Is this the end of WFH?

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greenone

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During COVID I ended up contracting working from home which was great for me, if I wanted quiet I got it if I wanted music on I can put the music I want to listen to on. I started a new job back end of last year that is office based, god I wish they'd let me work from home ( no reason why I couldn't do the work from home). The verbal diarrhoea in the office drives me up the wall.
 
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Beedee

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The phrase 'team building' always sends a shudder through me. It suggests getting cold and wet somewhere, somehow inspiring people to work better together. No thanks.

Good luck in your quest :D
Reminds me of the first job I had when I worked in London. The team was functional but not always performing at its best. Then a compulsory team building weekend was held to "improve" things. After the weekend all the rosters had to be redrawn as there had been a couple of fights, and a number of other people refused to work together ever again.
 

BiMGuy

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Civil Servants seem to get a bad wrap. No one moaned during the pandemic when they were working at home, not on furlough, keeping the country going. The Department for Education has come under a lot of scrutiny. No one questioned them working from home when they were sorting out free school meals and laptops to keep children learning and fed/watered. The data reported on was taken over the first week of the Easter holidays so is skewed. Schools are off so DfE staff likely take time off too.

Many of these government departments had working from home in place before the pandemic (perhaps 2-3 days per week), where it was possible. In addition, many of the buildings they occupy are probably not set up for 100% of people to attend at any time. Much more likely, there will 6-7 desks per 10 staff to enable meeting rooms, touch down stations and flexible/adaptable space to be included on site.
Why would anyone have moaned that the CS weren’t put on furlough? Except maybe those in the CS that wanted to be. Seems an odd statement to make.
 

Fromtherough

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Why would anyone have moaned that the CS weren’t put on furlough? Except maybe those in the CS that wanted to be. Seems an odd statement to make.
My point was that no one moaned when civil servants were instructed to work from home. Many of those will have been junior staff in customer facing or customer support roles, who in the private sector would likely to have been furloughed. However, technology (and hardware/infrastructure) was invested in to enable them to continue to deliver their roles at home, continuing the service they were offering previously. There may be evidence that suggests this may be a more productive way of working. However, to blindly instruct all to return to the office is archaic and potentially wasteful with the public purse.
 

Banchory Buddha

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My point was that no one moaned when civil servants were instructed to work from home. Many of those will have been junior staff in customer facing or customer support roles, who in the private sector would likely to have been furloughed. However, technology (and hardware/infrastructure) was invested in to enable them to continue to deliver their roles at home, continuing the service they were offering previously. There may be evidence that suggests this may be a more productive way of working. However, to blindly instruct all to return to the office is archaic and potentially wasteful with the public purse.
I think basically everyone in this thread agrees with that.
 

Bunkermagnet

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My wife now works from home permanently 4 days a week, with 1 day in the office. Whilst she doesn’t miss the commute, she does miss the commute that seperates work from home. She’s also finding new and younger staff in her team don’t pick up the experience knowledge older or longer serving members have that makes the job easier and quicker.

From my point of view, being one who works in peoples houses, I am fed up with everyone wanting their appointment between 11 and 12 , because they have a zoom meeting, or not answering the door again because they are on a zoom meeting or the like.
I suppose the overbearing feeling is that their job is more important than mine, but they still want to wash their laundry, or dishes, or cook their food or keep it cold.
I have also found the “rush hour” has mooched into a “parents taking the kids out 3hrs rush”
Theres good and bad for both sides, let’s not forget that.
 
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What I'd do to be able to work from home! Manufacturing is the pits. Although I do believe that a hybrid working situation is probably best. You can't just have people purely working from home, as it almost creates a disjointed team.
 

Wilson

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I read an article yesterday from a Civil Servant, who said their office had been reduced to 3 desks for every 10 heads, so they can’t all go back to the office like JRM wants.
 

IanM

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Some organisations will never go back to pre covid practices.
Some will try.
Others will wobble between the two.

I reckon sufficient organisations will mess it up and it'll mean me coming out of retirement over the winter!:ROFLMAO:
 
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Ultimately some people can’t be trusted to work from home. Gave all of my team the opportunity a good majority were more efficient saving on commute time etc.

Others absolutely taking the mick, productivity down, not responding to Client E-Mails/Calls in an efficient manor and workflow down in a major way with work quality terrible as it being rushed/last minute.

