so maybe I’ve been unlucky, except this article is quite interesting about perceptions.

I also think it changes homes and areas. My own DH is WFH today and it is my day off, meaning I will spend it feeling as f I am I the way in my own home. Homes aren’t meant to be offices.

I get there are advantages but overall I don’t think it works well at all.

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

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DragonflyNights · 23/09/2022 08:08

We hybrid work and frankly whenever i’m in the office I get less done, and i’ve also noticed so do quite a few of my colleagues. We are a chatty real and a couple of people take the piss with endless cigarette breaks and going to other rooms to have ‘catch ups’ with colleagues about x or y and they are gone for an hour!

i’ve also noticed since returning to in person meetings that meetings take longer and people are out of the office travelling more too. In my view it’s less productive overall being in the office on my team.

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hattie43 · 23/09/2022 08:09

I do hybrid working , it's brilliant and I honestly am more productive just because we do an awful lot of ' chat' in the office and are always being called to pointless meetings for the sake of meetings . If I zoom meeting now it's so focussed and speedy .
I absolutely would not go back to an office 5 days a week and that is irrespective of the better quality of life issues .

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Whammyyammy · 23/09/2022 08:10

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Yup, the old I can't WFH, so why should anyone else....

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Arbesque · 23/09/2022 08:12

I grt through work much more quickly at home. No commute or time spent getting ready for work, no distractions and no long coffee breaks.
I suppose it depends on your job really. Mine is totally deadline driven and involves working mainly on my own.

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Pyewhacket · 23/09/2022 08:13

Why would anybody want to go back to all the shit and hassle , not to mention the cost, of a daily commute, if they didn’t have to.

WFH or flexible working patterns are here to stay, you’re not gonna get that gene back in the bottle.

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Hearthnhome · 23/09/2022 08:13

AhaLynn · 23/09/2022 08:07

Gotta love the ‘la la la’ I love it and if you hate it then you’re workplace is just rubbish. Yeah, I’m kind of glad I don’t work in your team! 🤣

Who actually said that? I don’t think anyone did.

They said if your employer can’t provide a training programme while wfh and doesn’t have a process in place to ensure new employees are felt supported and part of a team? They are a shit employer. Which they are. They probably were before wfh. They don’t care about new starters or people feeling equipped to do the job.

Or if productivity has fallen and it’s not been addressed, it’s a shit employer. Which it is. Their managers are shit or they don’t support managers trying to address issues.

Not one person said if you don’t like wfh it’s because you have a bad employer. No one has said wfh works for everyone. People have talked about how it doesn’t work for everyone.

Really odd that you had to twist it to make your point.

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TwinGirlsOnTheWay · 23/09/2022 08:16

I'm fed up of it. People working from home has put huge backlogs in so many government systems that other jobs are being impacted. Time for everyone to get back in the office

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Redlocks28 · 23/09/2022 08:16

My job doesn’t lend itself to working from home. I am self aware enough to appreciate that other peoples jobs are different though and it works well for them! DH has worked from home since well before covid-it’s great for him.

It sounds like it pisses you off that your DH is working in your house when you’re off and it interferes with your plans?! Poor bloke.

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Zippy1510 · 23/09/2022 08:17

Works great for us too. Although I can understand why those who don’t have the option are resentful.

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Naimee87 · 23/09/2022 08:17

@BiologicalKitty fully agree with this! In the office 5days a week prior to COVID and seriously trying to juggle home/mental&workload/DS&school/dog alone. WFH was a godsend. More time all round for everything. And aside from the social aspect of catching up with colleagues in the office (which i didn’t miss one bit, superficial small-talk rubbish) All the work i need to do can be done from home! I absolutely cannot think of anything worse than having to go back to the office again. But different households require different setups, i think those whose houses are crowded appreciate the office and also if you live alone i think the office can sometimes be appealing.

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PerfectlyPreservedQuagaarWarrior · 23/09/2022 08:18

Whammyyammy · 23/09/2022 08:10

Yup, the old I can't WFH, so why should anyone else....

Always a favourite!

I do think it's interesting as well that in a period where so many other things have been happening aside from a big shift towards wfh from March 2020, the tendency since then has been to assume any negatives are specifically because of that.

After all, we're talking about a time period that included millions of employees having to do their jobs whilst caring for children for several months, most of the population getting covid at some point and a good chunk needing time due to their own sickness/that of the people they care for, an increase in long term sick and the biggest labour squeeze in decades. Any one of those things alone would have a seismic impact. But so often people are like yeah, it's definitely the work from home, it couldn't possibly be that the service was awful because the company doesn't have enough people to fill the roles and can't recruit them.

Similarly, there were always people who were unproductive and unpleasant before March 2020, but I don't remember many claims that it was the type of workplace that was causing it and the solution was to get rid of the model entirely.

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Luxurysleuth007 · 23/09/2022 08:20

Definitely does work and I’m jealous of hose that can do it. Damned shame my job can’t be done from home.

