10 Surprising Work From Home Benefits for Companies and Employees
It was John Lennon who famously said that life is what happens to us while we’re busy making other plans. And for all the tumult of the past few years, there’s one thing that holds true—one way or another, we still have to bring home the bacon. But when it comes to how—or more specifically where —we get the job done, times have changed.
After global events altered our lives forever, one of the biggest adaptations that has stuck with us is in the way we work. Working from home has become the norm for many of us—despite being a relatively new concept for a lot of industries.
By 2025, we can expect 36 million of us (22% of the workforce) to be working remotely , with even more employers adopting a hybrid work model. Of course, the pandemic has played a major role in this shift, with the number of at-home workers leaping from 6% in 2019 to 33% by May the following year.
With the lines between home and office having blurred forever, both workers and their employers may have valid concerns about life after the office. Yet, there are also plenty of benefits of remote working. (Bye, bye, rush hour! See ya never, suit pants!)
We’ll take a look at the ways employees and employers can equally benefit from remote or hybrid work models—today and in the years to come.
5 Benefits Of Remote Work For Companies
1. fewer sick days.
If someone is feeling under the weather, getting ready to go into an office can feel a little daunting. And if facing the morning winter commute is too much, a sick day may happen. Working from home, however, allows the employee to work at their own pace in an environment that’s comfortable to them—if they feel well enough to work. Research found seven out of 10 people worked while feeling ill since the rise of remote working.
Having the option to work remotely can also stop the spread of illnesses—something that launched working from home into the spotlight to start with—and can therefore ensure the workforce stays strong.
However, despite more employees working while showing symptoms of being ill, some employers have implemented new benefits for sick leave. 25% of organizations added additional paid leave or time off for illness, as well as more personal days being offered to employees.
2. Larger Talent Pools
One of the biggest benefits of remote working for a business is that it unlocks new talent. A company restricted to an office in the heart of Manhattan, for example, could only attract those who were living locally, able to commute or planning on moving nearby.
By opening up the talent pool to virtual workers, you can welcome great talent into the business who might not have been able to relocate. It means businesses can hire the best candidate for the jobs based on the person’s skills, qualifications and suitability for the role, rather than whether they can get into the office for a 9 a.m. start.
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3. Opportunities to Invest in Meaningful Benefits
Remote work offers employers the chance to reimagine employee benefits. By moving away from ping-pong tables and office snacks—as valued as they are—companies can shift to more meaningful benefits that employees care about.
98% of corporate leaders say they plan to offer new or expanded employee benefits because of the pandemic, focusing on benefits their employees say they want, like:
- Child and senior care benefits
- Mental health support
- A more flexible work schedule
These benefits help companies increase employee engagement, boost loyalty and attract top talent.
For the vast majority of employees, meaningful benefits are so important, they even trump a higher salary. 80% of employees say they’d prefer additional benefits to a pay increase while 88% of survey respondents would prefer a job with a lower salary and a flexible schedule over a job with a higher salary and a fixed schedule.
4. A Smaller Carbon Footprint
Climate change is one of the most pressing matters of our day and many employers are scrambling to reduce their carbon footprint and increase sustainability. To those companies, we say, good news! Remote work is one of the most effective ways to do just that.
Employees working from home won’t have a daily commute, meaning there will be fewer cars on the road—and fewer emissions out there polluting our air. In fact, key air pollutants fell to unprecedented levels during the COVID-19 lockdowns of 2020, with particulate matter falling by up to 40% in many parts of the world.
While the practices of early COVID-19 lockdowns are unsustainable, there are plenty of ways remote work can continue to have an eco-friendly impact. Nearly 40% of all U.S. carbon dioxide emissions come from residential and commercial buildings, along with a major portion of our country’s energy use and building materials. But remote work can drastically reduce the need for paper documents, electricity, water usage and other practices that harm the planet. A win for our planet is a win for everyone.
5. Major Cost Savings
There’s no denying this one: both employers and their employees save big when they make the switch to remote work. A recent BambooHR survey found that the typical worker spends 32% less on work expenses when working from home compared to working in the office.
Savings on gas and/or public transportation are a major factor here. But there are less obvious savings, too. When workers aren’t spending money on lunches out, nice work clothes and those random trips to the store on the way home, the change quickly adds up.
Likewise, employers enjoy serious cost savings when they allow employees to work from home—especially if the company is based in a major metropolitan area. By hiring workers in cities with a lower cost of living, employers can spend less on wages without sacrificing talent. Upwork estimates that employers in the top 15 most-costly metros could save up to $37,000 annually per employee by hiring remotely.
But these savings aren’t reserved for companies in expensive cities—or fully remote employees. Based on conservative estimates, Global Workplace Analytics reports that the typical U.S. employer could save $11,000 per half-time remote employee. Companies can save on rent, utilities, cleaning services and even reduce their tax burden by switching to a remote or hybrid work model.
5 Benefits Of Remote Work For Employees
1. you’re no longer alone.
Once upon a time, remote working was exactly that— remote . As far as some of your colleagues were concerned you might as well have been on Mars. Things are different now. We have a wealth of communication channels at our fingertips and we’re (for the most part) comfortable and adept at using them. The likes of Zoom, Teams and Slack have made it easy for employees and their employers to keep the lines of communication open. It’s a win-win. Businesses can feel confident their teams are still connecting and working collaboratively, while employees working remotely don’t feel isolated and lonely.
Hybrid working also offers employees the flexibility to prioritize the place they enjoy working most. Where some might choose the office four days a week to take advantage of the traditional workplace life, those who prefer carrying out tasks from home can opt to do more days in that environment. When it comes to WFH vs remote working, a recent survey found only 11% will go back to the office full-time . The times are changing.
2. You Can Create the Perfect Workstation
In an office, employees have no control over what color to paint the walls, how to decorate their space or what temperature to set the thermostat to. Optimum comfort is always in question, especially in shared office spaces. In fact, that temperature debate alone has long been a battleground among office workers .
