UK office workers “much less productive” working from home

Research of 1000 office employees by Ricoh, of which 61% work from home, suggests that 75% of employees feel less productive when working from home with nearly half of those who do work from home suggesting they do not have the right technology to work effectively out of the office.

This startling finding, which immediately begs lots of questions not least “what’s Ricoh’s angle?” and “how was the research done?”, is an astonishing claim as it is widely accepted, especially in the management consultancy market, that home working is A Good Thing.

Employers like it because it mean they are using the employees space pretty much for free rather than having to pay for it while employees like it because it means that they can achieve a slightly better work life balance while (and here’s the rub) still doing productive, meaningful work. In fact there is an argument to suggest that without the obvious distractions of the office environment that employees can be more effective, unless of course there is simply a different set of distractions, or productivity is limited by the technology challenges mentioned earlier.

Ricoh MD Phil Keoghan said “it is largely about making simple policy changes to allow people easy access to company networks, providing people with laptops and tablets, and training them in how to use them”

Perhaps many consultants do indeed have these tools and skills but it’s interesting to consider that many may not!

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