Today marks the end of my third week working remotely as a front-end web developer. While there hasn’t been nearly enough time for me to know all of the pros and cons of remote working yet, I can surely share what it’s been like so far.
I live on the outskirts of a suburban area in the city of Pretoria, South Africa. It is a fairly populous area, but people living here only have a handful of options available to them when they have to commute. This usually causes fairly large traffic jams at peak times.
I used to work as a visual designer at a digital marketing agency about 28 km away from where I live, but because of the above mentioned traffic, I usually spent between an hour and an hour and a half getting to and from work. That averaged at about 12 hours a week of sitting in traffic.
Now that I work remotely, I have 12 more hours free every week to spend as I see fit. That makes a big difference.
What about productivity?
I’ll admit, this was one of my big concerns at first, but I’m glad to say that I don’t see any detrimental effects to my productivity. In fact, I’m willing to say that I am even more productive now than ever before because I am a lot happier working from home.
So what are the cons of remote working?
The biggest con of working remotely I’ve experienced thus far is that I seem to be getting a very light form of “cabin fever”. But then again, maybe that isn’t the right term to use … I like to be around people, so spending all of my time working from home alone isn’t ideal.
I have on occasion gone to a nearby coffee shop to sit and work there for a while and it was quite nice, the aroma of freshly brewed coffee and the noise of the nearby conversations surely helped.
I’ve also identified a few places nearby that cater towards people needing a place to meet for work, fitted with Wi-Fi and a boardroom. I will try them out and maybe do a small post about them for anyone in the vicinity in the future.
Conclusion / TL;DR
Working remotely has a lot of benefits and I would recommend more companies to try out a remote working culture. The only downside I’ve experienced is a bit of loneliness working from home alone.