How Our Team Worked From Home At MacFinder

The Work From Home period was a new phenomenon that many of us had to adjust to during the strange and unprecedented situation that was known as “lockdown”. Whether you loved it or hated it, working from home had both its benefits and drawbacks to the work-life balance. For many of us, it freed up extra time to spend with our families (good thing or bad thing, you decide), while others used this extra time to enjoy or perfect their hobbies.

While many of us have now returned to the office, we thought it would be a good idea to reminisce about these rather strange times. Here’s what an average day looked like for some of our team at MacFinder, as we powered through lockdown, one Zoom meeting at a time.

What is/was your favourite part about working from home?

The “work from home” period was a largely positive experience for many members of the team here at MacFinder. Without the usual morning and evening commute, it allowed us to spend more time with our families that we would usually spend in the car, on the way to work. Many of us have younger children and with nurseries and schools being closed, it allowed us to look after them and spend time with them while we worked which was, for many of us, a bonus.

For those of us without children, working from home still had its benefits. For anyone that has worked in an office environment before can understand how a quick question at someone’s desk can often turn into a lengthy conversation rather quickly. This was no longer a problem when working from home became a reality. For many of us, it allowed us to focus on our daily tasks with little to no interruptions, helping us stay productive!

In the comfort of our own home, the kitchen is never too far away. Therefore, when lunchtime rolls around, what we decided to have for lunch was purely down to how inventive we were feeling (and what we had lying around in the fridge). While we do have access to the kitchen at the office, it’s not quite the same, so being able to rustle up pretty much whatever we fancied for lunch was certainly a benefit of working from home.

What went into building your workspace? Whereabouts at home did you work?

Choosing which room in your house that you do the majority of your work is paramount to staying focused and avoiding distractions. While some of us were lucky enough to already have a full desk set up ready to go, others had to move some things around to set up a comfortable workspace.

We found that the dining room was a popular room for most of us to get work done. Whether that was using the dining table or in fact bringing the garden table inside to act as a desk, we all managed to work it out in the end.

 

How did you adjust/stay productive while working at home?

When you first hear the term “work from home” you may feel that productivity and focus may just go out the window. While a number of us at first felt that our productivity levels may take a hit while working at home, we soon realised that was simply not the case and in some cases, productivity was even increased.

Many of us found setting up a workspace in a separate room was the key to staying productive, away from as many distractions as possible. Maintaining the same or similar routine to office life was also a common method to help stay productive. Being able to complete tasks early often meant that we were able to plan ahead for the following day, allowing us to stay on top of everything.

Working from home also enabled those that only work three day weeks to spread their tasks out over the five-day working week. With more free time to spend with our families, we found that this only enhanced productivity and improved the work/life balance.

Are there any desk essentials that you can’t work without?

At MacFinder, we’re lucky enough to be able to complete most of our daily tasks with just a few essentials; a computer, a monitor and a phone. As we are working from home, access to an unlimited amount of tea or coffee was an essential for many. Oh, and having snacks on hand 24/7 is always a good thing.

Do you listen to music or watch shows while you work?

While some of us preferred a quiet environment when working, in order to focus, others found that listening to music or the radio allowed them to work better. We tend to have the radio on in the background when working in the office and some of us found that this helped when working from home too.

 

For those of us with small children at home, peace and quiet was often hard to come by. Whether that was kids YouTube or TV, there was always something going on in the background – often joining in unintentionally with some of the nursery rhymes.

What will you miss the most about working from home?

While most of us have now returned back to the office, there is no doubt some things that we will miss about working from home. One thing that we will all certainly miss is the ability to wear whatever we like, spending all day working in your pyjamas is, unfortunately, a thing of the past.

Whether it was having your own kitchen nearby, fewer distractions or sitting down with the family for lunch, some aspects of this rather strange time will surely be missed.