14 Jun 2021
The world of office work has been shaken up by the pandemic and lockdowns. During the lockdowns, people who used to commute to London from Hertford and St Albans suddenly found they had more time and energy, simply because they didn’t have to catch a train every day. And as things gradually return to some kind of normality, those people are now keen to continue working remotely, either at home or in a local serviced office, in order to make the most of this extra time.
At the same time, many companies have realised that it is possible to conduct business efficiently and productively on a remote basis. Large companies are giving up expensive premises in London in favour of remote or hybrid working, so like it or not, their staff will have to find alternative arrangements.
Remote workers who choose to work from home full-time will no longer have to leave home at the crack of dawn to avoid rush hour traffic or be assured of a parking space. Rail commuters won’t have to get to the station on time to catch the right train or search for an elusive seat once they get on it. However, working from home is not always the best option, for a number of reasons.
Work-life balance – when you’re working from home, it’s all too easy to blur the boundaries between your work life and your home life. You’re more likely to interrupt your evening’s relaxation to check your emails or sort something out because it’s been on your mind and it’s so easy to log on to your computer… Then, all of a sudden, a five-minute job becomes a ten-minute job, and before you know it, your evening’s gone.
Space – if you don’t have a spare room to work in, your work computer and papers will always be visible, giving you the feeling that you’re never off duty. This will have negative effects on your work–life balance.
Solitude – sometimes you need to lock yourself away so you can get your head down and concentrate on a task, but most of the time, having people around you is more motivating. The buzz of being in a professional working environment inspires you to work harder yourself, and it’s always nice to have someone to chat to when you need a break. Working alone at home can sometimes be a bit of a struggle as a result.
Interruptions – when you’re working from home, it’s easy to get diverted by non-work-related tasks. Or there can be distractions and interruptions from family, friends and neighbours who make the assumption that just because you’re at home, you’re available.
If you live in or near St Albans or Hertford, there’s a local solution for remote working that will give you all the advantages of not having to commute to London with none of the disadvantages of working from home – renting space in our UOE Hubs. Hopefully you’ll live close enough to walk or cycle into the office, giving you the opportunity to avoid the traffic as well as getting some fresh air and exercise – our St Albans Hub even has bike racks you can use.
By renting a desk or an office at a UOE Hub, you can have all the advantages of working locally without the disadvantages of working from home.
You’ll have the flexibility of working when you want (our Hubs are open 24/7), and you can dress as casually or professionally as you would at home (though PJs are discouraged!). Utilities are included in the monthly rent, so you don’t have to worry about what working from home is going to do to your heating bill, and you can help yourself to as much tea or coffee as you want.
A huge advantage of working in the Hub is that you’ll have other people working around you. The professional atmosphere will motivate you, and there’s always someone to talk to or ask for advice, or even do business with. We find that there’s a sense of community among people who regularly work at the UOE Hubs, making them relaxed and friendly places to work in. And at the end of your working day, you can leave work in the workplace, well away from your home life.