When some people think of Remote Work, they may think of happy and fulfilled employees living the much sought after digital nomad life, free to work from anywhere they want. Others may have the idea that remote workers sit around in their sweatpants endlessly scrolling through Facebook all day in between Netflix binges. Whatever your opinion, Remote Work and freelancing is on the rise. However, some long-established companies are scared to embrace this modern way of working, concerned that it may decrease productivity and the quality of work produced, as well as have a negative effect on the company culture.
The Benefits of Remote Work: Does It Actually Work?
Remote Work is often seen as an employee perk, but when done properly it can also have massive benefits for the employer too. One major advantage of remote working is that it opens up a whole new talent pool, meaning that companies can hire the very best person for the job, free from any geographical restrictions. Another obvious benefit of Remote Work is that it can dramatically reduce costs – companies can cut back spending on everything from rent to electricity and office supplies. Remote Work means no hours wasted commuting to and from the office, and the flexibility that telecommuting provides can reduce the number of employee absences. Being able to choose a work environment that perfectly suits their needs leads to greater employee satisfaction which in turn leads to higher productivity rates.
Communication: The Key to Telecommuting Success
One of the biggest challenges of freelancing or working remotely is that it can be isolating, and remote workers may feel like they miss out or are not as valued as members of the team who are physically in the office. Communication is key. While it may seem banal, the chatter that you have with fellow employees over the coffee machine helps to create bonds and it is important to maintain this personal connection with other employees while working remotely. This can be done through frequent video calls, where you can talk face to face, as well as programs like Workplace by Facebook, which creates the feeling of a virtual office. It is also harder to measure employee satisfaction when workers are not physically in the office, so regular HR surveys and one-on-one meetings are a must.
A Good Remote Work Policy
Remote working means more than just letting your employees work from home on a laptop from time to time. In order for it to be successful for both parties, employers should set clearly defined goals in order to measure productivity properly and a clear and detailed Remote Work Policy should be put in place so that employees know exactly what is expected of them. Some of the main policies that should be considered in regard to Remote Work are tech support – what should remote employees do when facing technical difficulties? And internet security – something which is not guaranteed when working from public spaces as opposed to a secure network in an office. When done properly, the Future of Work is remote.