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An increasing number of employers offer their employees the freedom and flexibility to solve at least parts of their weekly tasks from home.
Worldwide, up to 70% of all office workers nowadays are estimated to have the opportunity to work outside the office, including from home, at least once a week - 50% of them even up to half their working hours, current research shows.
But office work from home is not only a convenient perk - it also has its shades and back covers, a new English study shows.
Half of the 2,400 part-time home office workers responded that they miss their regular workspace routines. 28% feel depressed and lonely because they lose their daily work colleagues.
The survey from offices.co.uk shows that 69% miss out on workplace opportunities when working from home, while 83% may feel stressed about having to handle domestic tasks as well when working from home.
"It can be quite strenuous to take care of my marketing job from the home office, hold telephone meetings and the like if one of my two boys is lying sick at home," one of the respondents reports.
The UK survey shows that half of the part time homeworkers miss the regular daily
routines of their workspace. Photos: iStock
Also, from several other sides, be warned not to believe that the freedom to work from home is preferably an employee benefit granted by your good and understanding employer.
Experts even call your flexible working hours at home a potentially dangerous trend for the modern workplace and mention the risk of feeling lonely and reckless at home because of a lack of social interaction.
"If you work a lot from home, you more often encounter problems such as fatigue, concentration and sleep problems compared to your work colleagues in the company's office environment," CEO of the German research institute WIdO, Helmut Schröder states.
The institute has just published a research analysis that - based on 2,000 full-time employees between the ages of 16 and 65 - also focuses on the disadvantages, including the psychologically significant burden, of working from home.
The stress can be caused, among other things, by the fact that every third working
at home rather often sits in the home office in the evenings and also on weekends.
"The stress is caused, among other things, that every third person working from home often also sits in the home office in the evening and on weekends. Also, it seems unspoken that one is also available outside of regular office hours when working home.
In the home office, the boundary between jobs and private life is blurring quietly and quickly. Thereby you risk that the working hours´ necessary breaks and the subsequent recharging phases also diminish," Helmut Schröder points out.
"Our analysis shows that the employees who often work from home are clearly above their colleagues in the office spaces when it comes to the complaint barometer of fatigue and exhaustion, frustrations and anger, as well as nervousness and irritability."
Less sick leave
However, the higher stress level of the home office does not result in any higher sickness absence. Home office employees reported an average of 7.7 annual sick days, colleagues in the corporate office environment 11.9 days of absence. Homeworkers feel that they have an easier time catching up and offsetting the neglected time.
All in all, the German study notes, for the vast majority of office workers there are definite advantages to having the opportunity to work from home: Greater concentration, better efficiency and consistently higher job satisfaction. ●
Verywellmind.com: How to handle the stress of working from home
Facilitatemagazine.com: Working from home can impair your mental health
Theconversation.com: How remote working can increase stress and reduce well-being
Nbcnews.com: Here's how to stay productive and connected when you work from home