My employer has decided to initiate a work from home program starting in October of this year. I am very excited as this is something I have wanted for years. Back in 1998 when I started working as a consultant developing web sites I had thought for sure I would be working from home most of the time. The reality was that none of my clients liked the idea. They were still under the impression that people were more productive when they were being watched. So finally I will get my opportunity.
My employer is in the process of revitalising it’s core business (pharmaceuticals) and has hired so many scientists that IT folks were asked to leave the campus to make space. Of course, our budget was also cut and like all of IT these days we are asked to do more with less. Back in 2004 our CIO made the decision to outsource the corporate network and some SAP application development as a cost saving measure. It’s now been two years and the business (which is finally making a turnaround) is asking again, “What have you done for me lately?”. Our CIO is under pressure to reduce cost and consolidate into a building that can not hold all her staff. Reducing staff would hurt morale so she has opted for a compromise.
I am not sure what the arrangements would be in October. Unsubstantiated rumours abound but I expect that we will have a three days from home, two in the office schedule. Come in on Monday, talk with your manager about the weeks priorities and hold in person meetings; come in on Friday to recap.
I also expect that we will all be issued company laptops. My employer is becoming more and more Windows centric each day. The only computer in the house that is mine exclusively is a mac mini. Of course none of the corporate desktop apps (Oracle calendar, Internet Explorer, McAfee Anti-virus, Office 2003, etc.) exist on my mac mini. If the company is willing to purchase those things….But I expect it would be cheaper to issue a corporate laptop. I have the Cisco VPN client for OS X and so far it has worked well.
So until October I am spending my time searching the web for cool home office setups like the one in the photos.