Where do you WFH? A study (ish)

Where do you WFH? A study (ish)

Last week, I put a huge *coughs* poll out on twitter and LinkedIn asking where do you WFH?: “desk in a private room”, “table in a shared space” or “sofa”. Here are the results and my take on what they mean…

The HUGE *coughs* Data set…

  • I lied when I said a huge *coughs* data set:  75 people answered across the two polls, with an additional 10 getting in touch through DMs (as is the limit of my influence on social!)
  • 20% of people who answered on twitter said they work from “the sofa” – roughly 1 in 10 across the polls
  • On LinkedIn, 59% answered “desk in a private room” – the majority had the words ‘Managing’, ‘Senior’, ‘Founder’ etc in their titles
  • 12% got in touch through DMs to say “on my bed”, an option I hadn’t even included
  • Adding the polls together, half have only had access to a shared space to work during lockdown (it’s worth considering: the research was skewed with more senior people answering, so it’s probably more)

So what?
WFH isn’t going away anytime soon. It really isn’t. Sure, the day we’re all allowed back in the office we’ll throw a big party and, while offices will hardly become a thing of the past, the concept of spending 1hr – 2hrs commuting every workday in someone’s armpit or while sucking in exhaust fumes has lost some of its charm.

The longer-term trends in how often people work from an office v remotely remain to be seen but it seems highly unlikely that, once behind us, this pandemic will do anything other than accelerate it… For now, lockdown rules apply (anything goes) – but if WFH isn’t as
comfortable, connected and creative as it could be for your business and your staff in the future, it will become increasingly important.

Basic things we’re doing:
A dedicated WeWork desk in London will set you back £500 a month or more, having pulled out of a deal on an office, we put that cash towards remote working:

  • Don’t bring your work home, they said. LOL. We give our team options of a desk to fit the best space, cable management (yawn, tell me about it!), a laptop that doesn’t annoy them, a second – even third – screen, a small bursary for plants, and – despite nearly canning the idea because of the cost of decent chairs – we make sure our team are sitting comfortably.
  • ‘Output not hours’ This set-up at home can lead to an ‘always on’ mentality – we set time limits on working hours and enforce breaks, even if they don’t fit the usual 9 – 5 (or 6).
  • Tech this out… An IT system that doesn’t work seamlessly across office and remote will bring chaos. Microsoft 365 with SharePoint synced to file explorer and Azure is phenomenal for, what, £15 a month.
  • #workbantz MS Teams. It’s beginning to go down in lockdown folklore as another Zoom. Don’t be so hateful, it’s great. We keep a video feed open all day for people to drop in and out as they please, letting us have a laugh and share information organically without setting up too many structured meetings.

A few caveats…

  • This research could have been carried out to adhere to MRS’ standards, but I thought it would be more fun to look at how you work… it’s clearly not broad enough to paint a true picture
  • We’re not experts on remote working, just case studies… like most of you
  • It’s easier to implement for four than forty – remote working was forced on edible group with enough time to plan
  • As with everything, we hope you’re holding strong financially. If you are, looking at how and when your team will work remotely after all of ‘this’ is a must
  • No, that is not my office! This time next year, Rodney.