How to ask a new employer for homeworking

Work from homeTips on making a business case for working from home

A recent survey highlighted that 7.5 million British employees would rather work from home one day a week than get a pay rise. For employees over 45, they felt that homeworking increased their productivity and made them feel less stressed and more in control of their workload.

If you secure a full-time role and want to make a homeworking request, then here are some tips to help you make an attractive business case.

Work hard to make it work

If you’re not being productive when working from home, then it will show, so don’t be nervous about making the request. However, It’s important that you think about how you plan to remain ‘visible’ to colleagues in the office on your homeworking days. After all, you're still doing the same job just in a different location.

Building your case

Really think through how you see homeworking fitting with your role, and also think about whether your personality actually suits this way of working. Some people can find it distracting and miss the ‘buzz’ of the office. If you feel that way, then maybe consider other flexible options more suited to your personality.

Here are some other points to consider when building your case:

How will your job work out of the office?

Take a look at the job description and ask yourself if any elements of the role can actually be done remotely. Some jobs are harder than others, so it may not be possible. Are there any elements of your role that mean you don’t need to be in the office? If you require periods of concentration, such as writing or analysis, then you may be less distracted away from the office. Other tasks that can be done from home include:

  • Financial planning
  • Appraisals preparation
  • Conference calls
  • Strategic planning
  • Training/coaching calls

Think about the technology

Think about any technology requirements you may have. Will you need a company mobile or laptop to stay in contact? If the role involves dealing with people or having to attend meetings, then consider solutions such as Skype or Messenger to chat to colleagues.

Will homeworking have an impact on colleagues?

Will you miss any important meetings on your homeworking days? If so, what can be done to address this? If you have line management responsibilities, then think about how you see this working remotely. It’s important to make sure you’re still pulling your weight and contactable, work doesn’t stop when you’re working offsite.

Be prepared to negotiate

Think about what you want and what you’ll be happy to accept, always be mindful that you may have to compromise. If your employer is hesitant about any of your proposal, then you can always suggest a trial period.

As with anything that breaks with the ‘norm’ of the traditional 9-to-5, you’ll be giving your new employer food for thought. With that in mind, presenting a solid case, as opposed to simply asking the question, will help reassure your employer and clarify exactly what you need.


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