What does ‘working from anywhere’ mean to you?

As we settle into the new ways of working and remote and hybrid working is starting to feel more normal, there appears to be a trend towards talking about ‘working from anywhere’, but what does this actually mean?

The lines between the home and office are already starting to blur, and if working from anywhere starts to encroach on people’s holidays, it might be time to redefine the virtual workplace.

In theory, being able to ‘work from anywhere’ sounds idyllic. To be tapping away on your laptop, under the shade of a parasol with a fresh fruit juice beside you, while the waves crashing below you might be considered the ultimate working experience. However, before you jet off to distant shores with your laptop stowed safely in your hand luggage, it is important that you think through the practicalities of bleisure (the term that has been coined to describe the blurring of lines between business and pleasure).

1. Can your job truly be done remotely? Not just part of it, but can you be away from the office or your customers’ premises for a prolonged period of time?

2. Can you easily take everything you need to work productively, with you, along with the normal packing which comes from being away for more than just a few days?

3. Is where you are going set up for remote working? Find out if there will be a dedicated workstation, strong internet and mobile reception, a printer or anything else you might need to get on with the job.

4. Are you constrained to working your ‘normal’ hours? This needs to be taken into account, especially if you are going to be working in a different time zone.

5. Will your home commitments – and those of your partners – enable you to pack up and work anywhere?

6. Is your company set up for you to be working remotely from somewhere that isn’t the UK? The legal, payroll and tax ramifications of working from different locations in the course of a year may make this prohibitive.

7. Is your IT security up to scratch. If you are taking customer data to different locations, you need to know that it is secure.

Plenty of formerly holiday destinations are now keen to make this dream a reality and some are even converting some of their bedrooms into offices and providing work-from-hotel offers – and some countries are attempting to mix play and work (plork anyone?), with visas for digital nomads available.

Whatever the ultimate destination is, the truth is for the majority of us, working from anywhere is still a way off and the journey is likely to involve many twists and turns – and probably a few false starts. We need to sort out the practicalities of hybrid working first, and maybe ‘working from anywhere’ will follow.