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Working from home dies a death - remote switches to hybrid... lots of people in trouble because of unworkable commutes


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I work in finance/tech sector so know alot of people who previously worked in big offices in city centres. Anyway, something's happened...

The "work from home forever" crowd who no doubt moved well beyond commutable distance are now being told "hybrid working" is the future with 3-days per week in the office... except they're buggered because they are living hours away - sometimes without transport connections (and where they exist they can be a tad expensive). 

That changed faster than I was expective... Within my circle of a couple of hundred I know half a dozen who are already in trouble. I hate to say it by Kirsty was right! 

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My office (not in the UK) has informed me that people in the office will currently have to wear a mask at all times, unless they have their own personal office and are alone!

 

Was complaining about home office, but maybe I will try to spin it out a bit longer.

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If an employer wants someone to work so many days per week in a certain place they often will pay more to cover for the rent for two or three nights a week away from home......there are many people with a spare bedroom who would be happy to rent it out for an extra income tax free two or three weekdays a week.....win,win.;)

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Maybe to an extent, but 2-3 days a week commute is still vastly different to 5. I used to do 2 hour commutes each way, 5 days a week - I wouldn't any more. I think I could handle 2 days a week if I had to. It still makes a big difference.

Edit to add: I would never have bet on fully remote anyway, at least not to the extent of upping sticks and moving out of commutable range. Some sort of hybrid arrangement always seemed the most likely outcome to me.

Edited by mattyboy1973
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I have seen this too. It is completely astonishing that people have moved so quickly, expecting WFH to be permanent. A real error of judgement. Seemingly rational/logical people.

The timescale of a permanent shift to WFH is ten years, not one. Reassess in ten years time, and only then might I consider moving out of the city...

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37 minutes ago, gruffydd said:

I work in finance/tech sector so know alot of people who previously worked in big offices in city centres. Anyway, something's happened...

The "work from home forever" crowd who no doubt moved well beyond commutable distance are now being told "hybrid working" is the future with 3-days per week in the office... except they're buggered because they are living hours away - sometimes without transport connections (and where they exist they can be a tad expensive). 

That changed faster than I was expective... Within my circle of a couple of hundred I know half a dozen who are already in trouble. I hate to say it by Kirsty was right! 

It’s a bit of a stretch to suggest that within the last year there has been a mass migration of office workers to well beyond a reasonable commute isn’t it?!

The company I work for (owned by Jacobs) are firmly opposed to home working on a full-time basis - they won’t let any of us do it even though many roles can wholly be done remotely.

We’ve been told we can work a maximum of 2 days from home. They canvased opinion then reported their findings creatively to support their predictable position.   

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11 minutes ago, Notting Hell said:

I have seen this too. It is completely astonishing that people have moved so quickly, expecting WFH to be permanent. A real error of judgement. Seemingly rational/logical people.

Maybe for some people. Not for me, as I knew I could just get a job elsewhere if my workplace didn't follow through, which I now have done.

I'm sorry you're stuck in the office.

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12 minutes ago, Notting Hell said:

I have seen this too. It is completely astonishing that people have moved so quickly, expecting WFH to be permanent. A real error of judgement. Seemingly rational/logical people.

You're a HPCr, dude at what point did you think people were rational? 

12 minutes ago, Notting Hell said:

The timescale of a permanent shift to WFH is ten years, not one. Reassess in ten years time, and only then might I consider moving out of the city...

 

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11 minutes ago, Pmax2020 said:

We’ve been told we can work a maximum of 2 days from home. They canvased opinion then reported their findings creatively to support their predictable position.   

Yes. One of the posters on here @Confusion of VIssaid he was involved in such canvassing. I really have my doubts at the results because pretty much all of my network want to work from home as often as possible, though not full time. We want the option to work a full week at home if that is what suits us in a particular week.

My big corp company is pretending that everyone wants to get back to the office, so I've tendered my resignation in favour of somewhere that offers me what I want.

Edited by dugsbody
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1 hour ago, winkie said:

If an employer wants someone to work so many days per week in a certain place they often will pay more to cover for the rent for two or three nights a week away from home......there are many people with a spare bedroom who would be happy to rent it out for an extra income tax free two or three weekdays a week.....win,win.;)

In what sense is somebody with a full time job spending 3 nights every week as a lodger in somebody else's home a win for them? Or does the 2xwin refer to the employer and the landlord both getting what they want, not the poor bludger doing the actual productive work and paying double accommodation costs?

Edited by Dorkins
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The chaos of all this is fun to watch.

Just when everyone is back working 3 days/week at the office, there will be a new WFH directive due to variants, hospitalisations etc. Or in any given office, a few positive tests and in-office transmissions will occur and that'll be game over for the office.

Doesn't matter whether one agrees with lockdowns or not, people will vote with their feet, and the fact is the majority of productive working age people are not anti-lockdown.

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1 hour ago, gruffydd said:


That changed faster than I was expective... Within my circle of a couple of hundred I know half a dozen who are already in trouble. I hate to say it by Kirsty was right! 

What did Kirsty say? I must’ve missed it.

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Luckily I live close enough to my office and in all honesty while I’ve enjoyed a year of being at home with the newborn, the distractions are becoming a bit too frequent. I have my own ‘office’ in the house but no number of walls or distance prevent the frequent disruptions I’ll get until all the kids are a bit older and of course at school for much of the day. 