A 2018 study found that one in five employees (19%) have secretly adjusted the office temperature during the summer months (13% to make it cooler and 6% to make it warmer, just so you know).
So how does this affect employees? The same study revealed that half of workers (46%) said their office is either too cold or too hot—with over half saying that their productivity is impacted when the office is too cold and 67% saying that sitting in an office that’s too warm affects their ability to perform effectively.
Working from home unlocks the ability for employees to create the perfect working environment and workstation for themselves: whether it’s a standing desk by the window, having the air-con on high, or placing pictures of the family around a brightly-painted room. And hybrid workers can take advantage of this arrangement too, knowing they won’t have to work in the same environment five days a week if they don’t want to.
3. You'll Race Toward Pressing Deadlines In Comfort
Jobs have deadlines. Whether it’s a project that needs to be submitted by the end of the week or a pressing email which needs to be sent by the end of the day, deadlines are inescapable.
But having the right environment can help you pin a task down. Meeting a deadline while working from home can be more comfortable and done with ease. If a worker knows they’re an early bird, they may wish to start a little earlier to meet the deadline and then finish earlier. Or, if they’re a night owl, they may choose to work a little later and then finish early the following day.
A recent study found that over nine months of working from home, productivity increased by 13% . This was attributed to several factors including:
- Quieter environment
- Fewer sick days
- Fewer breaks
Employees shouldn’t be working over their expected hours often as this misses the point of a flexible work-life balance. However, when a deadline needs to be met—whether it’s because time was taken out to see their child’s dance recital or a family member was sick—an employee knows they can work at the most convenient and comfortable time for them.
4. You Can Work from Home—or Bora Bora
For many digital nomads, wherever they lay their laptop is their home. Without the ties of a physical office, many fully remote employees are taking advantage of the freedom to work from anywhere—whether it be their hometown, the suburbs or the beaches of Bora Bora.
A 2021 study from FlexJobs revealed that the ability to move was one of the biggest reasons workers wanted to stay virtual. Study respondents cited a host of reasons they’d be tempted to move, including:
- Better quality of life
- Lower cost of living
- Different climate
- Change of scenery
- Closer to family or friends
- Access to better schools.
Relocations from big cities to midsize and small-metro areas rose by 23% in 2020 , with remote workers citing affordable housing, proximity to family and retirement as the top reasons for their move. Many of these workers maintain their big-city salaries even after moving to a more affordable area, increasing their disposable income —and making remote work vacations to Barbados, Bermuda, or another exotic destination more plausible.
5. You're More Likely to Achieve Work-Life Balance
The modern world can be hectic at the best of times. Flexible work practices like remote and hybrid work models are proven to be positively associated with work-life balance , especially for women looking to maintain a career after childbirth , or for the parents of preschoolers .
These patterns ring true for the majority of employees who started working from home during the pandemic. According to a 2021 Gallup poll :
- Only 6% of employees working from home would prefer to be fully on-site
- 9 in 10 remote workers hoped to continue working remotely.
Workers who said they prefer remote work cited the following as the top three benefits of remote work :
- Lack of commute
- Improved wellbeing
- Greater flexibility to manage work and home life.
Another study by talent agency Robert Half revealed that 60% of working professionals said their work-life balance had improved without a commute. Since the average daily commute clocked in at about 55 minutes in 2019 , many workers have gained back an hour of their day to spend as they please. Now you can spend rush hour pitying those poor souls stuck in traffic while you make a start on dinner.
How to Maintain a Positive Remote Working Environment
Even good things can have their drawbacks. Working in your slippers is wonderful, but comfort sometimes comes at a cost. To take full advantage of all the benefits of remote work, there are some things to consider.
Promote Healthy Work-Life Hours
It can be easy for employees to skip their lunch because they feel comfortable. While this might not be an issue when done on the odd days, when done regularly it can skew the work-life balance. This can trigger poor job satisfaction and burnout, leading to time off. Instead, promote healthy conversation around the need for breaks and how they can be factored into the working day.
Simple ways to have a break from the desk:
- Take 10-minute screen breaks when needed
- Go for a walk at lunch
- Eat your lunch away from the desk.
Keep Lines of Communication Open
To prevent anyone from feeling lonely and isolated, keep communication a priority. Whether it’s encouraging employees to video call 10 minutes each day to have a non-work-related chat or planning weekly manager one-to-ones. If any team member shows signs of becoming distant, try to reach out sooner rather than later to support their mental health.
There’s no denying that there are more temptations at home: it’s where we keep all our favorite things after all. It’s okay to enjoy these temptations in small doses and they can be easily factored into the working-from-home life.
- Use the commute time you’ve now got back to watch an episode of your favorite show
- Prep dinner at lunch to save you time in the evening
- Vacuum the living room during a screen break
- Tell friends and family you can meet them as soon as you’ve finished work, now that you don’t need to commute home first
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Encourage Employees To Find The Perfect Working Environment
Whether it’s fully remote or hybrid, encouraging the team to find a space that works for them is essential.
If hybrid is an option, ensure employees have a laptop so they can easily move between workstations. If working fully remotely, consider providing each team member with the correct office furniture. A desk, chair and extra screens (if needed) should be provided to ensure they can do their job to the best standard without being hindered. Don’t forget, the kitchen table is meant for mealtime, not filing reports.
Promote Team Days
WFH doesn’t have to mean never seeing your team in person again. Regular team catch-ups and team-building exercises is a good way to keep morale high and teams motivated. If getting together in person isn’t an option, organizing virtual team get-togethers can be a good way to build a positive work environment without breaking the budget.
Embracing The Work-From-Home Benefits
Remote and hybrid work models are here and they’re proving very popular. In a recent survey, 76% of respondents said that their companies had made the move to a hybrid working model. There are plenty of reasons for this, and with thoughtful planning, companies and their employees will save money, enjoy greater work-life balance and positively impact the environment.
So next time you’re tempted to groan about another Teams meeting, think of the extra cash this arrangement is putting back in your pocket—and cherish those comfy sweats that would never slide in the office.
