Working from home, what are the benefits and what are the pitfalls?

Working from home is becoming more and more common and women in particular often choose to work from home, so that it is easier to combine a job and children. But is the combination of working from home and children really ideal? What are the advantages of working from home and what are the disadvantages? Does working from home really make the combination of work and private life easier?

Does working from home make the combination of work and private life easier?

It sounds so nice, working from home and thus quickly switching between home and work. In practice it is often less easy. The result is often that working hours are shifted to late at night. During the day you are more often distracted by household matters and environmental noise. Moreover, you have to build up a routine yourself. You need a certain structure, but not everyone has the discipline to impose it on themselves. You must also set clear boundaries and guard your time. It is often easier for your partner to delegate household tasks to you. You’re home after all. Housemates have a quick question and interrupt you in between. The boss thinks that you have more time because you are not bothered by commuting and he therefore thinks that you can do some more work.

Social contacts and working from home

When you work from home, you have to put more time and energy into maintaining communication with colleagues and manager. Otherwise you run the risk of being overlooked. Communication via email and telephone is more superficial. You lack facial expressions and this makes communication difficult. You are rarely in the office, so you are easily forgotten when it comes to salary increases, fun projects and promotions. You can also feel very isolated if you no longer have regular contact with colleagues. You miss all the small talk and this makes the relationship with colleagues more distant. Therefore, try to use the moments when you do come to the office socially. Morning at the office? Don’t run straight home afterwards, but go for lunch with your colleagues every now and then. As a homeworker, you will have to go out more often to socialize.

Computer equipment of the home worker

If your computer equipment is defective, you must have enough know-how to solve the problem yourself or you must be able to rely on someone who understands it. You don’t have an IT department at home to solve your computer problems. You often spend unnecessary time on all kinds of IT problems.

The homeworker works overtime

Paying overtime is often poorly arranged for home workers. The boss does not see that you are working overtime and is often somewhat dismissive of paying overtime. This often has to do with trust. The employer is quickly inclined to think that you benefit from the moments when it is less busy. In his opinion, this may be offset by pushing the envelope when it is busy.

Win win situation

If properly implemented and well thought out, working from home can be a win-win situation for employer and employee. The employer saves on office costs, and employees who can work from home a lot are generally more motivated and do more work. Teleworking is only possible when the employee performs independent work that requires little communication and face-to-face contact. Moreover, the work must be measurable. The latter prevents a suspicious boss, who wonders whether enough work is being done at home.

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