Suffolk work-from-home staff 'missing interaction with colleagues'

Group of businessmen and businesswomen smart working from home. View from side of woman talking to h

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Working from home has caused many people to become “frustrated” with their work situation - with many having very few face-to-face interactions with colleagues since the pandemic started.

According to national research published by the leading Bury St Edmunds-based brewer Greene King, nearly two-thirds (65%) of 18 to 24-year-olds, referred to as Gen Z, have only met their work colleagues in person once since starting working in the pandemic. 

The virus has forced many people into working from home.

This is either due to them not feeling safe to go into the office, or companies choosing to have staff work remotely. Unfortunately, this leads to many workers not having social contact with their colleagues.

Despite the inevitable uncertainties of returning to the office, 85% of British office workers say they would rather work in an office at the moment to spend more time with their colleagues.  

More than 50% believe it is important to socialise and bond with work colleagues at a local pub or restaurant, but due to the pandemic and work-from-home guidelines, they haven’t had the chance to do so yet. 

Paul Mitchell, careers adviser at Futures For You in Suffolk and Norfolk, said: “I’m currently working from home and since March 2020, I have had three face-to-face team meetings with my colleagues in total.

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“I do miss the face-to-face contact. It was August last year when we had our first face-to-face team meeting. I didn’t realise how much I actually missed my colleagues until you start talking to them and seeing them again and I realised just how good I felt talking to them.

Paul Mitchell standing outside

Careers Adviser Paul Mitchell has been missing face-to-face interaction with colleagues - Credit: Paul Mitchell

“There is a difference between talking to somebody in front of you compared to talking to someone on the telephone. You can’t read a person's body language on the phone. There are limitations to how well you can connect to somebody over the telephone.

“As an individual, I feel frustrated working from home and not having that social contact with customers and colleagues alike.”