WFH – “Work from Home” – is ideal for many employees. Working from home or even from a beach resort. What could go wrong with that? <read more>
The benefits of working from home certainly can’t be minimized. During the pandemic, it’s enabled parents to be home and supervise their children who are schooling online. Employees don’t have to deal with the hassles and costs of commuting.
But there’s another side of WFH. Here are five significant WFH threats and challenges from the employee’s perspective:
- Technology limitations. Videoconferencing strains home network bandwidth – especially in the case where an employee’s children and partner are all competing for limited space. Just because we’re getting used to seeing frozen images and names in place of faces, doesn’t mean we’re liking it any better! And do you want to be responsible for knocking your child off-line as they do a class assignment?
- Overwork and burnout. For some, given that there are little other opportunities for outside distraction, the temptation is to gravitate toward work and the home office after hours. We were already pretty bad about checking work emails on our phones at all hours, now we’re logging on to do more than that. And experts say that the often hour-by-hour shifting between home and work responsibilities is especially wearing.
- Potential double-tax consequences. Depending on the state, if the company you work for is in one state and you work remotely in another, you might be subject to taxation in both. Here’s an article from the Tax Foundation with more information.
- Decreased productivity. Homes are full of distractions. The ability to multi-task between home chores, workout breaks, family activity, and work assignments seems like a luxury, but work will inevitably be the element that gets short shrift. And on another front, work calendars are quickly becoming back-to-back blocks of videoconferences. The quick check-ins with a colleague in an office huddle room or a deskside chat now must be scheduled, further decreasing your productive work time.
- Loss of Connection. While it’s possible to host unstructured team events through videoconferencing, for many people, these don’t feel natural. The computer screen can be a barrier to true spontaneous communication – the kind of communication that helps bond a team and form a work family.