Working from home can hurt your business

The Australian, July 2020

Premise

  • Many people from Sydney / Melbourne are considering buying houses in regional Australia: cheaper, better quality of life, easy to work remotely.

  • This also poses a threat to the values of residential and commercial property in major capital cities.

The issue

  • If people are away from the office more than 2 days a week, this damages the long-term dynamic of the enterprise.

  • I.e. those who moved to rural Australia will have to commute to the office 3 days a week.

  • The most important things during the analysis: the patterns of employees’ communications and how people spend their time.

  • The strongest driver of how people collaborate is the office environment.

  • People working remotely copy the patterns they developed while in the office.

  • Replicating face-to-face communications completely is not possible.

  • People spend 45% of their communication time with their top 5 collaborators, can be done from any location.

  • Contacts outside the top 5 fall dramatically in a working-from-home environment.

  • Damage to the dynamic of the enterprise and affects the training experience of young team members.

  • Can be managed short term, but long-term people need to be back in the office, even if for 3 days a week.