Working from home fatigue flags future return to the office

November 2020

Stop the press ! Any plans to mothball swathes of office space and repurpose commercial lets can be put on hold. With welcome news of the approved vaccine sharing headline space with stories detailing the onset of working from home fatigue, we can now start planning for 2021.

 The next quarter could, in fact, be prime time to spruce up our offices and carry out interior make overs rather than consider locking the doors for good.

Sticking with the home front for now…

As reported recently in Personnel Today, the majority of office-based workers will likely be working from home until Easter 2021 as government advice remains to work from home for all those who can do so.

Hopefully by next April, access to vaccinations and rapid testing, along with the tight restrictions we have lived with for so long, will mean that it’s safe for a mass return to the towns and cities for office workers.

In the meantime, we can make the most of the next few months and focus our thoughts on the imminent return and how best to welcome people back through the doors.

Ready to return

The good news is that most of us are ready to come back to the office in one form or another.

According to a recent survey as featured in the HR Director and carried out by membership organization, Resilience First, more than half of remote workers are now suffering from working from home fatigue.

Having become jaded to the concept of working in pyjamas and avoiding the daily commute, the walls are closing in for many and there is a general air that a return to the office is welcome for most.

There is also a more pertinent, simple reason for the fore-mentioned fatigue. Many of us are working longer hours as there is a blurring of the lines that comes with the removal of a specific external work destination.

A lot of us have found that we’re quite simply never ‘off’.

A good time to review

With some time still ahead before a mass return to the office, most companies will have canvassed their teams and should have a good idea of what their workers want from the office, post pandemic.

Industry reports indicate that employees want more of an experience from their time in the office; a chance to be social and to collaborate again. On a more practical and specific note, having had to make do with home furniture that isn’t fit for purpose in the main, a lot of workers will value a good, ergonomically sound desk and chair.

Work in practice

Home working will remain a feature of our new working lives. It’s been viewed a success by many employers, surprised that there has been little evidence of any negative impact on results and productivity. Added to that, a lot of workers will still value the option to work from home as 2021 unfolds.

Overall, the preferred option for the majority is most likely to be a flexible working structure, with a mix of home and office working covering the working week.

The likely reason to be office-bound will be for the social and more creative aspects of work and it’s worth bearing this in mind for anyone looking to refurbish and introduce new furnishing and décor in the coming months, in preparation for a return. Workers will come into the office to collaborate and to meet up and be together and the best office spaces will reflect this new priority.

For ideas on what furniture might work best in your future work environment, providing stylish form and function, get in contact with us today.