41% of workers claim that they are missing office banter and spending time with their work friends (40%) as remote working has quickly become the new norm.
The research, which was conducted by Vodafone, found that having company around you (35%), sticking to a routine (32%), bouncing ideas off one another (30%) and the motivational office buzz (22%) were also things that employees said they were missing due to working from home.
Almost one-fifth (19%) said that they miss engaging in grown-up conversations with colleagues, possibly because a large portion of employees are juggling home-schooling and professional commitments simultaneously.
The top ten things Brits miss about being in the office
Work banter (41%)
Having company around me (35%)
Bouncing ideas off each other (30%)
The office buzz to motivate me (22%)
Collaborating with others (21%)
Learning from others & grown up conversation (17%)
The commute (nine per cent)
Watercooler gossip (eight per cent)
While employees may be missing the office, the research did unearth some positives to this period of remote working.
51% of Brits said that working from home has allowed them to claw back extra time due to the lack of commute.
One-third (37%) of employees said they can lie in and 20% said that they are able to spend more time with pets.
The findings also revealed that 29% of Brits are reaping the financial benefits of working from home as they aren’t currently splurging on coffee, buying lunch out or doing a bit of retail therapy over lunchtime.
While employees aren’t in a physical office environment with colleagues, the research found that they are doing their best to stay in touch virtually.
According to the research, one-third (33%) of survey respondents said that they found Slack and Skype the most useful applications to communicate virtually with others.
Video conference calling (29%), audio conference calling (22%) and streaming services (20%) were among other tech platforms that respondents favoured as they grapple to adapt to the new way of working.
Scott Petty, Vodafone UK Chief Technology Officer, explained: “Small things like avoiding scheduling conference calls on the hour or half past the hour will make a huge difference in helping us continue to work smoothly and productively from home.
“Together we can get through these uncertain times and keep the UK running,” he added.
Some employees may find it challenging working from home for long periods of time which is why it is crucial for employers to implement initiatives to keep engagement and morale levels up.
Employee engagement at Missguided
Glenn Grayson, who heads up Engagement, Communication and Learning Experiences at Missguided, told HR Grapevine that the firm has just embarked on an “extended WFH journey” and are quickly implementing tools and channels to keep staff engaged and up-to-date with the latest information.
“As well as ensuring that everyone has the vital information they need, we’re also making simple tweaks to our engagement initiatives to keep them alive, including new eCards and making the office experience our colleagues know and love virtual”.
Earlier this week, Grayson explained that the online retailer was launching its ‘Health & Happiness” series. “During these challenging times our physical and mental wellbeing is something we need to focus on, even more, so with this series, we’ll be bringing twice-weekly sessions to our colleagues on various topics including nutrition, mindfulness and exercise,” Grayson added.
New ways of staying connected
Earlier this week, HR Grapevine shared the strategy that was created by the employee engagement team at the LEGO Group.
In a LinkedIn post, the firm revealed that the engagement team has daily afternoon coffee talks where staff are encouraged to wear a new facial or head accessory each time to make it more fun.
Do you have any tips for maintaining a high level of employee engagement throughout this challenging period? Let us know in the comments below…