Some say that if employees can spend at least 1 day a week working from home, then productivity can increase by up to 13%. Professor Lynda Grattan points out that in non-repetitive roles, e.g. with knowledge workers, productivity is more difficult to predict. She also points out that where remote workers don’t have great facilities at home, it is likely to be harder to be productive.
My daughter came home for 102 days during the pandemic and regularly worked from 09.00 until 19.00 without a break moving from one Zoom call to the next. Was this a productive time for her? Maybe. However, she is now back in her office in London for 2 days a week and very happy to be able to interact with others.
In the last 70,000 years as the human race has evolved, we have (on the whole) developed a desire to be with other humans and also established a sophisticated human communication system which thrives on personal contact.
Leaders must seek to understand what is best for their people and their businesses. Getting this balance right will ensure long term productivity.