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17 Key Benefits of Remote Work for Employers and Employees
Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, many companies have shifted to a remote workforce or hybrid work model and are now seeing the benefits of remote work for the first time.
While early predictions suggested that this new trend was a passing fad likely to end with the pandemic, it’s now clear that remote work is here to stay .
In fact, a recent study investigating the process of remote work adoption by US organizations found that the model has become a widespread and increasingly standard workplace practice.
This is great news for tech workers and those hoping to change careers , as it opens up a wealth of new opportunities. But what are the key advantages of remote work for employees and employers?
In this post, we’ll explore the following topics to help you understand why this work model is growing in popularity:
What are the most important advantages of remote work?
The top 9 benefits of remote work for employers, the top 8 benefits of remote work for employees, new work: why remote is here to stay, final thoughts.
Remote work , work-from-home , or telecommuting, has exploded in popularity for several reasons. For starters, it can help businesses save on workplace costs such as rent, utilities, and furniture.
And with the rise of high-speed internet and mobile devices, it’s easier than ever for employees to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world.
Cost-effectiveness and productivity are, therefore, among the most commonly cited advantages of remote work. But beyond these economic effects, there are many other benefits of remote work that appeal to both employers and employees.
Let’s break this down and consider the most important advantages of remote work from both perspectives, starting with the two just mentioned.
Organizations might want to adopt a remote work policy for many good reasons, including economic, social, and environmental ones.
To give you an overview, here are the top nine benefits of remote work for employers, based on our research:
1. Increased cost-efficiency
As mentioned, one of the most significant advantages of remote work for business managers is its cost-effectiveness. With no need to rent or maintain office space, businesses can save a considerable amount of money by allowing employees to work from home.
And given the rising energy costs, this will likely become an increasingly important factor in the future.
2. Increased productivity
Another benefit of remote work is that it can increase employee productivity.
A 2021 study investigating contributing factors to remote work productivity during the COVID-19 outbreak found, for example, that self-leadership and autonomy were essential factors in remote workers’ ability to maintain high levels of productivity and engagement.
Improved performance also affects the bottom line by reducing the need for overtime or extra staff.
3. Greater employee satisfaction
The increased satisfaction that remote work can bring employees is another positive effect. This is because the ability to work from home often provides employees with a better work-life balance, which can lead to increased job satisfaction and motivation.
Happy employees are also less likely to leave their jobs, which further reduces staff turnover and associated costs.
4. Reduced absenteeism
Employees who are happy and satisfied with their jobs are also less likely to take time off sick. An analysis of employee data conducted by the Fiduciary Group in 2020 confirmed this.
After the remote work policy was adopted, the Group saw a significant, company-wide drop in sickness days related, among other things, to increased job satisfaction.
5. Greater pool of applicants
When remote work is an option, businesses can cast a wider net when recruiting new employees. Since they’re no longer limited to local candidates, they can tap into a global talent pool.
This gives them a better chance of finding the best possible candidates for the job, thus improving the workforce quality.
6. Better talent retention
In addition to attracting better talent, remote work can help businesses keep the talent they already have. As explained, this is because employees who have the option to work from home are less likely to leave their jobs in search of greener pastures.
Therefore, remote work improves company loyalty and helps businesses save on the costs associated with recruiting and training new employees.
7. Enhanced corporate social responsibility
Recently, there has been an increasing focus on corporate social responsibility. And rightly so, as businesses have a responsibility to act in a way that is ethical and sustainable.
Allowing employees to work from home is an excellent way for companies to reduce their environmental impact, as the carbon emissions associated with business travel, for example, are eliminated.
8. Improved competitiveness
In a globalized economy, businesses need to be able to compete with organizations from all over the world. By offering remote work, they can level the playing field and attract top talent, regardless of location.
This is increasingly important in today’s climate of digital transformation , where businesses need to be agile and adaptable to survive.
9. Better disaster preparedness
It may sound far-fetched, but remote work can help businesses prepare for and respond to disasters.
With a remote work policy in place, enterprises ensure that operations can continue even if their physical premises are affected by a natural disaster, for example. So, a welcome side-effect of this work trend is that it boosts business continuity and resilience.
Having looked at the key advantages of remote work for employers, let’s now discover the benefits employees can enjoy.
If you’re currently looking for flexible work in the tech space, you’re in luck. There are plenty of great remote work opportunities out there , even for people without much work experience.
But how do you know if remote work is the right fit for you? Maybe the following eight benefits will help you decide.
1. Better work-life balance
The first and most obvious benefit of working remotely is that it gives you the opportunity to create a better work-life balance.
When you’re not tied to a physical office, you can structure your day in a way that works for you and gives you more time for your personal life, including family commitments and social engagements.
2. Greater Flexibility
When you work remotely, you can choose the schedule that works best for you. Flexible hours allow you to take care of personal errands during the day and then make up for the time by working in the evening or on weekends, if necessary.
This is a huge advantage for people who have difficulty fitting traditional work hours into their schedules.
3. Less time commuting
If you live in a big city, you know that commuting can be a huge time-suck. Working remotely eliminates this wasted time, giving you back precious hours to do things you actually enjoy.
In addition, you’ll save money on transportation costs and other commuting-related costs, such as gas or parking fees.
4. More freedom and autonomy
As someone who works remotely, you’ll also have more freedom and autonomy to do your job the way you want to. For instance, you won’t be micromanaged as closely as you might in a traditional office setting.
And you’ll have the opportunity to take more initiative and be more creative in your work.
5. Easier time management
Next on the list of remote work benefits for employees is that this work model can help you manage your time more effectively.
When you’re not constantly interrupted by colleagues or meetings, you can focus more easily on the task at hand and get into a flow state. This is especially beneficial for introverts who may need more quiet time to think and work independently.
6. More effective communication
Remote work can also make communication more effective. This is because remote teams use written communication more than teams in traditional offices, which can lead to more clear and concise communication overall.
Another advantage of written communication is that it can be easily documented and referenced later, which helps to keep track of projects and progress.
