As mentioned in the previous article ‟ What Kind of Jobs Can We Work with Telework or Zaitaku in Japan ? ”, the number of companies that introduced “Telework” or “Zaitaku-kinmu” increased rapidly due to the coronavirus.
Since the state of emergency was lifted, we could observe how some employees were heading to their offices again. However, at the time this article was written(June 2020), the number of people on the streets was not the same as before.
Therefore in this article, dedicated to people who continue working at home, we would like to explain some advice to work more comfortably from home or telework.
Status of Zaitaku-kinmu and Telework in Japan after lifted the state of emergency
Since the state of emergency in Japan was lifted (2020 May 25), the number of workers returning to their offices has been increasing, but actuality, how many people still working from home?
According to the results of the research carried out on by Persol Institute from May 29th to June 2nd, the rate of implementation of telework after the state of emergency (2020/04/10th to 12th) was 27.9% and when the state of emergency was lifted, 25.7% of Japanese companies continued working from home.
Of course, it depends on the industry and the occupation, but even after things get back to normal, approximately 70% of workers in Japan want to continue working from home. Also, considering the possibility of a second wave of infected, people expect to continue working from home.
Reference: Survey conducted by Persol Institute
Tips for a comfortable “Zaitaku-kinmu” and “Telework“
Now, we would like to share with you some tips for a comfortable Zaitaku-kinmu and Telework.
Organization and Management of Working hours
When you work from an office, it is easier to maintain the working hours range because the time you spend in the office is the same as your working hours.
While working from home, be sure to arrange with the company or you superior regarding overtime and working hours in advance to prevent unnecessary overtime work.
For example, if they contact you by email or any other communication tools at a late time and you respond, it should be included in the working hours in terms of labor low. When you work from home, the line between personal life and work becomes difficult to draw and it seems that many people who work at home work longer hours than when they worked from office.
Originally the company is responsible to manage working hours, but many companies do not have good management methods for working hours while telework, which can increase your working hours unnecessarily, we recommend that at the end of the shift to shut down the PC to avoid this kind of troubles.
This is an article made by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare / How to manage properly working time from home) to companies as a reference on how to manage properly working time from home. We believe this will deepen your understanding of the concept of working from home.
※The article above is written in Japanese
Furthermore, it is necessary to manage properly working hours and at the same time design measures that do not reduce labor productivity. Working from home means being in a relaxed environment which can reduce your productivity by losing focus and prolonging your work hours.
To prevent this situation, organizing tasks and schedules in advance is important. Recently, task management tools for various businesses can be used for free, so it would be better for you to strictly manage tasks and schedules at this opportunity.
Make use of “Ho-Ren-Sou”
First of all, do you know what is the meaning of “Ho-Ren-Sou”?. It’s an abbreviation word in Japanese for Houkoku(Report), Renraku(Communicate), Soudan(Consult) which is used in internal communication from long ago in Japan.
It’s a so famous word as the most of Japanese have been said in the companies which they have worked for.
It is common that when working from home, communication between members and bosses decreases. Due to the lack of understanding, the result of the work may be incorrect or the process of the project in which you have been part off cannot be understood. In the worst case, there is also a possibility that the results of your work will be downgraded.
To avoid such “mistakes”, you should periodically report your work progress to your manager, make sure the results are correct, and at the same time make them understand the work process.
Turn on the Work mode
Introducing Telework and Zaitaku-kinmu, it is a great advantage to be able to reduce travel time and go to work without getting on a crowded train (Maiin-densha). On the other hand, being at home all day makes it difficult to turn on our “work mode”.
How to turn on the Work mode
- Keep a clean appearance
Perhaps some people start working in sleepwear or loungewear for reasons like “no one is going to see me” or “I am not going outside the house”. If you are a person who does this, there is a probability that you will not fully wake up to have a good performance at work. It could be a hassle having to dress up when you are at home, but it is recommended to dress presentably. By dressing differently as you usually wear at home, it will be easier to idealize that you will start working.
- Separate your workspace from your daily-life space
This also makes it easier to switch to work by separating the work space and the living space in order to separate work from private. However, many people living alone have one room in Japan, so it may be difficult to work in a different room. In such a case, since it is good even in the same room, why not decide the work space and the private space by deciding the work space and not sitting in the work space in the private?
- Make short breaks
Taking short breaks regularly could improve your concentration. It is helpful to leave the seat for 5 minutes every time you finish a task to stretch before starting a new one.
There are still many companies that continue working from home or using Telework even after the emergency declaration been lifted in Japan. Working from home has many advantages, but it also has some disadvantages. We hope this article helps you work from home with high productivity and comfort.
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