More than half of Britons (57%) are satisfied with their work lives in lockdown, according to a nationwide poll that reveals we’re learning new skills while working from home.
A massive 87% of office workers now find themselves working from home on a regular basis for the first time, according to research conducted by O2.
The study showed that while people are enjoying benefits of working from home, with 53% delighted by the lack of the commute and 38% of us finding more time to keep on top of household chores.
However, many of us are still encountering challenges when it comes to remote working. Some 39% people cited a lack of suitable working space at home as the biggest challenge, followed by having to juggle work and childcare (27%).
Over four in ten (42%) now reside in the living room to work, with just under a quarter (24%) escaping to the bedroom and 22% choosing the kitchen as their new home office space.
But even these challenges bring their benefits, with many finding new-found comfort in their work wear: 41% now sport gym clothes as their regular working attire, one third (33%) are opting for a smart causal style and one in eight of us (13%) remain in our pyjamas.
While 33% of people miss having face to face meetings, the survey also revealed that many have already learnt new skills to help them keep in touch as an outcome of the social distancing measures, from setting up video calls (26% said working from home meant they’d done this for the first time) to using Google Docs (12%) and cloud storage platforms (11%).
The research also revealed that despite 48% missing the sense of routine, 36% are enjoying having more time to themselves. This additional time is being spent in a variety of ways: 34% have started a home exercise programme to help make sure they stay fit and healthy; almost a fifth (19%) are finding more time for home baking and a further 16% have started listening to podcasts.
Meanwhile, a trip to the fridge has replaced the traditional tea and coffee office break, with 20% of home workers now making ten or more trips back and forth from the fridge every day.
During what can be a challenging time, there are lots of tools and methods that can help make the transition to working remotely easier and more effective. To help more people enjoy the benefits of working from home O2 produced some top tips for those new to homeworking:
Create an ‘office space’ in your home
Try as much as possible to create an office environment in the home, with clear desk space (even if it’s just a clear, temptation-free section of the kitchen table). This applies to your schedule too: try to separate your work life from your home life to be more productive.
Use video calls
Being out of your normal office doesn’t mean you need to miss out on meetings with your teams, colleagues, clients and suppliers. Video conferencing services such as Microsoft Teams and Google Hangout will help you feel more connected, and help get the team spirit going while you’re social distancing.
Stay in touch with colleagues
Instant messaging software, such as Slack or Skype can help you keep in touch with colleagues on a less formal level, and helps declutter your inbox by keeping your emails completely work and action-focused.
Look into protecting your devices with network monitoring to block malicious behaviour, using app analysis to detect known and unknown threats. Keep your devices secured with intelligent threat detection technology that can monitor multiple attacks, contain threats and report incidents.
Turn off the Wi-Fi
Lastly, whilst it’s important for your and your team’s state of mind to keep a constant flow of communication, don’t be afraid to switch off the Wi-Fi completely if you need to focus on an important task.
Notes to Editors
*O2 commissioned OnePoll to survey a representative sample of UK employed adults who usually work externally but are currently working from home due to the coronavirus situation.