7. Comfortable work environment
Another big plus of working remotely is that you can create a work environment that’s more comfortable for you. Whether you prefer working from home or in a co-working space, you can find a setup that suits your needs and helps you be more productive.
Typical personalization options include setting up a standing desk, working in complete silence, or playing music while you work.
8. Fewer distractions
A final advantage to take into account when considering remote work is that you’ll likely experience fewer distractions. In a traditional office setting, it’s easy to get sidetracked by colleagues dropping by your desk, impromptu meetings, or general office chatter.
But when you work remotely, you can set boundaries and establish rules to minimize distractions, thus maximizing your productivity.
We also spoke to some tech employees who are working in either a remote setting or hybrid set-up. In this video, you can find out what they consider the biggest benefits of remote work are, what challenges it presents, and understand how working remotely has impacted their lives:
Given all these benefits for employers and employees, it’s no surprise that remote work is on the rise.
The future of work , post-Covid 19, is likely to be even more remote-friendly, with more companies offering flexible working arrangements and employees valuing the freedom of working remotely.
But the driving forces behind this new world of work go beyond just the pandemic. They include technological advances, the changing demographic of the workforce, and the rise of the gig economy.
This will continue to transform industries like tech, media, and marketing, which are already highly volatile and fast-paced, in one direction: toward a more decentralized, remote-first model. In that respect, the pandemic has simply accelerated a trend that was already underway.
So, if you’re looking for a career that offers flexibility, autonomy, and the opportunity to work from anywhere, these are the industries to keep an eye on.
The new world of work is full of opportunities, especially for those willing to embrace change and seize the advantages that remote work offers.
With the many benefits of remote work for employers and employees, it’s here to stay and will continue to shape how we work in the years to come.
There’s never been a better time to pursue a career in a remote-friendly industry. So, if you’re feeling stuck in your current job or looking for a new challenge, now is the time to consider a career move.
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Benefits of Working From Home for Enterprise Employers
Flexible work is the future of work . With companies all over the world asking their employees to work from home, remote work has become the new normal for global businesses and enterprise employers. Some of the benefits of working from home for employers and employees can include improved well-being and lower costs.
In this article, we’ll break down some of the other benefits of remote working and offer some tips on how to hire remote employees who are a good fit for your organization.
To be clear, there are remote working advantages and disadvantages. However, with software solutions that streamline communication and improve daily workflows, managing a distributed workforce has never been easier.
The biggest remote working advantages for enterprise employers all revolve around employee well-being, daily operations, and revenue. Here’s what enterprise work from home can do for you and your enterprise project management team:
1. Communication is more efficient
Thanks to project management solutions like Wrike, it’s far easier to get everyone on the same page. Keep all communication, files, and approvals in one easily accessible place to eliminate time lost sifting through email chains or needlessly taxing progress reports. Improve collaboration with customer profiles and project updates in real time.
2. Productivity increases
Studies show that telecommuting employees are 20% to 25% more productive than their office counterparts. Not only are there fewer social distractions, but there are also more opportunities to take necessary breaks when needed, which psychologists say helps with overall performance, motivation, and creativity— among other benefits of working from home.
3. Save on team building events
Save on social events such as birthdays or holiday parties and focus your budget on high-impact areas. You can still help your team bond virtually but at a fraction of the cost you’d normally expect to spend on things like rental space and activity materials. Save money, reduce the carbon footprint involved, and build a healthy remote office culture with the help of digital tools.
4. Employee health and wellness improves
Facilitate a strong work-life balance for your employees who work remotely simply through telecommuting. They get to customize their surroundings to suit their personal needs, get comfortable with their preferred outfits and tech setup, and take care of physical and emotional needs as they come up.
Although there are some common pitfalls for first-time telecommuters that might decrease these benefits, you can help employees in their transition to working from home. Simply set clear boundaries and expectations for work hours, projects, and meetings that allow them to relax and feel confident in their productivity without going overboard. The best way to effectively communicate your expectations is with a work from home policy . Also, find a mutually agreeable solution for daily or weekly check-ins to eliminate micromanaging.
5. Talent pools expand
Enterprise employers are no longer limited to hiring local talent, meaning they have a greater chance of finding someone with the exact skills, experience, and personality to fit best within their organization. Enterprise work from home allows hiring native speakers, bringing in perspectives from other countries and cultures, and creating a well-rounded group of professionals to innovate with.
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Working from home benefits for employees include the freedom to choose. Here’s how they can improve their lives and still be productive while working remotely:
- Work and live anywhere. As long as employees are able to finish their work at the same high-quality level and communicate with their core team, as needed, they can pretty much work from any place with a WiFi connection.
- Have flexible hours . Working nine to five isn’t a realistic model for most employees because of differing energy levels, task durations, and personal schedule needs such as childcare dropoff or health and wellness days. Remote work allows employees to remain productive within the hours when they feel the most innovative, so they can plan for the right amount of task time, and accommodate basic needs.
- Eliminate or reduce commuting. In 2019, American workers broke the historical record for commute times, coming in at 27 minutes one way (or much longer if you live or work in a big city with traffic). Long commutes negatively impact everyone involved — employees, their families, and even their employers. Eliminating this altogether will save every individual roughly nine full calendar days of driving or riding back and forth.
- Accommodate special needs. Remote working for employees with physical disabilities and mental health concerns can drastically improve their lives. Not only are their own home offices more fully equipped to help them thrive while working, but they’re also able to provide themselves with adequate self-care as needed.
There are three simple steps to hiring fully remote employees whether it is a full-time or part-time role:
- Find candidates through job boards and referrals. Use sites such as Indeed or Glassdoor to post open positions. Connect with peers in-person or through LinkedIn to tap into their network of talent.
- Strategically interview top choices. Create a list of questions to ask over video chat so you can get a feel for their personality and see if their resume matches up with how they present themselves.
- Use a skill test or trial period. Use a pre-made assessment for the non-negotiable skills on your list or create one of your own based on the day-to-day tasks this role will be responsible for.
