It seems as though many of us that have been remote working will continue to do so. I see some offices opening, but not many. I had one friend that had everyone go back to their office in Denver, but they tend to all close their office doors so they don't have to wear masks and they do their meetings over Zoom. Seems crazy to go into the office for that.
The weight of this type of work continuing for the next six or more months has been a little tough for me at times. That sounds crazy, for someone that's been a remote worker for over a decade, but I used to regularly go to offices, visit people, or even go work in Starbucks. Those types of things aren't happening for me now. I am going to try and see if I can get a few more lunches with friends, especially when the weather changes a bit.
If we are going to continue to work from home, some things likely need to change for some of us. On a call recently a friend asked about my Secret Lab chair, since this individual had an old chair and knew their organization wasn't bringing them back until sometime in Q1 2021 at the earliest. They needed to get better set up at home to work.
I saw an article that some companies are thinking about this new setup, how they might save money on office space and infrastructure, but also perhaps invest some of this in employees. There are companies that pay for phones, broadband, and some necessities, but some are thinking about doing more.
They may not only invest in computer equipment, but might do a stipend to allow employees to better set up their home office, which may just be their new office. Perhaps some allowance for furniture or other equipment. I know some are considering monthly allowances for the additional expenses employees have, such as more electricity for equipment or heating/cooling. I know Redgate has offered some of this to our staff.
Ultimately, we need to ensure we have an ergonomic, long term place to work, which is challenging for some. I continue to see people working from dining tables, sofas, and more, which are fine for some ad hoc typing, but not good for sustained periods of concentration. If your company isn't planning on going back to an office, perhaps you want to ask about some benefits. At least a chair, as I think having a nice chair has made a big difference to my comfort across the last six months.
I do think it's important to get a good ergonomic setup if you are going to be here for a long time. Especially if there are others in your house and you all need to be sure you can work effectively and concentrate on what your employer expects you to do.