Remote employees need a 'virtual commute' so as they don’t feel like they’re working all day, says Microsoft
Microsoft feels remote employees must create a virtual commute of sorts so as to create a boundary between work and life.
Surely, of all the things we miss from our pre-pandemic lives, travelling to work is not one of them. However, Microsoft thinks that daily commutes have unique benefits of their own and wants to revive them in some form - ideally, replace the daily commute bit with morning and evening tasks.
By next year, Microsoft Teams will let users schedule “virtual commutes” or block time slots when users will be asked to set goals for the day and “reflect on wins, losses and to-dos”.
The main idea behind this exercise is that commute helps workers define that start and end of their day and gives them space to think away from distractions of work and home.
Microsoft is hoping that this “virtual commute” will help those working from home set definitive start and end times so as they are not “constantly working”.
According to The Wall Street Journal report, the feature is under development and may include asking users to list out their goals and tasks for the day. When the day ends, the feature will ask which tasks have been completed and will move the incomplete ones to the next day. The feature is also going to ask users how they feel in the morning and evening.
The biggest danger here is that all this will feel like more work.
This virtual commute sounds depressing, to be honest, but Microsoft says that this is an “attempt to promote employee wellness”. For a company that has primarily focused on connectivity and productivity, this is a welcome change.