Working from home can be positive for both enterprise employers and employees. Increased productivity, improved work-life balance, and reduced costs are just some of the ways remote work flexibility can be mutually beneficial. Hopefully, you now have some ideas for how to hire remote employees to work from home the right way.
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Top 21 Benefits of Working Remotely For Employers
In the past couple of years, we’ve been in the midst of a massive change in how we work, most of us working remotely. Technology has evolved, attitudes have changed, and the ‘old 9 to 5’ has become less rigid and a bit more understanding that lives don’t have to revolve around work.
Remote work has become way more common than it ever has been in the post-industrialised world, and currently, 56% of the businesses in the world allow for remote work .
It seems as though the remote working model isn’t going away anytime soon, but some employers might be a bit sceptical about switching over to this model.
So what’s in it for you as an employer? Is remote work just a fad that will fade away as soon as we’re done with lockdowns?
There are some incredible benefits to remote work, and of the massive list, I’ve put together a list of the 21 biggest benefits, so check it out and see if you’re still not sold on the idea of using remote workers.
1. Increased Productivity
One of the most common criticisms some people have about remote work is the potential for workers to not be as productive as those who are performing their tasks in-house.
It’s understandable that some employers might have concerns that remote workers might be ‘slacking off’ when they’re on the clock, but it’s important to know that the current trend of remote work has actually proven the opposite.
Remote workers tend to outperform their in-office peers . There are a few main reasons behind this. They are usually working in locations that are free from distractions and therefore more conducive to a productive working environment.
The other thing is that remote workers are also painfully aware of some of the stereotypes that other workers or employers might have about them not being productive, so they will often go above and beyond to make sure that they are seen to be doing outstanding work.
The bottom line is that just because someone is present in the office doesn’t mean they are being the most productive they can be. Companies actually tend to get more work out of their remote employees too .
2. Company Savings on Equipment
Employees are expensive. This sounds like a counterproductive statement, but they are. We need them to carry out the daily tasks of operating a business, but there are actually a whole lot of other costs that come along with employees outside of just paying them to do their job.
When you have an employee working within an office, you are expected to supply the tools necessary to do the job . You need to give them a computer, desk, chair and anything else they need to complete their daily tasks.
When using workers who are working remotely, you can negotiate that they use their own equipment to complete their activities. When using freelancers, in particular, this is normally the case because they often prefer using their own gear.
3. Hire Experts Reduces the Need For Training
Training new staff can be a very lengthy and, at times, costly process.
In fact, it normally takes anywhere from twelve months to two years before an employee is completely operational in the role they were hired for , even if they were an internal hire.
One incredible benefit of using remote workers is that you can select staff who are already skilled enough to perform the tasks you need completed. You can focus on engaging the skills of those who are already experts in what you need.
There’s currently no shortage of experts taking advantage of the booming gig economy .
4. A Much Wider Talent Pool in people working remotely
When you choose to use remote workers, you are able to hire on a more global scale.
This means that you can select from a much wider pool of potential talent. You won’t be limited by your geography, country or even time zone to find the best possible person who specialises in the role you have available.
As a bare minimum, using remote employees will double the potential hires you have access to.
5. Less Commuting for people working remotely
There aren’t many people who love the daily commute to and from work. For most, it either means spending hours in traffic jams or time on a crowded train or bus.
We all like to think that if we’re using public transport, it might be a great chance to get on top of some emails before we get to the office, but have you ever actually been able to do it successfully?
Commuting is terrible for a lot of people; in fact, a recent study found that for many employees, adding an extra 20 minutes to their commute would be as bad as a 19% pay cut.
Employees who are working remotely are also far more likely to start work earlier because they don’t need to commute, and they’re also usually happy to work a little longer to finish tasks because their end of day commute is from the computer to the couch.
6. Reduced Absenteeism
All employers need to understand that sickness, sick children, family emergencies and other causes of absenteeism are genuine concerns that accommodations need to be made for.
However, there are a number of cases where absenteeism isn’t actually related to any of these things. The reasons for calling in sick when you’re perfectly healthy can be incredibly varied, but most employees have done it at least once.
A recent study has shown that when employees are able to work remotely, they take sick days at a rate of three times less than those who aren’t allowed to work from home .
Remote work literally reduces the amount of sick days employees take.
7. Greater Employee Retention
Employees have more power over their work choices than ever before, and thanks to new technologies, new attitudes and new ideas of how businesses should operate, they are more likely to switch companies for better pay and conditions.
It’s important for companies to look closely at their staff turnover because potential hires will be doing exactly the same thing. It’s never been more imperative to aim for a good employee retention rate to attract and keep the top talent .
Using remote employees means that they won’t resign if they move to another city, they are likely to return to work sooner after maternity or paternity leave and most importantly, they will be happier with their work-life balance . In 2021, these are the things that will keep an employee .
8. Lower Labour Costs
Every business wants to find ways to keep some coin in that good old piggy bank, and it would seem that employing remote workers is another way to cut business costs.
As stated earlier, employers will often save money on equipment, but there are other ways remote working can lower costs for businesses.
In many cases, when an employee no longer has to deal with expenses like commuting, coffee, clothing and lunches, they don’t mind a slight reduction in wages. In some cases, people have saved hundreds and even thousands of dollars from eating lunch and drinking coffee at home .
Also, if you engage remote workers on a freelance basis, you are often not responsible for things like pension contributions and their taxes; this is the responsibility to those working remotely.
9. Save on Office Space
The more employees you have, the more space you’re going to need to house them. This has been the fundamental rule of office space for at least the last century.
It’s fine, and for many businesses, it works, but office space is expensive , and sometimes just housing a new employee can break the bank.
When employees are working remotely can keep costs lower at a time when a company has the potential to expand its workforce but doesn’t have the cash flow to rent more office space. Yes, of course, there are businesses that need to have a brick and mortar site, but it doesn’t mean every employee needs to work there.
