After the start of the recent coronavirus crisis, many businesses have moved their employees to remote work, and it’s easy to see why this change might be more permanent in the years to come. Allowing staff members to work from home permits for more flexibility, increased productivity, and higher profits for your company, but what are the biggest causes of this recent trend?
The most significant contributing factor to the increase in remote work options has been the advancement of business technology. State-of-the-art communication services, management platforms, and mobile apps have all made working from home more feasible.
Before the growth of online messaging tools, employees relied on phones, fax machines, and emails to talk to their coworkers outside of the office. While it was possible to interact through these channels, communication could be slow and inefficient. With new services like Slack, today’s remote workers can instantly chat or video call a supervisor to discuss a project. These services have also allowed remote teams to collaborate smoothly without having to meet at coworking spaces.
Similarly, digital management platforms have made supervising remote employees more accessible as managers no longer have to use out-dated spreadsheets to track the progress of assignments. Instead, they can use project management programs to track each workers’ performance from an online portal. That means more supervisors can work remotely as well since there is little need to have a physical office when managing employees is done digitally.
Today’s technology has additionally allowed more remote companies to perform their onboarding duties without requiring new hires to come into the office. By using an online bank account, employees can quickly set up direct deposits and even have their checks paid up to two days early, all without having to leave the house to visit a bank. In a time of state and local stay-at-home orders, this feature has helped many remote professionals have an easier time starting a new remote job.
As more millennials enter the workforce, employers are looking for ways to attract high-quality talent effectively. Since this new generation of professionals has put a higher value on their work-life balance, many companies have decided to offer remote work as a way to promote a company-wide culture of wellness.
When employees can work full or part-time from home, they can balance their personal and professional responsibilities better. Between raising children, owning a home, and personal errands, staff members can have a hard time managing their lives outside of a standard nine-to-five workday.
If staff members have the flexibility to choose where and when they work, they can spend more time being productive, instead of stressing out over their schedule. Workers can plan their day around children’s school activities, doctor’s appointments, and household chores to then focus on work without distractions. This freedom not only helps with a healthy work-life balance but can also boost employee engagement, morale, happiness, and job satisfaction.
Remote employees aren’t the only ones enjoying the many benefits of working from home. As companies were forced to rely on an off-site workforce during the fight against COVID-19, they came to realize the true potential of this trend. And as more small and medium-sized employers discover the cost savings of using remote workers, larger corporations may soon follow the permanent move to a virtual workspace.
Besides saving money on renting an office, businesses have noticed reduced costs when employees can work from home. Remote work statistics show that organizations with off-site workers have a 25% lower turnover rate than companies without, which means fewer costs from recruiting and hiring. Employers have also noticed an overall increase in productivity and reduced absenteeism when staff members can work around their personal lives.
Overall, these savings can lead to higher profit margins as employers don’t have to spend as much money when operating their business. Expenses like providing an office, parking spaces, internet, or hardware can be avoided and will save organizations millions of dollars each year.
Remote work opportunities have been growing in popularity over the last decade, and the current pandemic has only sped up the adoption of this trend. In today’s job search, you can find countless work-from-home options in customer service, call centers, marketing agencies, data entry, and even remote healthcare providers. Recently, more companies have recognized the potential of using a fully remote workforce to increase productivity, employee engagement, and profit margins.
Check here for a tool called “Remote Readiness Assessment” to help organizations measure their readiness for remote work. This 3-5 minute assessment helps in evaluating the six key areas that are essential to run a successful remote organization.