This post comes from partner site FlexJobs.
Welcome to our “Work From Home Q&A” series. You ask a question about remote work, and a guest expert answers it. You can learn how to ask a question of your own below.
This week’s question comes from Brad:
“I work in an office and plan on asking my boss to allow me to work from home. Can you give me advice on the best way to approach my boss?”
Prepare your talking points
It helps to ask for a specific meeting to discuss this concern, rather than trying to squeeze it into an existing meeting, or to bring it up impromptu. This gives you time to prepare your talking points so you’ll be able to make your case calmly for working from home.
Here are some of the key steps you should take to make a well-received request:
1. Ask your manager and potentially the human resources department, depending on who the decision-makers may be and your company’s structure, to set up some time to talk with them.
2. During this meeting, you should have some key talking points ready to go. These may include your reasons for wanting to work from home and an overview of what it might look like if you were to work remotely.
The latter can include efficiencies and time savings, increased productivity, the ability to do your job better because of the flexibility of working different hours, and other factors.
3. If your personal needs require you to work from home because you feel unsafe in an office, you or a family member has a health issue, your child’s school is remote this fall, your parents need additional caregiving, or for any reason, it may be acceptable to explain your situation to your manager or HR department and ask them for a work-from-home arrangement as an accommodation.
Many workplaces have become more open to discussing personal needs now that the pandemic has forced so many people to combine work and life under one roof.
4. Have a plan in place for how you’ll stay a connected, active part of your team even if you’re at home when others are in the office. Being able to show the employer what it might look like if you stay home can help them grasp the situation and hopefully approve your request.
I am a career development manager and coach at FlexJobs, where I help people find flexible work, including remote, part-time and freelance jobs. Before joining FlexJobs in 2010, I was a career adviser for college students and alumni. I have a master of science in human resources management and am a certified advanced resume writer.
Got a question you’d like answered?
You can submit a question for the “Work From Home Q&A” series for free. Just hit “reply” to the Money Talks News newsletter and email your question. (If you don’t already receive the newsletter, you can sign up for free, too: Click here, and the sign-up box will pop up.)
You also can find all past answers from this series on the “Work From Home Q&A” webpage.