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The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

iFacts_Newsletter_SEPT_2015_Working at home

Offices can be very distracting places and hours spent commuting to and from the business means wasted work time. Could allowing employees to work from home be the answer to increased productivity? 


Working from home has been given a bad rap with the perception being that employees don’t work as hard as their peers sitting in cubicles from nine to five. However, evidence is suggesting that those who work from home are just as productive, if not more productive, than those in the office. Consider the following pros and cons of working from home:


Pro #1. You can get more done

Working from home, employees can achieve more in a day for the simple reason that they don’t need to endure traffic jams and a chaotic office environment with multiple interruptions.


Pro #2. Fewer distractions

Passageway conversations and team brainstorming meetings can certainly provide encouragement and inspire innovation but at the same time, offices can be very distracting places. A quieter setting means it’s easier to make calls, concentrate and get the job done. People at home also don’t run the risk of getting called away from their desks for pointless meetings and boardroom gossip.


Pro #3. Fewer sick days

Those who work from home are also found to put in more work hours and take fewer sick days because they don’t need to commute.


Pro #4. Better equipment

Some employees actually have access to better equipment and faster Internet connections in their homes than at their place of work, which allows them to do more in a shorter period of time.


Con #1. There are still distractions

Spouses, children and pets are typical home-working distractions. People working from home are naturally more inclined to get caught up in home-related responsibilities during the time that they should be working.


Con #2. It could be unhealthy

People that work from home may become more inactive and do less exercise than their office-bound colleagues for the simple reason that they don’t need to leave the house. Access to the fridge also increases the temptation for continuous snacking.


Con #3. It could affect career growth

Out of sight can truly be out of mind. According to a study performed by Dell and Intel, 20 percent of remote employees believed that working from home had hindered their career growth, while 23 percent said that there were fewer opportunities for advancement for people who work from home.


Con #4. No Team Spirit

In-person interactions build camaraderie and boost creative output, which can be crucial for certain jobs and positions. The fact is that some people do not thrive while working in isolation. While there is no evidence to support the claim that remote work is better than office work in every instance, it seems that some employees may be far more productive on this model.


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