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Advantages and disadvantages of employees working at home

The possibility of working from home can open up a new array of possibilities in the way companies can operate and organize their operations. The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, which began in March 2020, provided employers and employees an perspective on home working when commercial establishments were required to be shut down due to government requirements to safeguard public health.

Before the coronavirus pandemic the practice of working from home was increasing as more employers recognized the advantages it could bring to their business as well as the enhanced work-life balance that it offers their employees. Even if you’re not convinced that it’s beneficial to your business employees who have completed 26 weeks of experience are entitled to ask for flexible working arrangements, such as working from home and employers should seriously consider the possibility of such requests.

The benefits of working from home for employees

With more and more employees who work from home – or using their homes as a base of operations for at least a portion of the time It’s evident that there are numerous advantages for companies including:

Flexibility and agility

Home-based working allows more flexibility and flexibility in work arrangements. When employees aren’t restricted to a desk or a desk, they could be more at ease and more inclined to work at a variety of times such as later or earlier in the daytime or during weekends. This could allow you to meet specific needs of your business, such as in the case of trading with clients in another time zone.

Better retention of employees

The flexibility of home working could help retain employees since the flexibility of working from home allows them to accommodate the needs of their children, cut down on their commutes and allow them to manage their job schedule with their own personal lives. When employees are able to work from home, employees will also have a higher level of trust in their employer which could contribute significantly to the loyalty of staff.

Attract new talent

Home-based work can be provided as a reason to encourage employees to be a part of the team for you, helping you draw new talent into your company. Offering the possibility of work from home jobs can help you stand out in the competitive job market over your competitors who do not offer home working as an option for their employees.

Improved productivity

There are fewer interruptions that are typical in a workplace. However, working at home creates an environment that is quieter and will allow for focussed work. It is also possible that some employees would like to extend their contractual hours to are able to cut down on time spent traveling to and from work.

Staff motivation is increased

When working from home, staff will be more dependable to their employers since the relationship isn’t as tightly controlled and employees can enjoy an amount of freedom to do their tasks. Employees will also feel more comfortable having a routine at home that is more suitable for them and can result in being more motivated to be their top performance.

Better health and well-being of staff

The convenience of working from home removes the necessity for a long commute to work, which can stress your employees. This type of time savings allows employees to receive additional health benefits, such as extra sleep or spending more time with their families, exercising and cooking healthy food choices.

Financial benefits

Save money on the cost of office spaces, office equipment utilities, and other services. Employees might also benefit from the tax relief offered by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to work at home.


There may be employees who frequent visits to locations of customers and thus not always working in the office. Letting them work at home could be more efficient and can lead to additional cost and time savings.

Balance between work and life

The flexibility of working from home helps employees to improve their life balance. For instance, employees who might have been forced to travel are now able to make use of that time creating the foundation for a more balanced work-life. Employees are also able to manage household chores during their work schedules, leaving them with more time at night, for example loading or unloading dishwashers or cooking dinner on their lunch break.
Technology can make life simpler

The internet has enabled employees to stay connected to their office. Tools like Skype allow collaboration between teams and colleagues more efficient and could result in more effective and efficient meetings.

Absences due to lower sickness

The employees are more likely be more energetic and happy when they work from home and have less risk that their immunity system getting negatively affected by burnout. In addition, because employees are in an isolated environment means that there is less risk of spreading infections as would be the case in working in an office.

The disadvantages of employees who work at home

While there are disadvantages when working from home, the majority of them pertain to people who work from home for the entirety instead of a portion of their week:

Home-based work isn’t for all people.

Home-based work may not suit every person’s temperament or abilities. Some workers may prefer the structure and routine that an office setting provides. Certain employees may prefer personal contact with their colleagues and find face-to-face interaction by their bosses extremely helpful in helping them finish their work and reach their goals. It is also important to be aware of employees who have disabilities. The fact that they work from home could have a an adverse impact on the assistance they require to be able to complete their tasks. It is also possible that working from home does not be compatible with all people’s family life, for example, some parents have children that might not know boundaries and create disruptions throughout the working day. Other people might not have the space needed to set up the ideal working environment.

Staff feeling lonely

People who work from home might be unable to connect with their colleagues and their organization overall, something that offices naturally allow. To combat this, employers should ensure that communication is frequent. By scheduling short calls to catch up or regular team gatherings using other technology such as Teams, Skype or Zoom employees are given the chances to feel connected as part of the group. Social gatherings that are more informal and casual can also alleviate any feeling of isolation.

It is difficult to monitor the performance

There may be difficulties managing employees at home and keeping track of their performance. Individuals may react to the monitoring process with different levels of enthusiasm. It is possible to set goals and objectives with employees who are easy to measure to ensure that if the goals aren’t met, you can determine and fix any issues with performance in the early stages.

Home distractions

While home-based work isn’t as distracting, it can still be a distractions that can happen in the office, when a person doesn’t have a quiet, private workspace at home, they can be easily distracted by the sounds of their home or the other household members.

Burnout risk

In offices that provide a distinct physical separation between home and work when you work from home, it could result in employees struggling to distinguish between work-life and the home life. This could result in employees struggling to figure out when to stop work which could lead to longer working hours, more stress and eventually burning out. Employers must encourage their employees to take breaks regularly in addition to reminding them about the need to take a break.

Cost of working at home

The initial costs for training and equipping the training with appropriate equipment like mobile phones, laptops as well as other equipment for IT. It is also necessary to think about adjusting your equipment to ensure that you meet safety and health requirements.

Staff development issues

It is possible that having staff members near to one another causes difficulties in maintaining the development of staff and enhancing their capabilities. You can however encourage staff to use the chance to acquire new skills by attending online classes and events.

Security risks for information

Security issues with information are more likely to happen when staff work at home. There’s a greater risk when laptops that are taken home and the need for employees to be able to access servers remotely. Employers should make sure they put steps in place to secure corporate information through the installation of encryption programs as well as remote wipe apps in the event that mobile devices owned by you disappear. Virtual private networks can also secure your data and offer secure access to computers through the internet. This can help keep your data and files safe but accessible staff members.

Negative effects on mental health

The transition to working from home can affect your employee’s mental wellbeing in the event that they fail to create an ideal routine for them, or are struggling to manage work and family life, or feel isolated. In order to help, you can guide your employees to establish their own routines and establish a designated workspace and establish the boundaries for your household members. Give employees more chances to remain connected regularly through chats and team meeting up. Healthy eating and regular exercise can aid in improving mental health, especially when integrated into a daily routine.

Staff morale has deteriorated

It is often difficult to keep team spirit intact when employees are at home by themselves.

Not all jobs are suitable for those who work from home.

Home-based work is suited to certain jobs more than other types of work. In the same way working from home can suit certain personality types, however not all. Some individuals may prefer to have contact via face-to face communication.

Slow broadband

Be aware that, based on the location where your employees live, they may not able to connect to broadband speeds that will allow them to complete their work efficiently, for example rural broadband can be extremely slow.

The coronavirus outbreak has given certain employers, who might not have thought of the possibility of working from home for their employees, a real knowledge of the effects it has on their employees and business. Employers are now able to get first-hand insight into the benefits and drawbacks of working from home. This information can be useful in helping employers decide the direction for their working methods that improve their company.

Hybrid working method

A shift to home-based work does not mean that employees must work from home. It is often the case that splitting their time between home or other locations that are remote and working in the workplace is the most efficient method. Your employees may be asked to provide feedback about their experience working from home to be able to engage them when it comes to establishing the hybrid working policy.