The pros and cons of working in an office rage once more as many companies ask their employees to return. But while the prospect of social interaction and a change of scenery is a big plus for many, the thought of a commute fills employees with dread, causing stress and financial strain.
So, how can companies try and address the commute, and how can employees minimize the negative impact? In this blog, we’ll look at some of the most effective ways to reduce daily commutes and make the return to work much more manageable.
Search for Office Space Outside of the Central Business Districts
The increase in corporations decentralizing, favoring smaller satellite offices that are closer to employees’ homes and neighborhoods, is fueling a rise in the availability of high-quality workspace outside of the traditional CBDs. These properties also offer more flexible and collaborative spaces, from open desks to private offices and shared amenities such as conference rooms and kitchens.
This is creating a real opportunity for both employees and employers. The employer is significantly reducing costs but also helping to sell ‘going back to the office’ with their employees, with shorter commutes, lower commuting costs and high-quality flexible collaborative workspaces.
Flexible Scheduling and Planning
In addition to flexible workspaces, flexible scheduling is becoming more acceptable and offered by many companies, with options such as compressed workweeks, staggered start and end times, and adjusted lunch breaks. These can help employees avoid rush hour traffic and public transportation crowding. Equally drivers can make a difference by simply better planning on the commute they have. By understanding traffic flows, identifying the best routes to and from the office and planning alternative routes, drivers can decrease the time spent in traffic and dramatically reduce stress.
One of the simplest and most effective ways to cut a commute time is to carpool with other colleagues. Not only does it save money on fuel, parking expenses and car depreciation, but it can reduce the stress of always having to be the one driving in traffic! Carpooling with colleagues can also provide a sense of community and support. Lastly, ride sharing reduces the environmental impact of commuting, and many cities offer incentives and benefits to carpooling such as priority lanes and reduced tolls.
Working in an office provides a clear distinction between work and home life, helping bringing back a true work-life balance, with a dedicated workspace and a structured work routine. But the commute can be a negative for many. Companies can combat these by implementing various strategies such as flexible scheduling, commuting incentives, and alternative transportation solutions. It can also be a personal approach, with better planning and asking colleagues about carsharing. But no matter who initiates the change reducing the commute time and making the most of the workday, can improve employee satisfaction and productivity, it lower costs, and reduces the carbon footprint.