Is flexible working with us forever?
24th May 2022 by Linda Bright
Working from home became the ‘norm’ for many during the Covid pandemic, but now it’s getting a mixed reception.
One London law firm recently said its staff could work from home permanently if they liked – but would have to take a 20% pay cut; and cabinet office minister Jacob Rees-Mogg sparked controversy when he left notes on empty desks saying he looked forward to seeing them “soon”.
At Active PR we had adopted remote working long before the pandemic and have always found our staff to be more productive, not less, once they don’t have to worry about a long commute, can manage school runs more easily and achieve a better work/life balance.
We supplement video meetings with regular ‘in-person’ get-togethers and hire meeting rooms when needed for training purposes or collaborative working; but the rest of the time we trust our staff to manage their workload and work space accordingly.
We encourage them to create an efficient but comfortable area in which to work, to take regular comfort breaks and to use all the available tools to interact with clients, colleagues and contacts as much as possible during the working day.
Performance is judged on output, quality of work and client satisfaction; we don’t physically have to see them sat at a desk for that.
It’s definitely worked for Active PR – we’d call it a win-win situation. Our staff have saved on commuting costs and travel stress, while the business has reduced its outlay on city centre rents and rates. We’re fully focused on our clients and their needs and are just as accessible as we’ve ever been, if not more so.
While working from home will never be possible or practical for everyone – some professions will always have to show up at their place of work – we do think it deserves a permanent place in the world of PR for those who want it.