For many people all over the world, working from home is the new normal. With COVID-19 ravaging the planet, millions of employees are switching to remote operation and learning to love it.
Over the past few months, vaccination has been gaining momentum. As many as 40% of employers are thinking about bringing employees back to the office as early as this spring. That leaves many people wondering about how they are going to adapt to office work after a year of working from home.
Some employers are ready to offer their staff an option of choosing between remote operation and the return to the office. If you are one of them, you may be wondering whether going back is a good decision.
Here are a few pros and cons to make your choice easier.
Advantages of Returning To the Office
Let’s start with the benefits.
1. Better Communications
No matter how big of a Skype and Zoom guru you’ve become, communicating with your coworkers is much easier when you are doing it personally. Instead of struggling with a poor internet connection, malfunctioning headphones, and distracting noises, you can simply walk over to a co-worker and solve a problem within minutes.
The same works for in-person meetings. They are often more productive than their remote counterparts are.
2. Fewer Distractions
When you are working from home, you face a variety of distractions. If other people live with you, it’s impossible to avoid numerous noises that interfere with your work.
Besides small children, family members, or roommates who may need your attention, you could be distracted by other factors like the close proximity of the fridge and the couch.
It can be hard for many people to organize work from home. Some companies even had to arrange courses for their employees to simplify the transition to remote work.
Other companies had to hire dedicated .NET developers and other professionals who already have experience working remotely.
When you come back to the office, all distractions will be gone, allowing you to work at the necessary pace.
One of the major factors many people miss while working from home is the lack of socialization. From watercooler talks to birthday parties, being away from your co-workers has a negative effect on the overall company environment.
By returning to the office, you can start socializing and participating in team-building activities, thus making your time at work more diverse and enjoyable.
Disadvantages of Returning To the Office
While office work has many benefits, the return comes with a few disadvantages as well.
People who work from home save an average of 49.6 minutes a day on commute. Besides saving time, eliminating the commute from your daily activities removes all the stress associated with standing in traffic or being late to work.
When you return to work, you have to factor the commute back in and once again learn how to ensure timely arrival to the office.
2. Time Optimization
You’ve spent the entire year or even more working from home. You’ve learned how to manage your time to fit work into your life at home. While some people had to take courses, others spend a lot of time figuring out how to make the new normal work for them.
If you decide to return to work, you need to change your habits all over again, tweaking your time management in the process.
3. COVID-19 and Other Diseases
Even though vaccination is in full swing, some people refuse to vaccinate or don’t do it for health reasons. With new variations of the virus appearing in different countries, it may not be entirely safe to resume a “normal” life just yet.
During the pandemic while people were working from home, the number of contagious disease cases like the flu went down dramatically. Many people felt healthier than they have in years simply because they avoided person-to-person contacts.
By coming back to the office, you could be making yourself vulnerable once again.
Should you return to the office? There is no simple answer. If you feel as if you’ll be more productive behind an office desk, you may want to consider returning. However, if you are doing perfectly fine at home, consider staying back for a little while longer.
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