Dubbed the “world’s largest working-from-home experiment”, the pandemic has forced us all to change the way we think about work. Remote working is quickly becoming part of what we’re all calling the “new normal”, with companies like Twitter recently announcing that it will allow its employees to work from home forever, even once its offices reopen.
Whilst not all business will go to such an extreme, it is widely accepted that the global increase in remote working will continue beyond the pandemic. Even the CEO of Digital Workplace Company, social entrepreneur, author and speaker Paul Miller thinks this will be the case. Who are we to argue?
So, here we’ve highlighted the five reasons why we think the increase in remote work will only be a good thing!
1. Better work/life balance
Remote working, not necessarily working from home but working away from the traditional office setting, is undoubtedly better for an employee’s work/life balance. Avoiding the morning commute can take hours off the working day, leaving time for exercise, family activities or simply catching up on household chores.
2. Improved productivity
Contrary to what you might believe, employees are actually more productive when they work remotely. According to a Stanford University study, fewer distractions and shorter breaks mean that remote workers are 13 percent more productive. And they are less likely to take sick leave too.
3. Flexibility = better employee retention
When it comes to retaining staff, flexibility is key. According to a US survey, 83 percent of respondents said that the ability to work remotely would be the difference between them choosing one job over another.
Two-thirds said a loss of flexibility would make them start thinking about looking for another job. So it’s not surprising that 82 percent of managers in the same study cited “flexible schedules and telecommuting” as their most effective non-monetary ways they increase employee retention.
4. Access to a wider talent pool
Not everyone wants to live in the hustle and bustle of a big city but by only employing workers within these metropolitan hubs, employers could be missing out on some of the best talents.
Remote working allows employees to do their jobs from wherever they choose to live, allowing employers to recruit from a wider and more diverse talent pool. Which is what we do here at Valo! We have teammates from all over the globe, which adds a true richness to our team!
5. Environmental benefits of remote working
A hot topic well before lockdown, the environment has undoubtedly benefited from the huge reduction in travel and fossil fuel use across the globe. Recent figures project that 2020 will see the biggest ever drop in CO2 emissions, more than wartime or the global financial crisis.
But even before the Coronavirus situation, the environmental benefits of remote working are well documented. In 2015, Xerox reported that its remote workers drove 92 million fewer miles, reducing the company’s carbon emissions by almost 41,000 metric tons.
So, if there’s so much to be gained from remote working, why isn’t everyone doing it?
Well, aside from the obvious sectors where remote working is simply not possible, such as manufacturing and service sectors, there are several factors that seem to be a barrier to remote working.
As our President Pekka Walkama discusses in his piece on CMS Wire, cultural variations can have a huge effect on the adoption of remote working. E.g. in Japan, China and South Korea, the resistance to remote working seems to stem from the traditional, top-down corporate culture, valuing presence in the workplace as well as long working hours.
Finland and other North and Western European countries tend to have a less hierarchical and flexible approach to work, with more of a focus on work/life balance, making them more open to remote working.
Accommodation is also a factor. In larger cities, such as Hong Kong or San Francisco, people are living in smaller, often shared accommodation which makes going out to an office environment more appealing.
Technology can also be the make or break of remote working success. With almost a decade’s experience in installing intranets and digital workplace tools, we know that there are many ways you can use these tools to empower your remote workforce.
Communication, collaboration and engagement are all key to successful remote working and can all be achieved with a bit of #ValoLove!
For more tips on successful remote working, see our blog on How an intranet can empower your remote workforce.
Plus, if you’re looking to improve your digital workplace quickly, Valo can help to have your new intranet up and running in a week!
If you want to get rid of the manual idea wall or box in your office and make ideation fun, effective and interactive in your Microsoft Teams, check out our Valo Webinar on the topic!
Valo has all the digital workplace tools that you’ll need in order to make remote working possible. Book a demo, schedule a call or send a message to find out how our suite of tools built on top of Microsoft 365 can help you today!