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BrightYellowDaffodil · 23/09/2022 08:20

SirCharlesRainier · 23/09/2022 08:03

Bosses who think WFH means lower productivity have massively underestimated just how unproductive I managed to be while in the office.

Hell yes. Some managers seem to think that seeing their employees sitting in front of them and looking at their screens meant they could tick a box to say “Yep, everyone’s working hard. Aren’t I a good manager?”

I wasted so much time in the office, partly because it was hard to take a break. Now I can go and do something else for a bit then come back and get on with more stuff. I get just as much done, if not more, than I used to pre-remote working (it would be painfully obvious if I wasn’t getting through my work) and I get to spend my breaks how I want. As an example, I couldn’t sit in the office playing a game on my iPad for 10 minutes, but I can at home.

What remote working has really taught us is that some managers don’t manage, they just control. I trust my staff to get their work done and, as long as work is being done and they're in the office for the minimum required/available during core hours, I don’t really care when or where they do it as long as it’s not impacting on their welfare.

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CentrifugalBumblePuppy · 23/09/2022 08:21

I’ve worked from home for 20+ years, as has my husband! We were IT contractors until 2021, we’re well set up to deliver projects (I’ve even done e electronic prototyping from
home, board etching, oven & iron soldering, pretty much every thing! We have a small bedroom free after son went to Uni & of into the world, plus an old coal/garden hallway we could use for messy work (I’ve made & sold puppets, a long worktop for gluing & sewing).

The flexibility is great, and enabled me to go wherever in the world my then child son was working (he was an actor) & my husband could do pick ups/drop offs for our daughter when she was at primary school. Both of us could catch up with any work or get ahead on projects in the evening when the kids were in bed too.

DH still working from home now he’s in a permanent role, their clients are around the world so there’s flexibility to be in contact to your team in, say Canada (which has its own departments across all territories/ time zones out there). They were doing once a fortnight meetings in the London office, but as the team had grown over the pandemic with developers 200 miles away, working from home & daily team meets were more convenient anyway.

I’ve shifted taking one hobby into a day job, so I’m using resin printers & washers for resin prototyping, all from our office.

It’s easier if you can dedicate space as a work space (for 15 years we were both in our alcove on our bedroom, not the best idea). Tech comms & good broadband (we have the fastest Virgin offer, it’s not cheap but heck, is cheaper than commuting) make it easy. And DH’s company did a study in productivity - wfh for the win.

With kids, you need to organised, with relatives who think you can drop everything because they can’t leave the office but you’re dossing at home is an issue 🙄, although it made emergent stuff with my Dad & now Mum far easier to deal with.

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FriNightBlues · 23/09/2022 08:22

I live in London, where my company has an office. I go in about 2-3 times per month. But…

I work remotely for clients in the US and the UK. Some are in their offices, some WFH
My team members are in the US, Canada, UK, Middle East and South America and all WFH
My manager is in the US and WFH

Even if I go into the office, I still don’t see anybody I work with directly.
None of my team members or managers have an office to go to, unless they fancy getting on a plane for 8+ hours and coming to London

This is pretty standard in my industry now.

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JustAWeirdoWithNoName · 23/09/2022 08:24

It's certainly not the case in my industry
My team is based all over the world (UK, Europe, US etc.) and so I would be spending my day on Teams calls even if I were in the office

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gogohmm · 23/09/2022 08:25

Very similar thoughts op.

Dp's company worked from home a bit (never fully because they have workers that can't do needed office staff in too) some coped well and were as productive from home, others basically did little at home - and guess who didn't want to return to full time office work

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GoldenOmber · 23/09/2022 08:26

Pyewhacket · 23/09/2022 08:13

Why would anybody want to go back to all the shit and hassle , not to mention the cost, of a daily commute, if they didn’t have to.

WFH or flexible working patterns are here to stay, you’re not gonna get that gene back in the bottle.

Some people like having a bit of physical work-life separation. I use my commute to destress between mayhem of work and mayhem of kids.

As with WFH, there is no one-size-fits-all set of preferences.

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DashboardConfessional · 23/09/2022 08:28

I did 3 months WFH as a financial services admin when I had just started and it was an actual nightmare. Trying to find out which broker the caller had had a missed call from, getting questions I couldn't answer with nobody to ask, and having to post documents back and forth instead of passing them desk to desk. DH however loves WFH and has been doing it since 2018.

I'm all for it in general - we benefit massively. But I'm not so sure certain jobs have to offer hybrid. In my quasi-reception role you don't necessarily (I stress necessarily) want someone who wants WFH because they hate noise and people (as opposed to someone who wants WFH for caring/commute reasons).

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KathyWilliams · 23/09/2022 08:29

ErrolTheDragon · 23/09/2022 08:02

I personally think that WFH is the spawn of Satan. I am sick of not being able to ring up any organisation and have a sensible conversation with someone which isn't interrupted by children/dogs/postmen. Either that, or whoever I'm ringing up wants to tell me their life story, presumably because they are missing the social side of being at work. It's a bloody nightmare, and one of the very worst things about Covid.

