The verdict after three weeks back in the office

srams21

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Another benefit is the ability to recruit employees from anywhere in the country and not being stuck with a local employee pool. Some areas of the country have a larger pool of applicants that have specialized education or backgrounds in certain fields, think being able to run a software development company out of Maine with a hiring pool of employees in Silicon Valley.
This is, imo, the number one benefit to employers and it shocks me more employers don't understand and take advantage of it.
 

ping72

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Jan 14, 2009
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Productivity is way up from everyone in my field. There are some tech issues being that we move very large files back and forth and some of the television networks/media companies I work for have strict security which causes the tech issues, but all and all they have it worked out. Three years ago, if you asked whether they could do this work remotely they would say you were crazy. Speaking of which, the show runner for Colbert's show said that specifically as many others working in the field.

And the crazy thing about the productivity numbers is that they’re predominantly coming from the companies themselves. It’s not like it’s research paid for by unions or anything.

And that is why a lot of people are getting pissed. The company releases numbers that their productivity is up with people people working from home… And then in the same breath they tell everyone they have to return to the office. It is literally a lose/lose situation.
 

ping72

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This is, imo, the number one benefit to employers and it shocks me more employers don't understand and take advantage of it.

Especially in places like rural Iowa.

And, similarly, A lot of rural places have had tremendous success recruiting people from bigger cities to come live the slow life since they can work from home. There are many people who do not like living in a big city, but that’s typically where the best jobs are found. Now those same people can be happier and find a better cost of living AND keep the same good job.
 

NCHawk5

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This is, imo, the number one benefit to employers and it shocks me more employers don't understand and take advantage of it.
If you’re already nationwide, this is true. Dealing with west coast states is not fun in my experience.
 

SI_NYC

HR MVP
Dec 15, 2001
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And the crazy thing about the productivity numbers is that they’re predominantly coming from the companies themselves. It’s not like it’s research paid for by unions or anything.

And that is why a lot of people are getting pissed. The company releases numbers that their productivity is up with people people working from home… And then in the same breath they tell everyone they have to return to the office. It is literally a lose/lose situation.
General Tso is on to something when he said it was all a caste system. Those executives at big corporations love being the kings and they just don't have the same feeling when they are at home as when everyone is kissing their asses in the office.
 

SoDakHawk

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Sep 14, 2006
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Especially in places like rural Iowa.

And, similarly, A lot of rural places have had tremendous success recruiting people from bigger cities to come live the slow life since they can work from home. There are many people who do not like living in a big city, but that’s typically where the best jobs are found. Now those same people can be happier and find a better cost of living AND keep the same good job.
Yep. WFH could be a game changer for Rural America. it's why high speed internet and communications infrastructure across rural areas is so important. WFH could be pivotal for the country because, honestly, it's not good to have everybody lumped into urban areas with deserted wasteland in between. A nicely spread out population is best.
 

SolarHawk

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Yep. WFH could be a game changer for Rural America. it's why high speed internet and communications infrastructure across rural areas is so important. WFH could be pivotal for the country because, honestly, it's not good to have everybody lumped into urban areas with deserted wasteland in between. A nicely spread out population is best.
Never considered this aspect, but it’s a great point.
 

HawkeyeShawn

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Nov 9, 2001
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I much prefer working in the office. I like keeping my home and work life as separate as possible.

Personally, I think those of you clamoring to have your work be part of your daily home life are nucking futs.
I get back 90 minutes a day and save over $3000 in gas, plus all the miles on my car. Bonus, I’m doing my part to fight climate change. I love working from home. The company I work for likely gets 5-10 extra hours of work per week. When in the office, we’d roll in around 8:30, coffee and BS meant we would really get started around 9. 1 hour lunches, sometimes longer. Most roll out of the office between 4:30 and 5:00. Working from home, I’m starting before 8, don’t take a lunch or at the most, 15 minutes and work well past 5. Before I wouldn’t pull into my driveway until 6 or after.

I manage a team of 14. 50% of them weee hired during the pandemic and are in other states. They couldn’t come into the office if we tried to enforce it. Heck, my boss is in Dallas. Our office is in Omaha. Toothpaste is out of the tube where I work.
 

Aardvark86

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Jan 23, 2018
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Being in the office for any mandated period of time is pointless. I'd predict that most companies with mandated time in the office will slowly move to a purely flexible model where people come and go as they choose. I'm not against being in the office when there is a specific reason for it (like a team meeting, project, etc) but the 'spontaneous collaboration' and culture reasons are 100% bullshit. Most people are sitting in their cubes in zoom calls anyway. Fire away..m
My law firm tracks key card swipes. Since encouraging return, partners show up. Associates don’t.
 
