The number of people working from home has risen to its highest level since records began. SO maybe time for us to design a onesie for working from home. According to the Office for National Statistics there were 4.2 million UK home workers in 2014, amounting to 13.9% of the workforce. But the TUC have said UK bosses still did not trust their staff to work from home, “Too many bosses still don’t trust staff to work from home and instead force them to trudge into the office so they can keep an eye on them,” said Frances O’Grady, the TUC’s general secretary.”Employers’ attitudes to new working practices must change to make a much better use of modern technology in all workplaces,” she said.
Research out recently from Altodigital suggests that may be the TUC have a point. The study, which questioned 1000 UK adults, reveals that despite 40% of workers claiming their productivity more than doubles when working from home, that increase has a limited scope; peaking at just four hours a day, before it trails off. Maintaining a professional dress code also seems to create an issue for some, with one in ten admitting to having at some point worked naked while fielding client and colleague phone calls! Not video conferencing I hope. A slightly more modest 35% preferred to stay in their dressing gown or pyjamas while working and, interestingly, men are twice more likely than women to dress in smarter ‘office wear’ while working from home. A consultant social scientist, Anjula Mutanda, wheeled in to comment said: “It is important to be aware that how you dress may more subtly affect your mood , and it can be particularly challenging to maintain a professional and focused approach when working from home. You may enjoy being able to wear your dressing gown all day, but this may sub-consciously put you in the weekend relaxed mood and could slow you down.” So not a dressing gown or pyjamas then but may be a formal pin stripe onesie for working from home. It might keep you focused as 41% of respondents admitted to regularly skiving off when supposed to be working, with 6% revealing that they have skived off for a full working day. The top distractions were watching TV (24%), household chores (27%) and playing with children (26%).