The reality of returning to work
If you are anything like me and the millions of workers who are either on furlough or working remotely, life has been a bit of a struggle getting a balance between the two. My wife works for the NHS, so has been working hard since the outbreak. My children are at home learning right now, as their school makes the necessary changes to protect them. Which leaves me, operating a training company 6 feet away from my bed as this was the only space available to allow me to continue working safely.
The choice was not my own to work from home. Vital Workplace Training saw a dramatic fall in live training bookings as the pandemic took hold, forcing the decision to isolate the staff. It is likely I cannot go back to the “office” for some time as I share the office space with two other people.
Every morning, once the kids have settled into home learning and my wife carries on with the household chores between shifts, my ever-growing list of work items seems impossible to attain. I sit with my coffee, staring at the hastily erected whiteboard on my bedroom wall and contemplate if remote working is the best solution for us.
Remote working is the concept that people who have a job that is non-essential or who work mostly from a desk or computer, can transfer their work schedule from the normal workplace to a home-based desk or space. This has the immediate benefit of considerably reducing the exposure risk to COVID-19 while maintaining the social distancing guidelines, published by gov.uk (check out our COVID advice page). The ongoing benefits are yet to be seen, but the major downfall is that many job roles that involved teams of employees consulting each other or working on joint collaborations cannot speak face to face. A real challenge if you’re anything like me, where I thrive on social contact. So what can we do about this issue? Non-essential workplaces can return to their normal workplace, but should we?