Andover-based insurance company Be Wiser has been criticised after asking its sales team to stop working from home.

The 50 members of the sales team had been asked to return to full-time office work from yesterday (October 12).

Posts on social media criticised the company for the decision, with one saying there was “no regard for peoples’ circumstances, safety, anxieties or general well-being!”

18 employees had previously been working in the office on a rota as they required “support that couldn’t be provided at home,” and the remaining 32 were then asked last week after conversations with managers. Five of these employees then raised concerns with the company over this decision.

Be Wiser said that one non-Covid medical issue was raised by one worker, who has been allowed to work from home, while the other four returned to the office "following further conversations."

In total, 252 staff for the company are based in Andover, with 77 now working in the office while the majority remain working from home.

The company said it had “invested heavily” in making their offices Covid-safe, and that they “have not made this decision lightly.”

A spokesperson for the company said: “Our company like so many others is facing unprecedented challenges, and we want to do everything we can to safeguard longer-term job security for our staff as we move through and eventually move out of the pandemic.

“In order to do that we need to make sure we remain effective and competitive, and we’re constantly reviewing how we work to make sure we operate as successfully as possible and deliver the best service to our customers.

“The sales team is obviously crucial to that, and it’s become clear that this particular part of the business works best when they are working together in a situation where they can motivate and inspire each other, rather than being separated by home working.

“We want everyone to be happy and secure in their Be Wiser workplace and will continue to work with all our staff to ensure that remains the case, and to review working arrangements in line with changing conditions.”