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ihhawk

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Feb 4, 2004
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I do want to point out that the ability to work from home has completely changed my future in respect to my ability to live in Iowa and in Florida.
 

StormHawk42

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Nov 3, 2009
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It’s not for me personally. I enjoy being able to bounce ideas off those around me sitting across the table or walking down the hall to dk the same thing. Just not the same over Zoom. Also agree about the networking aspect.

But we do have a 2 day WFH option if we choose.

Flexibility is the future. No doubt about it.
 
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ping72

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Jan 14, 2009
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General Tso is on to something when he said it was all a caste system. Those executives at big corporations love being the kings and they just don't have the same feeling when they are at home as when everyone is kissing their asses in the office.

I agree, but I find it’s often the high middle managers making the push. The very senior people often have stuff to do. But a level or two lower and they don’t really do anything, they just manage a team or project (or two or three) and “monitor/maintain progress” or “watch for troublespots” and spit updates up the chain every now and then. With everyone WFH, they have nobody to stand behind and hassle for being 2 minutes late and feel lost... or worse, afraid people will figure out they don’t add a whole lot of value.
 

SI_NYC

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Dec 15, 2001
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I agree, but I find it’s often the high middle managers making the push. The very senior people often have stuff to do. But a level or two lower and they don’t really do anything, they just manage a team or project (or two or three) and “monitor/maintain progress” or “watch for troublespots” and spit updates up the chain every now and then. With everyone WFH, they have nobody to stand behind and hassle for being 2 minutes late and feel lost... or worse, afraid people will figure out they don’t add a whole lot of value.
Celebrities are the same. I’ve worked with some really well known artists and celebrities and they were really kind and cool people. A majority of the C level celebs in my experience are just assholes and treat people they view as below them like crap.
 
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General Tso

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Nov 20, 2004
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Especially in places like rural Iowa.

And, similarly, A lot of rural places have had tremendous success recruiting people from bigger cities to come live the slow life since they can work from home. There are many people who do not like living in a big city, but that’s typically where the best jobs are found. Now those same people can be happier and find a better cost of living AND keep the same good job.
Except Cedar Rapids. "Come live in Cedar Rapids. There's a nice city somewhere under those layers of crud."
 

MuscoHawk

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Oct 6, 2005
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I’ve been forced back to the office 2 days per week since April.

It’s pointless.

I spend the entire day in my office, door closed, on Zoom. I’ve had ONE in-person group meeting in over a month.

Between before-school care for the kids, dog daycare, gas and tolls, I spend over $700 a month to be in the office for 2 days a week. F*cking brilliant.

This isn’t sustainable. The workforce hates it. Of course, it was brought up on our national call last week. I don’t know how the leadership kept straight faces as they bullshited about in-person interaction, collaboration, brainstorming, blah blah blah…
 

ping72

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Jan 14, 2009
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I’ve been forced back to the office 2 days per week since April.

It’s pointless.

I spend the entire day in my office, door closed, on Zoom. I’ve had ONE in-person group meeting in over a month.

Between before-school care for the kids, dog daycare, gas and tolls, I spend over $700 a month to be in the office for 2 days a week. F*cking brilliant.

This isn’t sustainable. The workforce hates it. Of course, it was brought up on our national call last week. I don’t know how the leadership kept straight faces as they bullshited about in-person interaction, collaboration, brainstorming, blah blah blah…
There are two open jobs for every unemployed person. And new hire salaries are rising fast because of it. Take a look around, you never know what you may find. Lots of people are finding both much better pay and flexibility/wfh.
 

Hawk_4shur

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Jan 2, 2009
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It depends on the industry, but for mine - auditing/consulting, the associates wanting to work solely from home are setting themselves up to be good worker bees, but WAY behind on networking, teambuilding, leadership, business development -all the things that will help you rise up to the higher levels of the organization.

I have a mentee that was hired to be out of my local office - Tyson's Corner, VA, but because of covid he never moved down here. He still lives in NJ. As people are starting to come back to the office more and hang out with each other, he's at a competitive disadvantage. It's not counting against him at this point, because there's still a lot of discretion/flexibility, but it's also not counting for him and his career development.
Agreed. My career was in audit/tax/consulting for 35 years.

I always found that it wasn't the tasks that gave me job satisfaction, is was the constant interaction with co-workers, clients, support staff. I would not have been successful working at home, nor would I have enjoyed my career.

But, that's me.
 

SA_Hawk

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I saw this yesterday
"In what could be the most encouraging chart I read this morning, Quill Intelligence reported those working from home to be down to 7.7% of the workforce, the lowest reading post-pandemic (it was 40%)"
 
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Hawk_4shur

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Jan 2, 2009
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Reduce footprint to save on rent would be the big obvious one. That would also include savings on all the other things that come with reduced footprint: fewer desks/chairs/phones/office supplies.

