COVID-19 has been causing socioeconomic and psychological crises across the world. In terms of livelihood, it has a significant impact on the economy, creating economic disruption and threatening not only the lives of people but also their sources of income. Consequently, businesses, no matter their size, have closed down or temporarily halted their operations, leaving employees jobless and struggling to find new sources of income.
To deal with the challenges caused by the pandemic, businesses around the world had to respond quickly to find new ways to deal with the consequences. Most businesses have opted to implement a work-from-home policy in order to remain competitive and generate income despite the pandemic. The digital transformation of businesses has been a significant step in reducing the risks posed by COVID-19 on individuals and the economy.
What is Work From Home?
“Work From Home” or WFH means that instead of going to a real office, an individual does professional work from the comforts of his or her own home.
Working from home isn’t a new trend; it’s been around for a long time. Before COVID-19, working from home is viewed as a benefit rather than a requirement.
Aside from the term “Work From Home,” people also use its synonyms like remote work and telecommuting. Although these terms or phrases may be used interchangeably, they still have notable differences.
Working from home is when someone accomplishes his or her work responsibilities at home rather than at an on-site office,
Remote work is used to reference all flexible, telework, and telecommute arrangements. It indicates that technology aids the completion of work, but there is no specific location to work.
Telecommuting refers to employees who work part-time from a non-traditional work location while maintaining a traditional office as well. It’s a term that’s used to refer to alternate job places in order to cut down on travel time.
Benefits of working from home
Despite the sudden transition from office work to working from home, employees have been managing to see and maximize its advantages. Some benefits of working from home are the following:
The cost of office space, office supplies, utility expenditures, and other amenities may all be reduced, if not eliminated entirely, through work-from-home arrangements.
From an employee’s point of view, the money you previously allocated for transportation, office attire, lunch, and other work-related expenses may now be used for other worthwhile, more important expenses.
Now that employees are no longer tied to an office, they can begin and end their days whenever they want, as long as their tasks are completed and had produced positive results. A flexible work schedule also lets them meet and deal with clients who are in a different time zone.
A work-from-home setup lets people control their own time and have a better work-life balance.
Tired of working in a stressful and loud environment? Working from home allows you to work in peace, and maybe even to work from bed right after waking up.
Working from home means you can wear cozy clothes while working since you no longer have to follow office dress codes.
With the help of technology, you can do almost everything you usually do at the office. You can now stay connected with your colleagues at all times through the internet.
Utilizing technology means accessibility. The secret to a fast and easy process of paperwork is to adopt digital tools that let you manage paperwork online. Document management applications, such as PDFRun, let you manage documents anytime, anywhere. Communicating with coworkers has become simpler, efficient, and productive, thanks to various communication applications.
Downsides of working from home
It’s time to get real. When transitioning to a work process that you are barely prepared for, you will most likely experience its drawbacks.
Working from home is not suited for everyone
People have their own preferences and level of comfortability when choosing their work environment. While some tend to stray from the traditional office setting, others still prefer face-to-face office setup with coworkers and believe that face-to-face coaching from their superiors is highly useful in assisting them to fulfill duties and achieve their objectives.
Let us take into consideration that not everyone has a conducive working environment or enough working space at home. This might become a huge problem for them when dealing with their tasks and responsibilities, thus, their productivity rate will most likely decrease.
Expensive equipment upgrade
Since you will no longer have the luxury to use the equipment and other tools that are available and free at the office, you have no choice but to upgrade your personal equipment to keep up with your work responsibilities.
While some people treat this opportunity to create a home office and buy new computers, computer tables, office chairs, and other equipment that improves the way they work, some don’t have that option.
To complete essential activities and projects, certain remote jobs require particular equipment such as headphones, cameras, or certain software. Even though these things might be considered as an investment, let us not forget that we’re still in the middle of a pandemic. Most individuals would rather spend their money on food and other fundamental necessities than on new devices that they can’t afford.
Less face time, more screen time
While others say that working from home will give you extra time to bond with your loved ones, this might not be true for others.
Nowadays, the boundary between work and personal or leisure time is getting blurry. There are times when one can’t define specific times for work and for personal tasks because they overlap.
Too much screen time is also not healthy for us and might lead to sleep problems, chronic neck and back problems, obesity, depression, burnout, and anxiety.
If you’re still thinking about whether the work-from-home setup is here to stay or not, you can consider its advantages and disadvantages to weigh things out. However, considering its environmental impacts, remote work is said to contribute to lower carbon emissions because individuals do not have to commute as frequently.
Some individuals may still prefer the work-from-home arrangement after COVID-19, maybe since they have become accustomed to it, while others may want to return to the way things were before the pandemic. Nonetheless, one thing is certain: working from home will continue to be an option in the future.