Ford paves the way as the first automaker to allow 86,000 employees to work from home permanently

Ford logo
Ford’s new policy will be introduced in July.

  • Ford has become the first auto company to announce employees can work from home in the long-term.
  • The company will explore flexible arrangements from July, depending on individual responsibilities.
  • A survey showed 95% of employees wanted a hybrid form of working and felt more productive at home.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Ford has become the first automobile company to shift towards remote working on a permanent basis, according to CNBC, with around 86,000 employees being allowed to work at least partially from home.

The policy is aimed at office workers rather than factory workers, who number around 100,000 and have largely returned to work.

Hybrid work plans and remote working will depend on individual and managerial responsibilities.

“The nature of the work we do really is going to be a guiding element,” chief people and employee experiences officer Kiersten Robinson told CNBC. “If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the last 12 months, it is that a lot of our assumptions around work and what employees need has shifted.”

Ford’s new policy will be introduced in July when most employees are expected to make at least a partial return to the office after more than a year.

“The nature of work drives whether or not you can adopt this model. There are certain jobs that are place-dependent – you need to be in the physical space to do the job,” chairman and chief executive of Ford Land, David Dubensky, told The Washington Post.

“Having the flexibility to choose how you work is pretty powerful,” Dubensky added. “It’s up to the employee to have dialogue and discussion with their people leader to determine what works best.”

Remote work coronavirus
95% of Ford employees wanted a hybrid form of working.

According to a survey conducted at Ford in June 2020, 95% of employees wanted a hybrid form of working and a number of them felt more productive at home.

The move from Ford comes after major companies including Google, Spotify, and Salesforce all announced that they were offering their employees the option to work from home permanently.

A survey conducted in January by the National Association for Business Economics suggested just one in 10 companies expected employees to return to the office after the pandemic.

“These companies are all looking at each other,” associate professor at Michigan State University’s School of Human Resources and Labor Relations, Angela Hall, told The Detroit News. “And especially someone like Ford, who is a large, respected employer – people are going to model that behavior.”

The Washington Post also reported that General Motors and Toyota were looking at flexible options for a return to the office, although they are both yet to announce new policies.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Working from Home (Again) – Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle

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Many of us are either working from home again, or never stopped since the first lockdown! It’s much harder to keep healthy when it’s cold and dark outside.

Here are some tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle while you’re working from home. Hopefully these will keep you motivated throughout the long winter months.

  1. Exercise While Working From Home
  2. Eat Healthily When Working From Home
  3. Money and Health Tips
  4. Stay Mentally Healthy While Working From Home
  5. Working From Home Routine

Exercise while working from home

Exercise when working at home to stay healthy

Gyms are shut and many forms of exercise are off the cards for now, but this doesn’t mean you need to stop exercising altogether.

Something as simple as getting out for a walk or run everyday will improve your mood and keep you healthy. The best thing about this is it’s outside, so you can get some fresh air and maybe even some sunshine at the same time. Cycling is also a good option if you prefer it.

There’s also no shortage of online workouts you can do from home. YouTube has a wide range of workout videos for free that will suit all abilities. Whether a 20 minute lunchtime HIIT session is your thing or a pre-bed yoga routine is more your style, you’ll have plenty of options to choose from.

Eat healthily when working from home

Endless takeaways seem like the easy option and the temptation to regularly order out is only growing.

If you can, keep takeaways to the minimum or cook your own healthy alternatives to your favourite classics.

Keeping to regular meals can also help. It’s very easy to mindlessly snack while working from home – hands up if you’ve polished off a whole packet of biscuits in a day before!

Sticking to regular, nutritious meals will help prevent this as you should feel full and satisfied for longer after eating.

Don’t forget to drink water too. It’s very easy to find yourself on your fourth of fifth coffee without realising it, but don’t forget coffee is actually dehydrating. Make sure to balance it out with regular glasses of water. This is also a good way to keep you moving as you have to get up every hour or so to fill up your glass.

Money and health tips

Working from home can help you save money and improve your financial health. For starters, you don’t have the cost of the commute or the allure of after work drinks!

But, there are expenses to working from home and the costs could rack up quickly if you don’t watch out.

Electricity will be a big cost for many, now we’re at home all the time. To keep your electricity costs down, turn your power switches off at the wall when you’re not using them. You could also consider switching providers. Some – like Bulb – offer a referral bonus if you can convince a friend to switch too.

Heating is another big expense, especially with the cold weather we’re currently experiencing. Try and wear extra socks and jumpers (if your work Zoom calls allow!) rather than heading to the thermostat as soon as you get a bit chilly.

Where possible try and avoid ordering lunch each day, however tempting it might be. Although cooking endless meals can get tiring, it will help you save a lot of money, so your bank balance will thank you in the long run.

If you’re finding you’re not spending as much money – whether it’s from not commuting or buying lunch each day – try and avoid leaving it sitting in your current account. This will just increase the temptation to spend it when the opportunity presents itself again.

Instead, consider opening a savings accounts. Out of site, out of mind really does work. Your money will be protected and ready for you to spend when you really need it.

Stay mentally healthy while working from home

Seek individual therapy online to help your mental health when working from home

Lockdown and Covid-19 are getting most people down. A certain amount of this is probably unavoidable, but there are steps you can take to stay mentally healthy at home.

A good starting point is to stay connected with your friends. Arrange Zoom calls and virtual catch ups so you can check in with each other. You could even play a game or watch a film together to make you feel more connected.

Take some time each day to relax and switch off. A lot of people find mindfulness helpful for this. You can find out more about mindfulness here.

If you find yourself struggling more than usual, it could be worth seeking individual therapy. Talking through your problems and getting specific help and guidance can be very helpful.

Of course, if your feelings are seriously worrying you do speak to your GP or a medical professional.

Set a routine

A routine is crucial to staying healthy while working from home.

It may seem tempting – particularly without the commute hanging over you – to keep snoozing your alarm, but try and avoid this.

Instead, get up each morning and follow the same pattern. Whether it’s having a coffee, a shower, or cooking yourself a nice breakfast, the important thing is to stick to a routine and avoid lying in bed with your laptop all morning.

It’s also really important to take breaks and get away from endless screens regularly. A quick stand up and stretch every hour, will help avoid aches and pains while giving your mind a much-needed break.

Where you can, take a proper break in the day and get some fresh air. Getting out in daylight will make a big difference if your working hours allow it. Schedule this into your day to stop yourself from putting it off because it’s a bit too cold or raining.

If you’re struggling with productivity, or social media scrolling is distracting you too much, try scheduling in fun activities as rewards. This could be anything from a break to watch an episode of your favourite TV show after you’ve met a deadline or even a bubble bath.

It’s a good idea to mark the end of the working day too. Try to avoid checking your emails well into the evening and working anti-social hours. Instead, shut your laptop down and put it away until the morning once you’ve finished for the day.

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The post Working from Home (Again) – Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle appeared first on MoneyMagpie.