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The Perks and Perils of Working from Home: Is it Really Effective?

July 3, 2017

For the past few years, more companies are allowing their employees to work from home. Be it full or part-time remote worker, it seems that physical attendance is no longer mandatory rule for some organisations. Supported with the advancements in technology that come with more affordable costs, working remotely has never been so easier. Nonetheless, while working out of home might sound like a convenient idea, is it really effective? Can you stay productive with your children playing around your home office?

According to recent poll conducted by Hays, work flexibility remains the most-sought benefit for talents in Singapore. When considering a job offer from potential employer, 81 percent candidates expect to see greater flexibility in an attempt to achieve better work-life balance.

Among other flexibility perks, the option to work from home is probably the most popular benefit offered by employers. One good reason why more employers are promoting remote working is because it can help retain critical skills, while widening talent scope to accommodate candidates who require such flexibility to remain in the workforce.

Whether you work for an organisation or aspire to build your own home-based business, there are several things that you should consider before moving your office to home. Take a look at the following perks and perils to decide if working from home will work for you:

See: Remotely Managing Remote Teams: The Flip Sides

THE PERKS

  1.       Less stressful

Having your office at home means that you can skip hours of long commute and wear anything you find on your wardrobe to work. Not only time-efficient, this will save a great deal of energy and money as well. Additionally, you can arrange your own working hours, such that you can take a break whenever you want and reduce daily stress levels.

  1.       Save up on money

With no commute and no particular dress-code to wear, you can save your money for other things that matter. While you can wear anything casual and comfy, you need to have at least one or two formal wardrobe just in case you need to conduct important meeting with clients. Furthermore, you can save money on office rent and taxes too.

  1.       More time with family

Given that most people are struggling to find the right balance between work and life, working from home will help you find and maintain the balance. More than men, working mothers are probably more benefited with this flexible arrangement since they will get more time to spend with the family and take care of their children.

  1.       Greater productivity

Working from home means greater freedom to decide on your timings and tasks that need to be accomplished. With the privilege of working from the place where you’re most comfortable at, this will enhance creativity and boost productivity.

THE PERILS

  1.       Lack of human interaction

If you belong to extrovert individual types, who love to mingle in the crowd and enjoy social interactions, then probably working from home will make you feel really lonely and isolated.

While you can stay in touch with your co-workers through chats, emails, or video calls, nothing beats the authenticity of a face-to-face connect. Not to mention, without direct connection, it could be difficult to establish trust and chemistry with your peers.

  1.       Slacking off

Working from home requires you to have strong self-discipline and great self-motivation. When your office is at home, you might get carried away with the cosy atmosphere and end up slacking off. When you are unable to manage your own workflow, productivity can be extremely affected which might affect the full-time working employees, and result in delayed execution timelines.

  1.       Blurred lines of work and life

When you choose to move your office to home, it means that you never really leave your work. Owing to which, there could be blurred lines between work and personal life. Since there is no difference between being at work and at home, there are good chances that you might be overwhelmed with client’s emails and calls even during dinner with family.

  1.       No help or assistance

One disadvantage of working from home is that you have to do everything by yourself. There will be none who will come when you need help. When you want to know something, you have to find out and learn by yourself. When something does not go right such as error on laptop or slow internet connection, you have to fix it by yourself.

Read also: How Can HR Managers Help Integrate Remote Employees with Culture?

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