Civil servants refuse to return to offices because of noisy colleagues
Civil servants refuse to return to offices because of noisy colleagues – and claim cacophony of loud talkers is ‘overwhelming’
- Staff are now noisier after getting used to the sound of their voices in lockdown
Civil servants in Scotland are refusing to return to the office because their colleagues have become noisier, it has been claimed.
Some employees became so used to the sound of their own voices during lockdown that they now apparently speak at a higher volume.
Vallath Kavitha Krishnan, a team leader in the Scottish government’s justice department, says the noise is ‘overwhelming’ for many, who have perhaps in turn become more sensitive during lockdown to the sound of others speaking.
More than half of Scottish government officials have yet to permanently return to their desks since lockdown ended.
It has prompted criticism they are becoming less productive and their absence is hurting retail and hospitality near to offices.
Scots civil servants are being deterred from returning to the office because their colleagues have become noisier, it has been claimed (Stock image)
Some became so used to the sound of their own voices during lockdown that they now speak at a higher volume (Stock image)
But talking to the Public Affairs In Practice podcast about some of her colleagues, Ms Krishnan said: ‘They feel really productive working from home because it’s very noisy in the office at the moment.
‘Working during the lockdown has changed some of people’s social skills. They don’t really realise how loud they might be when they’re talking.
‘[Some] find it maybe too loud or too overwhelming, and they find it more productive working from home.’
But Leon Thompson, of the industry group UK Hospitality Scotland, said: ‘It’s vital the decision is taken for civil servants to come back to the office and provide a much-needed financial boost for local shops, cafes and bars.’
A spokesman for the Scottish Government said: ‘We are committed to flexible hybrid working for our workforce, enabling staff to work from a range of settings.’
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