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Going back to offices from WFH

Work from Home, a concept that wasn’t new to us before the pandemic began. I being a working professional myself witnessed certain sections of the employees opting to work from home 3 times a week. It varied from project to project and the client. But, with the onset of the deadly coronavirus pandemic, this unusual concept became a mandate for all of us and we were asked to work from home. Ever since the pandemic began in the earlier months of 2020, several offices across the country were closed during the lockdown, trying to find its way to enable the employees to work from home (WFH). They made several arrangements to get our office computers, desktops couriered at home and help us resume work while at home and this has become a key component in the new normal of our lifestyle.Since then several months have passed and we shifted our office into our homes made a little workspace in the place where we are comfortable working from and imbibed the idea of joining the office from the convenience of their homes.

Several startups and mid-sized companies sold their workplaces to cut down on their rental expenses. Now as restrictions are being lifted in the country, local trains have resumed and now many workplaces and employers are requesting their employees to come back to the office. This would make several of us happy but the major the chunk of the employees are still struggling to accept the fact that they have to start their lives again by waking up 2-3 hours early, making necessary arrangements, get ready, and travel for an hour or so to reach their workplaces.
But before all this hustle comes to another major responsibility. Finding a new apartment to live in. Many employees were staying in rented apartments before the pandemic away from their hometown. After work from home became a mandatory working pattern, people started vacating their houses, paying additional rent to their landlords, and moving back to their hometown where they can work and save the money they spend on monthly rents. If offices start resuming, the struggle of finding a home nearer to the workplace will begin. While these are the pain for the people who have happily adapted to this current pattern of working from home, many others are craving to resume work and have a much productive work life. Now, in this article, I will give you certain instances that people have shared with The Times of India the newspaper was working from home has been nothing but a big headache.

One of the employees who is an analyst in a well known MNC says "When you are at home, you are your own IT guy, everything." Disha Khatri, an analyst working in Gurgaon shares her pain of managing the fluctuating internet bandwidth, technical issues arising in her computer, and others and says, "With everyone at home on call for work or school, the internet started acting crazy. And if anything goes wrong, you end up having to fix it yourself. In-office, you can depend on the IT guy but at home, it was annoying to be in charge of stuff like tech issues while trying to work. It doesn't let you have enough time and energy for your actual work. That's why as soon as the company asked who wanted to return to the office, I put my hand up.
Another employee who is struggling in managing both her family and work at the same time says "If I go to office, my family takes me the more seriously". An associate banker named Ananya Kumar from Punjabi, says, "Initially when WFH began, I thought it was a blessing- getting paid to work while staying at home. But it wasn't. Even though you are on your laptop all day, your family doesn't understand. I got so tired of the constant interruptions. All your family sees is that you are sitting in front of a laptop. Now that I go to the office, they seem to take it more seriously and believe me when I say I'm busy."

A management executive complaining about lack of productivity while working from home says that, 'Impossible to focus on work at home'. A management executive Mayur Vihar says the reason why he went back to the office in September, "When you have your spouse working 10 feet away from you doing their calls our kids in the next room, it is impossible to focus. A house is not designed for that. There are so many distractions. I found myself constantly procrastinating. So, when the option presented itself, I decided to go to office. It's s been two months and I have been far more productive now. It helps that there are fewer people in office now, so social distancing isn’t an issue." So from this, we can say that going back to the office from the WFH pattern might be a boon for many but a major lifestyle change for others too. Offices must formulate a way to keep their employees happy and get much more products than they ever expected. The pandemic is not yet over. Resuming offices will give the employers an additional responsibility of taking care of their employee's safety and hygiene, sanitization norms and new rules need to be formulated, the healthcare expenses need to be taken care of and many other things. It's just a matter of time when things will take a turn in our professional lives. Until then all we need to do is be safe, healthy, and happy.

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