Especially in the last year or two, we have also come to realise that having a nice office can be a great little humble brag for prospective clients; it’s actually not an absolute necessity to succeed in business. Meetings can be done online or in a cafe, or there are even communal working spaces that cater to this.
10. Reduced Need For Employee Perks
When your workforce, or at least part of it, is remote, you aren’t expected to supply as many perks as you would if your workforce was completely in-office.
The cold drip coffee , ping pong table and chill zone are all great and help promote a good work-life balance, but they’re just not necessary for people who aren’t in an office full-time.
The money saved from this can go back into the business or can even be redistributed to remote employees in the form of bonuses, which will keep up morale and, in turn, increase employee retention.
11. Better Mental Health For Employees
Stress and poorly managed mental health are leading causes of a downturn in productivity in the workplace. When a company is aware of this and does whatever it can to alleviate it, it’s a complete win-win situation.
A recent study showed that remote workers experience much lower levels of stress on a daily basis. This usually means that they are less likely to experience poor mental health or depression as a result of their jobs.
12. More Grateful Employees
Employees who have a great work-life balance tend to be happy employees. Happy employees are generally more grateful for the time they have to spend at home with their loved ones and the flexibility they have from working remotely.
The follow on effect of this gratitude is that grateful employees are more likely to do a favour for you when you’re in a tight spot.
Perhaps you need a report streamlined that will involve a few extra hours of work. A grateful employee understands that there’s a give and take in the working relationship and doesn’t mind taking one for the team.
13. Work Done Around the Clock
When you hire remotely, you aren’t limited to the hours of operation from the city your company is based in.
This can mean that you are able to carefully select employees to cover all hours of the day.
The work around the clock model is particularly useful for businesses that offer customer care and assistance.
It can make sure you’re able to provide the service without having to rely on shift work.
14. Expand Globally and Hire Natives in Other Countries
One thing that will certainly put you ahead of your competition if you are looking to expand globally is the ability to have natives on the ground.
Having employees who not only know the language of the country you’re expanding to but also the cultural norms and what makes their marketplaces different will set you apart from other businesses and quickly develop a loyal customer base. Working remotely is the benefit everybody is looking for.
15. Meet People From All Over the World
Just because you have people working remotely doesn’t mean that you won’t have a connection with them.
We’ve all seen how online connections can be just as impactful in the past two years, and with remote employees, your horizons can be expanded as you meet people from all over the world.
Working with an international team can also encourage open cultural dialogues and improve workplace diversity .
16. Avoid terrible Office Parties
This might be a small win for some, but it’s still worth mentioning.
Nobody likes a terrible office party. Sometimes they can feel forced, stuffy and just awkward, but they’re kind of expected when you have in-office staff. They’re great to watch on TV, but in reality, they are enough to drain the life out of you.
When you have people working remotely, there’s more of an understanding that you don’t need to be friends with all the people you work with because it is, after all, work.
17. Higher Morale
Most businesses that have allowed for working remotely or adopted a hybrid model have reported unanimously that employee morale greatly improves as a result.
A recent study found that remote workers are on average 20% happier with their jobs than those that work in an office.
Job satisfaction helps with employee retention, but it also does incredible things to productivity and your bottom line.
18. Better For the Environment
Corporate and Social Responsibility or CSR is fast becoming an essential element to a successful business.
It’s all about businesses understanding their environmental and social impacts at every step of their process.
It’s never a bad thing for a business to be viewed as one that is trying to improve their environmental impact , and using remote workers is a great way to do that.
By having your employees working remotely, they aren’t causing pollution through commuting, you are likely to pollute less (through disposable cups and packaging often used with work lunches), and you will conserve space and lower your carbon footprint.
19. Health Benefits For Employees
You might have an image of a remote worker as a sun-deprived vampire who never leaves the house and is chained to their desk all day long. Or maybe you think of them as someone who doesn’t even get out of bed to do their job.
The reality might shock you because remote workers tend to eat healthier and exercise more than their in-office peers . The biggest reason for this is that they have the time to devote to their physical health.
If you are working remotely, the time you save from commuting can be used to go for a run.
You tend to make healthier lunch choices because you can prepare your meals yourself, and the flexibility you have makes it easier to get regular checkups.
20. Technology to Monitor and Control Tasks
Most hesitations that employers have about remote workers come from the overwhelming sense that it will be too hard to monitor everything. They imagine it will be impossible to keep track of tasks and know how many hours an employee has been on the clock.
The truth is that there are countless programs available that solve all of these problems.
Some companies are already using organisational, and communication software like Asana and Slack to take care of things day-to-day, and switching to online is just as simple.
Whatever your needs are as you venture into remote working, there’s already a program out there that has been developed to do just that.
21. Outsource Employee of Record to Experts
Another benefit that has come out of the sudden surge of remote teams in the business world is that third party companies have stepped up to assist businesses in doing it both legally and successfully.
Everything from recruiting, to onboarding, to payroll and even the management of remote workers can actually be outsourced.
A company that takes care of this on a third party basis is called an Employer of Record (EOR), and they can take care of as much or as little as you like.
Swapp Agency can provide complete EOR services if you are wanting to initiate a project in Iceland and wider Nordic countries, hire some local experts or even bring in some foreign expertise. We know how to get it all done so that you can focus on your profit margins.
If you want to know more about how to engage our services, simply drop us a line .
Even when COVID is long gone, remote work will still be here. The future is going to be even more inclusive and allow for more work-life balance than it did before.
Whether you switch over completely to working remotely or simply opt for some hybrid working, it would be a real shame to not find a way to reap some of the benefits that remote working has to offer to businesses.
- What is Remote Work?
- What is a Hybrid Work Model? And, How Can it Work?
- How to Pay Remote Workers
- The Importance of Work-Life Balance
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Business | Aug 21 2023
10 Benefits of Remote Work for Businesses
The benefits of remote work for employees are a topic that has been covered extensively, but it’s also worth taking the time to understand how this arrangement can benefit businesses. Research shows that telecommuting can potentially lead to increased productivity and attendance. Moreover, there are various ways for employers to reduce costs and enhance recruitment as well.
