Survey finds that one-quarter of workers spend less than one hour on office work
Nearly one-third of employees work from home on occasion, but some of them do very little work, according to a recent survey.
Employers and employees are taking advantage of improvements in workplace technology, which allows workers the freedom to work from virtually anywhere, including their homes, said Rosemary Haefner, vice-president of human resources at CareerBuilder.com. While working from home may improve work/life balance, it can also create a challenge to stay motivated.
The CareerBuilder.com survey, Out of the Office 2005, found nearly one-third of workers say they work from home on occasion. But 25 per cent admit they spend less than one hour on their office work when working from home. More than half spend less than three hours and only 14 per cent put in a full eight hours.
There are many factors contributing to the work-from-home productivity gap. Twenty-two per cent of those surveyed say their children grab most of their attention while working from home.
Personal calls, surfing the Internet, watching television, running errands, doing housework or sleeping are other distractions that respondents reported kept them from working.
Haefner recommends the following tips to make working from home productive:
Keep to the same schedule
Start your day as if you were going into the office. Get up at the same time, change out of your pyjamas, and stick to your normal morning routine. Lounging around in bed will open the door to procrastination.
Location, location, location
Don’t tempt yourself by working in front of the TV or near the radio or in front of the refrigerator. Pick a location that is quiet and structured, where you can complete your projects.
Plan out your day
Create a list of specific goals for the day and cross them off as you complete them. This will assure that what you wanted to accomplish actually gets done.
Give yourself a lunch hour
Designate a certain time for personal calls, errands, housework, exercise and any other non-office related activities. Consider setting a timer to let you know when it is time to return to your work.
Take a break
Taking some time to play with your children, eat a snack or walk the dog will not sink the ship. Just keep the breaks to a minimum.
December 19, 2005