Work from Home Day: Covid pandemic shows potential for more homeworking and support needs for those who can’t
The UK’ annual Work from Home Day takes place today – Friday 14 May – organised by Work Wise UK.
The restrictions introduced to counter the spread of Covid-19 have been dramatic. They have completely changed our way of life, with many more people having to work from home. Some employers and workers are experiencing it for the first time.
Work Wise UK says that it could present a vision of the future, with an opportunity to promote change and modernise the way we work. And it is a sign of the potential for a new industrial revolution, driven by digital technologies.
The benefits it has highlighted include:
- Time saving – two or three days homeworking each week could free up the equivalent of an entire working day.
- Reduced emissions and congestion – as well as lower emissions from less commutes, digital applications like MS Teams and Zoom mean that travel is not necessary for meetings.
- Reduced stress – the time saving and reduced travel can help reduce stress levels and allow more time for friends and family (although Workwise recognises that this may not be the case currently with worries about the pandemic and the demands of childcare and home-schooling children).
Work Wise UK also recognises the difficulties faced by those for whom homeworking has not been an option during the pandemic and is calling on government to ensure all types of worker have greater support to reduce the stresses of their working lives.
Phil Flaxton, Chief Executive of Work Wise UK, organisers of National Work from Home Day said:
“As we come out of this pandemic, there is a huge opportunity to make fundamental changes to the way we work and the way we live. Government, employers and unions should work together on ways to extend the positive aspects of homeworking beyond the pandemic to more working people.
“In the longer term, these new ways of working should be designed into our new communities. Every major development plan around Britain, such as the new garden communities, should be designed to aid homeworking and home delivery instead of focusing on the motor car and shopping destinations.”