Remote work continues to grow in popularity. Many companies like Google, Facebook, Oracle, and Microsoft will keep most of their employees telecommuting even after the pandemic. And their decisions have an implication. Studies show, too, that telecommuting can be very beneficial for both employees and the firm.
1. Working remotely can lead to “incredible” productivity
Researchers at Stanford University conducted a two-year study comparing the productivity of those who work from the office to those who sit at home. They studied the habits of 500 subjects and concluded that productivity when working from home increased by 13% (the scientists themselves call it “a huge improvement” and are surprised by these results). The project leader gave an interesting TED-talk about his findings. By the way, the company that took part in the experiment saved an average of $2000 per employee by reducing the number of office spaces.
2. Remote working helps retain employees
Stanford’s same study found that employees who work remotely are less likely to leave the company for new opportunities. They value their home comforts and are 50% (!) less likely to accept outside employers’ offers. At the same time, 55% of remote employees say they would start looking for another company if they were suddenly forced to work only from the office.
3. Working remotely reduces time off and sick leave
Every sick day is a loss to the company. Some CEOs are even talking about sick days gone because remote workers rarely talk about being sick. This was happening before the coronavirus: the number of sick days for those working from home is, on average, twice as rare. There could be several reasons. First, employees do get sick less often because they don’t encounter new germs as often. Second, they have less desire to take sick leave because they don’t have to go to work anyway.
4. Remote work increases the diversity of the workforce
Need to hire a cool niche employee, and you don’t have one in your city? If the company knows how to work remotely, that’s not a problem. Many large IT firms create several “hubs,” offices abroad. Studies have shown that the greater the cultural and ethnic diversity among employees, the better the company conducts itself. The difference between those who recruit workers only in one country and those who do not limit themselves in their choice is very significant – the profit of the latter is higher by 33-35%. The more global the team, the more exciting and unexpected ideas can appear in it.
5. Remote work reduces costs for employers
In 2018 in the U.S., savings among companies on employees who worked remotely was estimated at $5 billion. And that included only those who worked part-time! In 2020, as expected, the figure will grow by order of magnitude. Companies can reduce the cost of renting offices, preparing meals, keeping managers, and so on. All in all, one remote employee saves up to $10,000 a year in the United States.
6. Working remotely lowers costs for employees
It is profitable to work from home. You don’t have to spend money on travel, you don’t have to eat out at restaurants, and you spend less on depreciation on your car, shoes, and clothes. You don’t have to find a babysitter for your child when you can look after them yourself. According to TECLA, one remote employee in America saves himself about $7,000 a year. That’s more than his monthly salary.
7. Working remotely reduces stress
According to OWLLabs, in 2019, before the virus, employees who were allowed to work from home at least once a month was 24% more likely to say they were happy with their job. The decrease in stress was mostly due to transportation and extra time spent traveling. Remote employees were also more likely to say they were able to find a work-life balance. By the way, that’s not just the opinion of regular IT people but also executives. According to a study by OWLLabs, 18% more CEOs in the U.S. work remotely than in the office (and only one in five of the surveyed employees work remotely).
8. Remote work helps close the gender gap in IT
It’s no secret that there are more guys than girls among us. For one reason or another in our society, the female gender is now less interested in programming languages. And the sector suffers because of it: companies with gender diversity have 21% better financial performance. A 2017 British study suggests that there would be more of the fairer sex in IT if girls had the opportunity to work remotely. About 76% of women working in IT then said it was a fundamental issue for them.
9. Working remotely can extend the careers of older employees
If one still has a chipper mind, but the body is already failing – remote working can be the right solution. More than half of employees over 50 in the U.S. find themselves unemployed at least once and have to look for a new position. The more jobs available remotely, the freer such employees feel. Who are considered in the first place by their skills, not by “we are looking for people under 35 years of age?
10. Remote work is better for the environment
More than 30% of greenhouse gas emissions come from transportation. Reducing travel, especially in personal vehicles, improves air quality and helps combat global warming. It may seem that the effect of commuting is unlikely to be strong enough. But in 2019, scientists calculated that working from home helps as much as entire planting forests of trees. In the U.S. alone, 5 million “telecommuters” per year prevent 3.6 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve the same results, 91 million trees would need to be planted.
11. Remote work is a valuable perk for employees of all ages
More and more employees are beginning to demand the ability to work remotely. The younger generation (Gen Z) was the first, mostly because of their mobility. They didn’t want to lose their position every time they moved. Now many of Gen Z are becoming managers and directors. And continue to keep the same mindset. More than 70% of Gen Z executives (those now under 30) allow their employees to work remotely. By 2028, 73% of companies will at least partially work with remote employees, according to Upwork. Before the coronavirus, there were fewer than 30% of such companies.
12. Remote work is becoming the norm
Just a few years ago, remote workers, let alone freelancers, were looked upon as lepers. There was a stereotype that they were all lazy, changing companies at the left heel’s first call. You couldn’t trust them, and you couldn’t pay a lot of money. But now, this stereotype is rapidly changing. Remote work is gradually becoming in demand and even prestigious. A recent Global Workplace Analytics survey showed that telecommuting had grown 91% over the past ten years and 159% over the past 12 years. The next ten years also project growth in the neighborhood of 100-120%.
13. Remote work has a positive impact on personal and family relationships
Being able to spend more time with family and loved ones strengthen the bonds built. Remote employees can often arrange their schedules to fit in with family – instead of family fitting in with their work. Parents spend more time with their children, and wives spend more time with their husbands. And a happy and settled employee is a benefit to the company as well.
14. Remote work improves mental and physical health
Being able to see your favorite faces more often is already worth a lot. But telecommuting also takes away the most unpleasant part of the day for any “traditional” employee – the drive to work. Stress over traffic or hitchhikers, the same route every day. In America, the average commute is 26 minutes one way. Thus, a remote employee saves 52 minutes each workday. Oddly enough, this hour is mostly spent productively: the American Psychological Association found that remote employees allow themselves to eat healthier foods, exercise, and are generally better motivated for personal growth.
15. Remote work is gradually taking over “traditional” industries
In the IT sector, remote work no longer surprises anyone. But in recent years (and especially in recent months!), working from home has become popular in almost all industries. Even courts are now held via Zoom, with lawyers, judges and prosecutors, and even defendants sitting at home. Advertising, insurance, education, economics, science, even real estate sales – more and more telecommuters are appearing in all of these industries.
16. Remote working is our future
In a significant 2019 report from Buffer, 99% of employees (out of 2,500) said they agreed to work remotely for the rest of their careers. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said he had appreciated the benefits of working remotely over the past couple of months and will now offer 136,000 of his employees this option permanently. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey made a similar statement (although he only has 4,600 employees). Google and Facebook allow remote work at will until the end of 2020, with the prospect of extension. According to Forbes, we’re headed toward 50% of the population being able to work remotely, at least occasionally.
Bio: Steve O`Neil is a writer and translator with a master’s degree in marketing. He has a passion for learning to understand how things work and how events proceed. He is also has expertise in various fields, including social media marketing, lifestyle, and data analytics. Now, he is a regular editor and essay writer who provide writing help for students.
Follow Techdee for more informative articles.