It made it somewhat difficult however now we have a split, those that are trusted to work from home typically work from home 2-3 days a week, others now work from the office 5 days a week. Also have to ensure younger workers are learning from experienced colleagues so co-ordinate their days in the office and they shadow on site. Teams meetings help fill in the gaps.

We are very flexible too which has been very positive. Some guys are early risers like me and depending on meetings etc if you start your day at 4am and your finished for dinner to spend more time with your family that’s fine. Alternatively some of the younger lads prefer to start their day mid-late morning and work a bit later into the evening also fine as long as projects stay on track.

Doesn’t always work depending on meetings, calls E-Mails but we trust those that work from home to manage their day to suit them and their commitments and they do. They are much happier and have a happier work/life balance as a result.

This is under review and changing with more transitioning to work from home. Those who abused the system have been given another chance some now trusted to do so and others have to have their hand held in the office which is a shame.

I deal with a wide range of sectors from different local authorities mainly planning however also Transport, Economy, Bio-Diversity departments and making contact can only be described as frustrating. It’s certainly worse than pre- covid. Fortunately due to our Clients and the financial impact they bring to the local economy we have clout to beat these departments with but it’s still painful and you forever seem to be getting through to voicemail or directed to another contact number which goes unanswered. What I do now which is unfortunate but effective is use the Economic department of the local authority to drive the other departments. Ultimately if applications get significantly delayed the Client may take their shiny new building and employment opportunity elsewhere.

It does feel there is also a lack of resource currently. We are struggling to recruit and I know a lot of others are also. It’s almost like everyone is busier than usual.

Turn arounds on applications have been woeful, including decision dates and communication is next to non existent throughout the process.
 
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IanM

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Yep. Sorting out skivers is easier when they are sat in front of you, but doing it remotely isn't impossible either.

Even before covid, look around the office after 6pm, and the proportion of contractors to permies was significant!:ROFLMAO: Mind you, were they being productive, or just present?;)
 
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Yep. Sorting out skivers is easier when they are sat in front of you, but doing it remotely isn't impossible either.

Even before covid, look around the office after 6pm, and the proportion of contractors to permies was significant!:ROFLMAO: Mind you, were they being productive, or just present?;)
Gave them the chance, still blew it. With skivers we would have morning teams calls to ensure they’re up and working. End the teams call and if you called them via teams within 5-10mins it would go unanswered then some generic excuse. To make them efficient I would become inefficient managing them remotely.

Problem was for me it was almost micro-managing their day, their workload and what they had done. Too much of a time soak, back in the office at least their present rather than in their bed at home. For whatever reason they get stuff done in the office just can’t motivate at home and distracted.

That’s fine they don’t have to work from home and they won’t unless they can work efficiently.
 

IanM

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Spookily just had a call from a recruitment agent. Decent role, but insisting one day a week in London. I may work again in the winter or if I get an offer I can't refuse, but for humour sake, I said that I wouldn't be able to commit to a day in London every week. Apparently several of the folk contacted said the same.
 
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My Mrs has always worked in a team environment in the NHS and joined a charity Help Desk team 2-3 days a week when she retired from the NHS after near 40yts. Started with the charity Nov 2019 and was very happy with the new team and heading up to their office near Tower Bridge.

Then pandemic and after a short transition they got her WFH. She’s now working from our garden studio (which feels as if away from home) and chose the WFH option when offered a few months ago. She misses the close contact with the team but they have a short video muster every morning before the help desk line opens and that has helped her change to her new way of working, going in maybe an occasional day every other month for training or briefings and get-togethers. Her work is very process driven, either taking telephone calls - when her availability or not is visible to all of the team and the manager - or working through responses to on-line queries.

WFH works well for her and the charity and we save £35/day travelling expenses.👍
 
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I read an article yesterday from a Civil Servant, who said their office had been reduced to 3 desks for every 10 heads, so they can’t all go back to the office like JRM wants.
The ALB I work for has reduced capacity in our offices to 40%. We wont be upping that, and have ended a lot of the leases we have. I think JRMs policy is going to be very london-centric and probably more aimed at whitehall types.

We are being strongly encouraged to use it as a recruitment tactic moving forward.
 

Bazzatron

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Yep. Sorting out skivers is easier when they are sat in front of you, but doing it remotely isn't impossible either.

Even before covid, look around the office after 6pm, and the proportion of contractors to permies was significant!:ROFLMAO: Mind you, were they being productive, or just present?;)
Which way around? I'm a Business Analyst and work with a few contract PMs and BAs. Wouldn't know what time they leave...
 
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