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“Headphones for noisy neighbours and a comfy chair”

The secrets to starting a new job from the comfort of your home

Starting a new job can be an anxious time. There are new names to remember, new systems to learn and of course the repeated “who am I?” to all your new colleagues.

But do not worry because that is normal!

Now that a national lockdown has graced us yet again, it has resulted in many new employees starting their first day from home. There of course are some benefits of working remotely and not having to commute into the office; anyone who has been a victim of no personal space on the London tube will tell you this. On the other hand, the first day can also be an exciting experience.

So, are new employees having a happy and successful onboarding process? Do they feel that they are part of the wider team?

Stats have shown that working remotely has increased productivity but are you getting the most out of the experience?

I caught up with Lise Flornes who has recently started a role at Facebook, where she went through the experience of starting her new job from the comfort of her own home. She talks to us about that experience and how to make the most of the opportunity!

Q1. Starting a new job can be an anxious time, and you started your role at Facebook working remotely and are yet to go into the office. How did you find that experience?

It is definitely a unique situation and before starting in the role I must admit that I was a bit nervous. However, the virtual onboarding process has been incredibly well organised, and my managers and work colleagues have been very supportive and understanding. The whole remote working environment is a new experience for most people, and it’s almost a bit of a weird bonding experience! 

 

Q2. What advice would you give people who are starting their new role in a similar situation to you?

I think it’s important to recognise that these are difficult times, and to be patient and not put too much pressure on yourself. Lean on the team and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

 

Q3. What was the biggest challenge you found working remotely?

I think the social aspect of starting a new job in the current environment can be a bit of a challenge. In the beginning I really missed random things such as bumping into people by the coffee machine and having casual chats with your teammates. I quickly learned the importance of being proactive and making an effort to put in individual time with my new colleagues and really get to know the team as much as you can.

 

Q4. What 3 tips would you give someone to be proactive when working from home?

1.      I find it helpful to set a schedule (include breaks!) and identify what needs to get done every day and make sure to do it. 

2.      Pretend you are in the office. I get dressed in the morning, eat my lunch out/make some good food at home, and catch up with my manager on a regular basis. 

3.      Having an optimal home working environment has been very important to me. Noise cancelling headphones (especially if you have noisy neighbours like me haha) and a comfortable work chair has been essential! 

 

Q5. Stats have shown that working remotely increase productivity. What benefits have you found while working remotely?

Even though I am keen to get back to an actual office, I must admit that I quite enjoy working from home. I generally feel more productive and less stressed, and I definitely do not miss the long commute! I also find it a lot easier to maintain a healthy lifestyle, seen as I make more homemade food and have time to exercise. 

 

We have received great feedback from Facebook about Lise, where she has taken the challenges in her stride and managed to show with a bit of structure and effort, that you can capitalise on the benefits of working remotely.

It is now on employers more than ever to have an engaging onboarding process for new employees, which will reassure new joiners that they are a vital part of the business and feel connected to the wider team.

If you are about to start a new role in a similar position to Lise, we hope we have provided you some useful insights. Let us know your thoughts!

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