Really? We've done quite a lot of phoning banks and service providers over the last couple of years. I've only once heard a kid in the background (during lockdown when the schools were closed) - mostly we've found that the phone is answered faster than it used to be.

My local council are still WFH. I used to be able to walk into the office and speak to someone (usually had to wait 5-10 mins, if at all). Now I have to ring them. The phone is answered, if at all, after about 50 mins. Then there was the man at a call centre who went on and on and on about his family, children, illnesses, etc, etc. When I said (very politely) that I really just needed the answer to my question because I had a lot to do, he said he was WFH and hated it, and wanted to talk to people.

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Thepeopleversuswork · 23/09/2022 08:30

These attitudes are really damaging for people like me.

WFH has basically enabled me to be able to do my job. I'm a lone parent so working from an office is physically challenging due to school and childcare considerations and prohibitively expensive. I've just about got through my daughter's primary school career because my firm is flexible enough not to mither me about presenteeism.

The pandemic was a nightmare but the post pandemic approach to WFH has been revolutionary for people like me in that its normalised something which should have been normal for decades.

It isn't only a selfish consideration for me. It's also productivity. I am about four times more productive at home than I am in the office because a) I'm not on a train for three hours, b) I'm not dicking around making tea and gossiping. People who struggle to motivate themselves when working alone seem to really struggle with the idea that others are self-driven.

In my office currently there's a real polarisation between the people who realise that remote or hybrid working is now a normal and natural part of life and those who basically want to wind the clock back to 1999 just because they are jealous of other people's inability to self-motivate.

Yes there are some benefits of office working: its better for younger staff learning on the job and mentoring etc. But these advantages are overstated and being used as an excuse for backlash against other people (mainly mothers who have childcare commitments) for doing their jobs efficiently.

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mewkins · 23/09/2022 08:32

@Seaswimminginwinter if your job doesn't lend itself to working from home then you're not really in a position to make that judgement. I was employed in my current job to work from home. It's in my contract and it IS how I work. I started as a home worker and the induction etc has all gone smoothly. As a single parent it works well for me. I get the work done, I work hard (and can work late if needed) and I still get to be around for the kids. It really is a step forward for working parents.

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Fairnair · 23/09/2022 08:33

No, I don’t think WFH has had its day at all. There are jobs which obviously cannot be done from home, or not very easily, but a lot of Administrative, customer service roles etc. can.

My husband is an administrator in a financial type role, and he is now working a hybrid system, usually 3 days at home, and two in the office. There is flexibility, when we both had Covid earlier in the year he did not go into the office for about two weeks (the legal isolation period, free testing etc. had just stopped), worked from home, & similarly when his Mum had an eye op he went to stay with her, but worked from his Mum’s house. My husband has a set number of cases he has to do in a day to meet targets, it is very easy for his boss to see whether he is slacking or not (most days he exceeds his target now). 0n days he has been in the office sometimes he has to log back onto his laptop to finish off a case if there have been too many distractions in the office etc.

Companies are trying to save costs, & some are doing this by either getting rid of their office space all together, or like the Company my husband works for have reduced the amount of space they rent. They use to rent two floors in a city centre location for approx. 100 staff, but have reduced to one floor, & can now only fit approx. 70 people in the office at a time, so the hybrid system works well for them, there is a computer system where the employees book a workstation.

I also think that in the future the Companies which offer more flexible working arrangements, will find it easier to attract staff.

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SpidersAreShitheads · 23/09/2022 08:39

I used to be a manager in a technical role at a finance company and it was an absolute bastard trying to get any work done in the office between 9-5pm. All the managers ended up working really long hours - either coming in at 6am or working til 9pm just to get the actual work done.

I work so much better without people around me.

As it happens, I've been self-employed and WFH for almost 13 years now. It's weird for me hearing everyone talking about WFH and it being so controversial when I've done it for such a long time. I wouldn't ever want to return to an office environment. I love WFH (I'm a copywriter/editor/proofreader).

If it doesn't work for you, then fine. But really, is it such a big deal if a conversation gets interrupted occasionally if it means that society has a much healthier work/life balance?! WFH allows some people to see their children more, spend less time commuting - which is also good for the environment! - spend less money on transport, and be able to manage their commitments with less stress. Other countries have been offering this for years, and are far better than the UK at promoting a balanced lifestyle.

I've just been dealing with a really stressful house move, a mortgage that went tits up, and planning permission which involved about a million different organisations (or at least it bloody felt like it!) - all of which involved multiple phone calls. I didn't have any issues at all speaking to people. No interruptions.

I know iWFH is not for everyone and that's absolutely fair enough. Of course it won't suit everyone. But this snotty attitude that people who WFH aren't pulling their weight really is nasty, and uncalled for. Surely COVID taught us all that life really is too short for this kind of bollocks and petty- mindedness?!

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economicervix · 23/09/2022 08:42

Are you jealous, OP? 😄 The Daily Mail scum rag is fuming about WFH, are you a journo?
Id never work in an office. WfH has zero downsides. If bosses want to be breathing down labourers necks, that’s their problem to cry about, who cares.

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