Just yesterday, a few friends of mine got to talking about working from home. Some companies have started to open up to the idea of letting people work from home. For companies this can actually be a good thing. They save up on overhead. They save up on space. But there can be dangers.
Distractions. I’ve tried the whole work from home thing. And while you can contemplate on hacking away at work comfortable in your pajamas, home can provide a whole lot of distractions that you don’t have at work. The TV. The chores. The pet. The kids. The oh-so-inviting bed.
Discipline. That means that working from home entails discipline. It’s just too easy to get caught in doing other stuff at home. You might even have to set up a home office and establish a routine just to make sure that you get on top of work.
Cost of overhead. One factor that people might overlook is the cost of overhead. At home, you might also carry the expense of just being there – electricity, cooling/heating, communications… At the office, these are all provided for. Sure, you might save on transportation but there are other costs to consider.
Monitoring and control can be a challenge. While there are plenty of online collaboration tools available (project management, document sharing, conferencing…) there is just no substitute to physical proximity. For managers, monitoring people can be a challenge.