‘WFH not panacea for all, clear metrics needed for scheme to work’

The government’s aim of expanding work from home arrangement for the public and private sectors will only work if employers draw up an effective strategy for their workers.

Leadership and communication coach Faridah Hameed said this was important as a proper work from home metrics will enable employers to measure productivity.

“The metrics to track productivity is often not spelt out or non-existent and this happens even in large multinational companies,” Faridah said.

“It’s pointless jumping on the work from home bandwagon if there is no proper system in place to measure staff productivity.

“Will a person who is not married, does not have kids or does not have a family to run be measured on the same metrics as a working mum or someone with a newborn?” she asked.

Faridah was responding to a proposal by the government to push the work from home scheme to encourage shared responsibility in households, increase productivity and encourage women to remain in the workforce.

In his pre-recorded speech in conjunction with International Women’s Day today, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin said the plan – aimed for both public and private sectors – will also enable workers to care for their newborn, aged and sick family members with full pay.

Muhyiddin also urged the Public Service Department and the Human Resources Ministry to study if the scheme can be utilised by those who have just lost their spouse to enable them to deal with issues related to death which takes time to settle.

Faridah said the option to work from home should be looked at from a case to case basis, and a manager has to decide on a formula that is workable.

“Chances are you are more disciplined and productive when you work with a group of people as you are in a workspace. You tend to juggle things at home and from experience, many do not have the discipline to work from home.”

Merely fulfilling a to-do list from home, she said, does not mean a worker is being productive.

“There are many important logistical or infrastructural issues that need to be looked into by employers but most of the time, they are not being addressed.”

Separately, Faridah shared she used to be a big proponent of working from home until Covid-19 hit.

“For a lot of women, working outside home is a sanctuary from the issues they may be facing at home, including domestic violence or abuse. Even for those who do not face such issues, just having time outside home to work without the need to juggle things at home makes a huge difference,” she said.

Working from home, she said, is not the panacea for all, especially for women.

Here’s a round-up of The News Normal today.


The country recorded 1,529 Covid-19 cases today with Selangor having the highest number of new infections (726 cases).

Sarawak and Johor recorded 252 and 120 cases respectively.

New infections were also recorded in Negeri Sembilan (89), Penang (76), Sabah and Kuala Lumpur with 71 each, Perak (49), Kelantan (28), Perlis (17), Terengganu (13), Kedah (nine), Melaka (four), Pahang (three) and Putrajaya (one).

The total number of cases to date stands at 314,989.


Today marks the seventh year of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines MH370.

Dubbed the greatest mystery in aviation history, family members of the 239 onboard the plane are still searching for answers on what happened to the flight that vanished during a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014.

Over the years, there have been many theories on what happened. Debris has also been recovered in the Indian Ocean.

However, there have been no traces of those on board or concrete conclusion of what happened to the Boeing 777 aircraft.


DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said there will be no political cooperation between its party and Umno ahead of the 15th general election.

Lim said the party has been consistent over its stand regarding the matter.


Women have come a long way since those silent days in history, confined by stereotypical gender roles modelled by society.

As we continue to fight for our voice and the rights to education, we have gradually transcended various barriers by making our waves and paving our paths of success.


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