It’s now been a full year since we began our pandemic-enforced working from home experience. We left the office with a rather optimistic note that “this might last several weeks or more, so remember to take all your gear home with you!”. But apart from a couple of weeks before the UK’s second wave in October, we’ve been at home ever since.
The year has actually worked out well for us on several levels, and it has certainly demonstrated that many of the fears we had about working from home, about incorporating more flexibility in our working practices, were unfounded.
We’ve been thinking a lot recently (as has the rest of the world) about the ‘new normal’ and what work will look like after the pandemic. While our plans for the physical office space are still in development, we have already made some concrete changes to the way we will work based on the experiences of the last year – our new Working and Wellness Policy.
After some consulting, one of the things we really wanted to do was to provide our people with the flexibility to find a work–life balance that ‘works’ for them.
So, central to our new policy are three freedoms: work anywhere, live anywhere, and fit work around life.
Now there are obviously some caveats. Everyone will continue to consider the needs of their colleagues and their clients when choosing working patterns, so that we can continue to deliver great work. And we’re still expecting people to work hard. By work anywhere we mean anywhere with a decent internet connection and in a practical time zone. Live anywhere means within a travelable (but maybe not commutable) distance of one of our offices. But in terms of working from home or the office, and when during the day to do their hours, we’re allowing people to define their own mix.
As the world gradually resurfaces from the restrictions of the pandemic, we hope this reset in our working rules of engagement will allow our people the flexibility and freedom to achieve a work–life balance that works for them.
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