Keep reading to learn about 10 ways that companies are benefiting from remote work or visit our home office solutions page for more valuable insights into remote and hybrid work .
The rise of telecommuting has led to a lot of discussion about the various benefits of working from home for employees, but it is worth stressing that this is far from a one-way street. With some careful planning and skilled management, employers also stand to benefit enormously from having remote teams in place (provided those teams have a productive workspace at home ).
In this article, we take a closer look at how work from home arrangements can be mutually beneficial for employers and employees by providing 10 specific ways that companies are able to benefit from remote work.
1. Improvements to Productivity
A major way in which businesses are benefiting from remote work is through improvements to productivity. While this flies in the face of what many expected when telecommuting first became viable, the boost can occur for various reasons, including fewer distractions from colleagues, a better work/life balance, more sleep, and improved morale.
One of the main pieces of research on this to date is a two-year Stanford University study, which divided a group of 500 workers into two groups – one working in the office and one working from home. Over the duration of the study, the productivity boost from working at home was equivalent to one full working day extra.
Of course, not every employee will automatically become more productive, but you can take active steps towards improvement by highlighting the various available methods for optimizing productivity in your workforce and ensuring employees are equipped with a productive workspace at home .
2. Reduced Equipment Costs
Providing equipment for a busy work environment can be expensive. After all, you may need to invest in computers, printers, photocopiers, paper, work desks, ergonomic chairs and a huge range of other items. When remote work is on offer, many of these costs can be either eliminated or significantly reduced.
For example, many companies allow employees to use their own computers and smartphones, which greatly reduces associated costs. The drain on resources like paper will decline significantly. Even in situations where desks and chairs need to be provided, they may not need to be bought for everyone because some employees will already have them.
3. Lower Employee Turnover
Another big benefit for businesses is the potential to reduce staff turnover by retaining employees for longer. This can be important because finding a replacement for outgoing staff – and training them to undertake the departing employee’s work – is expensive and brings with it a number of uncertainties.
Remote work helps companies to retain staff for a number of reasons. Many employees appreciate the flexibility and enjoy being able to work away from the office environment. It potentially allows stay-at-home parents to continue working when they may otherwise be forced to stop. Furthermore, physical relocation becomes less of an issue too.
4. Savings on Office Rental
For employers, renting office space can be extremely costly, so anything that can help to reduce these costs is usually going to be welcomed. Remote working opportunities can help to do this by reducing the amount of office space that is required, potentially allowing you to move into much smaller premises.
In some cases, where all work is able to be carried out remotely, it may even be possible to move away from having a single, centralized workplace entirely. Instead, all employees may be able to work remotely, and your company might simply pay to hire meeting rooms or co-working space as and when they are actually needed.
5. Access to a Wider Talent Pool
An often overlooked benefit of remote work is the removal of some of the employment barriers that are typically associated with office-based working arrangements. As a result of this breaking down of barriers, companies have the ability to expand their search for talent and find the most qualified people for each job, regardless of where they live.
Usually, when attendance at a physical workplace is required, recruitment efforts are naturally limited to the nearby area or people willing to relocate. Yet, when the possibility of managing remote teams is present, such restrictions are far less relevant, and you can potentially hire new staff from anywhere in the world.
6. Fewer Staff Absences
Absenteeism within the workplace can be a significant problem for businesses and other employers. After all, if work needs to be done and the person who is required to do it becomes unwell, the work may not be completed, or it may instead be completed by someone who is less qualified or less prepared.
Remote work can help reduce absenteeism; it is significantly easier to switch a computer on from the comfort of your own home than travel into an office, spend all day there, and risk passing on an illness to colleagues. Remote work can also reduce stress, which is another major cause of absences.
7. More Flexible Work Hours
Flexibility is often cited as one of the biggest benefits of working from home for employees, but it can be extremely useful for businesses too. This is because it opens up the possibility of having people working different hours than they may work when they are forced to attend a physical workplace.
Keeping a workplace open on a 24-hour basis can be expensive and may not be logistically feasible, but asking some people to work from home and cover a night shift may be viable. This can help turn a business into a continuous operation, which can be especially beneficial for providing around-the-clock customer service.
8. Improvements to Green Credentials
There is growing evidence that customers want companies to be greener and want products to be more sustainable. They are willing to put their money where their mouth is, too, spending more with companies they believe to be acting in environmentally responsible ways and moving away from companies they view as behaving unethically.
Companies using remote teams can use this to their advantage by highlighting the environmental benefits of reducing or eliminating daily commutes to the workplace. When this is combined with a more comprehensive ‘green’ strategy, it can pay dividends by attracting the most environmentally conscious customers.
9. A Healthier Workforce
Although reducing absenteeism is an important priority, having remote workers and remote teams can also help make a workforce more healthy in general. There are numerous contributing factors here. For instance, when working at home, it is often easier to make a healthy lunch, rather than relying on something quick and convenient.
The elimination of the commute to and from work means more time at home to recuperate, and it could also mean extra time in bed, meaning a better quality of sleep. This can help to optimize mental health and the immune system. Healthier employees tend to be happier, more productive, less likely to require appointments with their doctor, and so on.
10. An International Workforce at any Scale
Finally, for many companies, translation into multiple languages and localization are major priorities. When people are required to work in a single workplace, access to international talent is actually fairly limited, especially for some of the less common languages or specific regions in the world. Additionally, there may be issues with relying on non-native speakers.
In contrast, remote working arrangements allow companies to find workers all around the world. This means they may be able to translate text and speech into all the required languages, while also gaining boots-on-the-ground insights into various regions. Companies offering remote work options can also hire native speakers of important languages, providing a more reliable experience for a global customer base.
Working from home can provide a number of important benefits for employees, and these are often the focal point when trying to explain the merits of telecommuting. Nevertheless, it is equally important to highlight that, with some careful planning, the benefits of working from home can extend to the businesses employing those remote teams, too.