Then there's the company by company benefits like productivity and satisfied workforce.
As more and more employers become less and less concentrated in one spot (many locations around the country instead of a HQ model), working from home makes perfect sense.

My son works for a company that has multiple locations. In his local office, he is the only one there that works in his department. It makes little sense to force him into the office (and they're not). But pre-Covid, he spent 10 years with the company building relationships, so it's easier for him to adjust to working from home,

But, another son has only been at his job a few years - he works from home as well, but I don't think he has the established relationships yet. He rarely sees his boss. Seems like it would be harder to "shine" as an employee.

Another thing - if most of the executives in a company are over, say 50 or 55, it's harder for them to wrap their heads around the remote workforce. Some of the technology is difficult perhaps. Or, after spending 30 years doing things one way it's hard to simply pivot to a completely different way or working.
 

Rudolph

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Oct 18, 2001
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I think I'm just a weirdo. Believe it or not, I MISS my commute! I listen to less podcasts and audio-books now and feel dumber for it. I also enjoyed the 50 minutes of decompression time on the drive home, which allowed me to leave work stress and issues AT WORK and not bring them home.

That said, I totally support and encourage flex time. Yesterday, I had contractors finishing up some work (my new bar is in!!) and so I worked from home all morning and only attended a couple afternoon meetings in person. I'd be very happy with a 4/1 or 3/2 "work/home" ratio schedule too. But during the bulk of the pandemic it was ZERO office and 5-days-a-week from home and I thought that sucked bigly.

Flexibility is the key. Like in most things, a binary/black and white solution is probably not the best. Work from home when you need/want to and work in the office when you need/want to. As long as the work is getting done at a quality level, it shouldn't really matter.
I’m two days at my studio three at the office.

I liked my NYC commute for similar reasons as you describe.
 
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Rudolph

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Oct 18, 2001
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Yep. WFH could be a game changer for Rural America. it's why high speed internet and communications infrastructure across rural areas is so important. WFH could be pivotal for the country because, honestly, it's not good to have everybody lumped into urban areas with deserted wasteland in between. A nicely spread out population is best.
Uh oh another green new deal guy!!
 
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Flie

HR MVP
Nov 2, 2001
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I'm reading all the positives being related here for working from home and I'm not seeing anything that benefits the employer...

Happier employees and reduced facilities expense. I also see people working through lunch, starting earlier, and working later than they were when everyone was in the office.
 
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Tenacious E

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What's the context? I haven't had any issues with remote mentoring sessions.

I can see where it could be an issue with hands on type of work but it works well in the business world.
Running a law firm, handling and meeting with clients, grooming associates for partnership, etc…
 
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CLUB215

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Apr 28, 2015
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It depends on the industry, but for mine - auditing/consulting, the associates wanting to work solely from home are setting themselves up to be good worker bees, but WAY behind on networking, teambuilding, leadership, business development -all the things that will help you rise up to the higher levels of the organization.

I have a mentee that was hired to be out of my local office - Tyson's Corner, VA, but because of covid he never moved down here. He still lives in NJ. As people are starting to come back to the office more and hang out with each other, he's at a competitive disadvantage. It's not counting against him at this point, because there's still a lot of discretion/flexibility, but it's also not counting for him and his career development.
Step 1: you recognized the discrepancy in your organization in how you treat people based on physical location. You could move on to Step 2: addressing that, if you wanted.
 

General Tso

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Nov 20, 2004
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They are not. Our associates never come to the office. I understand that the department they work in they get very discrete assignments and don’t have to to manage an entire case, but they are missing out on a lot by not coming in
Respectfully, this is the point exactly. What the old world order sees as "missing out on a lot by not coming" the new world order sees as "gaining alot by not coming in." They do the work, help the company advance, etc more efficiently but shed the unnecessary elements of office small talk, gossip, hobnobbing, three bosses strolling to their cube asking for the same thing, etc. People want to maximize time on personal relationships with people they choose to be with, not people they're forced to sit by in the office.
 
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Capital1Hawk

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Jan 23, 2007
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Running a law firm, handling and meeting with clients, grooming associates for partnership, etc…
This..... I'm a soon to be retired partner and the young associates are going to be the ones hurt by not being in the office. We trained the upper management team very well and now they are at home not passing on that knowledge to the new associates.

The new associates are not going to be in client meetings, overhear phone conversations partners have with clients/how to handle various matters. They won't sufficiently be trained remotely. They will have less delegated tasks. Why would I write a 10 minute email with instructions if I could swing by your office and tell you what to do in 1 minute. May as well do myself so reverse delegation is happening.

EO insurance is going to increase as more mistakes/claims will be made from engineering, law, finance, etc. I think flexibility is fine but should still be in the office a few days per week to keep culture/training.