In previous articles, we have discussed the important benefits flexible working can bring to employees, as well as the companies they work for. A key method of introducing flexibility to workers is providing the offer of working from home. Even if workers are office-based most of the time, a few days a month working from home can provide just the right amount of flexibility employees need. The option of remote working is beneficial for a variety of reasons.
(1) Health Benefits
Working from home can allow employees to build a better balance between work and life, leading to an overall healthier wellbeing. There is a proven link between a work-life imbalance and poor mental health, with those working from home experiencing 25% less stress than those without this option. This means that anything that could make maintaining this balance easier could significantly reduce an employee’s level of stress. Working from home, for example once a week, could give employees the extra time at home they need to uphold this balance. Furthermore, the option of working from home would also result in fewer sick days taken by employees for mild illness, such as colds. Something like this could persuade workers to take the full day off work, however, if the option of working from home is available this could be a much more preferred and productive route.
(2) Increased Talent Pool
If your company provides the option of remote working, it means you can hire from further afield. This subsequently results in an increased talent pool, through which you can reach perfect candidates who perhaps aren’t in your area. By offering employees the opportunity to work from home and breaking into this previously unreachable talent pool, companies can then maximise productivity and perhaps even produce a better level of work.
(3) Increased Productivity
Many workers who often operate from home argue that their output of work is increased. A Connect Solutions study, cited in an article by Forbes, found that 77% of remote workers get more done in fewer hours due to the omission of distractions, such as meetings and disruptive co-workers. It is important to note, of course, that levels of productivity can be rather subjective, and the ability to be productive from home varies across industries and job type.
(4) Less Time Spent Commuting
Cutting out a commute could save literally hours of some employee’s days. Working from home means that this time saved on commuting could be put towards work, allowing for more productive hours in the day. Not only could it save time, not having to commute could be a real moral booster for employees. After all, no one likes travelling for over an hour to get home every night.
(5) Saving Costs
With employees out of the office now and then, it’s safe to assume that costs around the office will go down. With things like office snacks and supplies not in as much of a demand, you’ll undoubtedly save some cash on things such as these. Employees with increased flexibility, such as the opportunity to work from home, also tend to be happier in their job which makes them much less likely to quit, saving the company in turnover costs.
Working from home clearly isn’t for everyone, or every industry. However, if it is possible in your area of work, remote working is a tool that should be utilised, even just to assist employees in maintaining a work-life balance. It can also have as many benefits for employers as it does their employees, with regards to saving costs as well as the possibility of increased productivity in workers, which subsequently leads to increased profit.
Remote working clearly has its benefits. If it works for you, utilise it! If not, stick to the office. We all work differently, and ultimately it’s important to find what works best for you personally.