I tend to work a couple of evenings to compensate for feeling as though I’m not quite operating as efficiently at times. I would say though that the pandemic has rightly shone a light on the notion that working 9-5 Monday to Friday in an office is completely unnecessary in 2021 for millions of people given the technology we now have. 

That said, a few local authorities near by are advertising technical/engineering jobs with ads stating “home working” as the location. To me this is madness. The idea that anyone in the UK could get a job hundreds of miles from where you are operating is short sighted to say the least. 

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4 minutes ago, Dorkins said:

In what sense is somebody with a full time job spending 3 nights every week as a lodger in somebody else's home a win for them? Or does the 2xwin refer to the employer and the landlord both getting what they want, not the poor bludger doing the actual productive work and paying double accommodation costs?

A growing number of people live outside of cities now, get more property for their money for less......they can spend five days a week with their family doing work from home online, and travel into town to catch up with colleagues or clients (and mates) for a couple of days a week, actually they might know the people they are staying with, or known from social or work contacts......they might have been brought up in a place they can no longer afford to live in, if an employer wants them to be there they should not be made to be out of pocket because of it.;)

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41 minutes ago, dugsbody said:

Yes. One of the posters on here @Confusion of VIssaid he was involved in such canvassing. I really have my doubts at the results because pretty much all of my network want to work from home as often as possible, though not full time. We want the option to work a full week at home if that is what suits us in a particular week.

My big corp company is pretending that everyone wants to get back to the office, so I've tendered my resignation in favour of somewhere that offers me what I want.

There was a big split, the younger staff overwhelmingly wanted to get back to the central London office, as you went up the age range it dropped off but overall most wanted to get back. Also a pretty strong link with ambition, even if its never stated most staff have realised that WFH will not help career progression. 

The corporate view is that we want staff we see as core back in the office 3 or 4 days a week. From attending a few cross company working group meetings that's a pretty common view across the sector. 

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Confusion of VIs said:

There was a big split, the younger staff overwhelmingly wanted to get back to the central London office, as you went up the age range it dropped off but overall most wanted to get back. Also a pretty strong link with ambition, even if its never stated most staff have realised that WFH will not help career progression. 

The corporate view is that we want staff we see as core back in the office 3 or 4 days a week. From attending a few cross company working group meetings that's a pretty common view across the sector. 

 

 

🤣🤣

CIV you sound like a middling manager soaked in presenteeism coming up with stuff like that. 

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43 minutes ago, Confusion of VIs said:

There was a big split, the younger staff overwhelmingly wanted to get back to the central London office, as you went up the age range it dropped off but overall most wanted to get back. Also a pretty strong link with ambition, even if its never stated most staff have realised that WFH will not help career progression. 

The corporate view is that we want staff we see as core back in the office 3 or 4 days a week. From attending a few cross company working group meetings that's a pretty common view across the sector.

Hence why I resigned from big corp. I agree, core staff were being asked to return to the office and I didn't want to, so off I go.

I agree, career progression will be helped by presenteeism. Most people don't realise that being liked is often the difference in promotion, bonus, salary when you're in a very competitive field where everyone around you is talented anyway.

But I'm past that now. I've achieved a lot and now have a family to consider. I'm off to (what I hope is) a more dynamic environment where they really do walk the walk about remote working and empowering employees to be productive. I'm afraid that big corps are slowly ending up with dinosaurs who can't make it elsewhere.

Anyway, still three months to go, though I'm hoping most of that I'll be put on gardening leave.

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We’ve gone to the hybrid model but it’s all very touchy feely at the moment, “come back if you feel safe to, we’d love to see you etc etc”. I give it 3 months before they crack the whip and mandate 3 days per week one of which is fixed as your departmental day.

 

Personally I miss the office and as good as the IT solutions are nothing replaces having face to face interaction with people. If anything I’ve found the last 6 months working from home on my own quite depressing.

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52 minutes ago, MonsieurCopperCrutch said:

🤣🤣

CIV you sound like a middling manager soaked in presenteeism coming up with stuff like that. 

Not hard to predict that younger staff in overcrowded HMOs just want to get bank to the office and escape their living hell. 

Non senior staff need physical presence of senior staff to grow faster. 

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3 hours ago, gruffydd said:

I work in finance/tech sector so know alot of people who previously worked in big offices in city centres. Anyway, something's happened...

The "work from home forever" crowd who no doubt moved well beyond commutable distance are now being told "hybrid working" is the future with 3-days per week in the office... except they're buggered because they are living hours away - sometimes without transport connections (and where they exist they can be a tad expensive). 

That changed faster than I was expective... Within my circle of a couple of hundred I know half a dozen who are already in trouble. I hate to say it by Kirsty was right! 

2 or 3 days in office us fine - if theres a Premier Inn near.

Travel down, stay 2 nights, puss off back.

Nothing worse than 4h commuting, 5 days a week.

 

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2 hours ago, mattyboy1973 said:

Maybe to an extent, but 2-3 days a week commute is still vastly different to 5. I used to do 2 hour commutes each way, 5 days a week - I wouldn't any more. I think I could handle 2 days a week if I had to. It still makes a big difference.

Edit to add: I would never have bet on fully remote anyway, at least not to the extent of upping sticks and moving out of commutable range. Some sort of hybrid arrangement always seemed the most likely outcome to me.

Once you get to onoy travelling down for 2 or 3 days a week, commuter land to London opens up a vast area.

If this becomes establishedin - and I think it will - places like Exeter, Yawk, Leeds n Newcastle are viable.

The tradition 1h commute circle dies.

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