If you are considering remote work for either yourself or your company, you may also be interested in this useful guide to choosing a video conferencing monitor for remote employees. You can also find further insights and resources regarding WFH by visiting the ViewSonic work solutions page.
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How Companies Benefit When Employees Work Remotely
Companies that let their workers decide where and when to do their jobs—whether in another city or in the middle of the night—increase employee productivity, reduce turnover, and lower organizational costs, new research suggests.
Prithwiraj Choudhury , an associate professor in the Technology and Operations Management Unit at Harvard Business School, and fellow researchers compared the outcomes of flexible work arrangements at the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The team found that employees with liberal “work from anywhere” arrangements, similar to those offered at Akamai, NASA, and Github, among others, were 4.4 percent more productive than those following a more traditional “work-from-home” policy that gives schedule flexibility but requires workers to live near the office.
“While prior academic research has studied productivity effects of ‘working from home’ that gives workers temporal flexibility, ‘work from anywhere’ goes a step further and provides both temporal and geographic flexibility,” says Choudhury, who co-authored the paper, (Live and) Work from Anywhere: Geographic Flexibility and Productivity Effects at the United States Patent Office, with HBS doctoral student Cirrus Foroughi and Barbara Larson , executive professor of management at Northeastern University.
While digital technology has made workers more efficient and accessible than ever before, many companies have been slow to let employees work from home regularly, let alone from anywhere at any time. The study’s findings can help firms understand the effects of various flex-work options, and support certain types of employees as they negotiate with employers. Choudhury says the results have important implications for workers, who could potentially move to lower-cost areas, reduce commuting costs, and live closer to family and friends.
Isolating the benefits of remote work
To study the productivity effects of work-from-anywhere policies, Choudhury looked for a setting that would allow the researchers to isolate productivity changes among workers with similar job functions under different remote-work conditions. The USPTO provided the perfect opportunity.
Seeking to increase efficiency, the agency implemented the Telework Enhancement Act Pilot Program (TEAPP) in 2012. The program transitioned patent examiners to a work-from-anywhere policy over 24 months, shifting new examiners each month based on union-negotiated quotas. This implementation process enabled Choudhury and his co-authors to avoid what is known as the selection problem in social science research.
“The concern is that there is some underlying characteristic of people that is driving whether one wants to become a remote worker, and that characteristic is also correlated to productivity,” explains Choudhury.
Prior to TEAPP, examiners could work from home as long as they were within 50 miles of the USPTO headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia, but they had to report to the office once a week. The agency eventually allowed them to work beyond 50 miles away, but still required weekly trips to the office. TEAPP provided full autonomy.
Choudhury and his coauthors compared 600 examiners’ productivity under these various conditions. While working remotely, productivity increased among all examiners and continued to rise with each step toward the full work-from-anywhere policy, the researchers found. Productivity increased 4.4 percent when employees moved from working at home on a limited basis to the location of their choice. Based on a patent's average value, this productivity gain could add $1.3 billion of value to the US economy each year, the researchers estimate.
Many of the examiners also benefited financially by bringing their Greater Washington, DC, salaries to less costly regions, effectively increasing their real incomes. Early- and mid-career workers tended to choose locations based on future career considerations, while workers with longer tenures flocked to “retirement-friendly” destinations, such as Florida.
Work from anywhere isn’t for everyone
To put their findings in perspective and offer a framework for future research, the researchers emphasized the nature of a patent examiner’s work, which requires little coordination with co-workers on a daily basis. Examiners perform their work independently, adhering to the same best practices of patent searches—a style of work that prior research has termed “pooled interdependence.” Choudhury stresses that the research results apply only to companies or units that employ this type of worker.
“For the vast majority of such employers, remote work is a win-win, because the employee can move to a location of choice and save money in cost of living, and the employer will see higher productivity and lower attrition, and save on real estate costs,” says Choudhury.
Choudhury and his fellow researchers contrast pooled interdependence with “reciprocal interdependence,” which requires continued interaction between co-workers, and “sequential interdependence,” which involves a series of tasks performed by different employees.
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Employees with jobs that require minimal coordination could potentially use these findings in negotiations with a prospective employer, says Choudhury. However, work-from-anywhere policies could increase costs in work environments that require brainstorming and project-based interaction, says Choudhury, adding that more research is needed to fully understand the implications of remote work in more collaborative settings.
As some companies move to adopt broader telecommute policies, others such as Yahoo! have publicly retreated from allowing workers to perform their jobs away from headquarters. Companies have cited the need for office “face time” and the benefits of spontaneous interaction among reasons to avoid remote work, even for highly skilled, autonomous employees. To Choudhury, a deeper factor might underlie their reluctance.
“It’s trust—it’s the fear that people will shirk, and I think it’s the lack of clarity from the academic research as well,” Choudhury says.
The potential for this new research to help inform discussions about remote work policies excites Choudhury. Giving knowledge workers, particularly those who work solitarily, the freedom to choose their location could benefit not only employees, but companies and the environment, too.
“People will gravitate to a location where they want to live, rather than where they have to live,” predicts Choudhury. “This was the big promise of digital technology, that it would allow people to move away from the urban clusters.”
For companies seeking to expand their remote work policies, the USPTO program offers several other considerations for executives:
- Gradual transitions might help employees adjust . The USPTO required in-office examiners to work from home before shifting to the fully autonomous option. A gradual shift might give employees time to set up their own processes for working remotely while they're still close enough to seek their employer's support in person.
- Technology tools can support light supervision . The USPTO's program focused on examiners who worked independently. However, when an employee's work needed a supervisor's review, the agency required employees to use its IT tools to coordinate virtually, bolstering productivity.
- A period of in-office work can provide a strong foundation . Only patent examiners with two years of in-office experience were eligible for the USPTO's remote work programs. These employees had the opportunity to learn from working alongside more experienced examiners before moving away.
About the Author
Kristen Senz is a writer and social media creator for Harvard Business School Working Knowledge. Ailyn Pestana , junior designer and photo coordinator at Harvard Business School, created the charts above. [Image: NoSystem Images ]
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