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Managing Remote Workers’ Home Fever

February 26, 2024 from Canadian HRReporter


Since the COVID-19 epidemic, working remotely has become the standard for a vast number of employees across the globe. This shift has resulted in many advantages, such as more freedom and flexibility, but it has also given rise to a lesser-known condition known as “home fever.” When working from home for extended periods of time, remote workers may become less motivated and feel less well-rounded, which may eventually affect their output and engagement levels.


This problem is clarified by recent research from the School of Engineering and Design at Carleton University, which emphasizes how critical it is for HR directors to treat home fever as a real worry. Home fever is characterized by symptoms such as anxiety, irritation, restlessness, and loneliness, along with a strong desire to leave work and seek refuge outside. It has been compared to cabin fever but in the context of an employment setting.


PhD candidate and research co-author Farzam Sepanta highlights how important it is for HR practitioners to identify the slow beginning of home fever and how employee-led actions might avoid it. Instead of providing one-size-fits-all solutions, the secret is to provide remote workers the freedom to customize plans according to their unique requirements and situation.


Sepanta emphasizes the need of taking personal responsibility in the fight against home sickness, pointing out that remote workers are in the best position to determine the routines and habits that are beneficial to their health and efficiency. When given the opportunity to take proactive measures to solve issues, remote employees, such as creating a morning routine or adding regular breaks and physical activities like yoga or walking, show that they are willing to do so.


On the other hand, HR plays a critical role in creating an atmosphere that supports worker productivity and well-being. It’s critical to acknowledge the various needs of remote workers in light of their living situations, individual situations, and corporate cultures. Whether an employee works from home or in an office, employers can still help them by installing applications or tracking software to encourage healthy screen habits and movement breaks.


Sepanta highlights that HR policies should be designed to increase workers’ already high levels of productivity and conscientiousness in order to support the expansion of the business as a whole. HR strategies that are in line with workers’ happiness and well-being help companies foster a culture of trust, flexibility, and support—all of which are necessary for success in the increasingly distant workplace.




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