Over the last few months we’ve seen a complete shift in working habits, with most of the UK working from home where possible. Businesses may not have thought much about flexible working before, however some employers have even considered making this the norm going forward. A big question that comes from this is are we more productive working from home or the office?
The office can pose multiple distractions throughout the day, whether it’s meetings, commuting or catching up with colleagues. Of course working from home can have it’s own distractions too, especially if you have friends or family living with you. A recent study showed that 65% of workers said they felt more productive working from home than in the office.
Other aspects of the workday when working from an office include the commute and the amount of money you can end up spending throughout the week. Commuting can add hours onto your work day, with the average commute being around 59 minutes. The cost of travel can also eat into your monthly wage, on top of buying coffee’s or lunch out each day, which can really add up and mean that your budget is squeezed.
But does that mean working from home is better?
If you work from home, you immediately save the commuting time. But you may find you spend more hours working than you would in the office environment which isn’t always healthy. It can be much harder to switch off, when you can’t psychologically differentiate your work place to your home. You could also incur distractions from family members or friends who live with you or in general become distracted with additional jobs around the house – and the fridge...
On a positive, it’s your choice whether you choose to spend extra hours working or just stick to your working hours. If you have personal commitments that require some flexibility with your working hours, it would be a lot easier doing this from home. You’ll also be able to save more money in the long run and probably be a lot more rested.
There’s also pro’s for the employer about working from home, less office space will be required and a decrease in bills. If they can offer their employees a good work life balance, they could also see an increase in productivity too.
In general, it’s all about balance and seeing what works for you. Although there’s uncertainty as to when we get back to ‘normal’, it’s definitely worth working with your employers to come to an agreement about what kind of working style is best for you.