The coronavirus has shaken up the workplace for the foreseeable future, with remote work being one of the biggest changes along with new regulations. Like it or not, remote work is here to stay, folks … at least until the coronavirus is gone for good. But, have you ever thought about how your business could benefit from working remote beyond the pandemic? I sure have…
7 Perks of remote work
Pandemic or not, there are plenty of perks when it comes to remote work. Check out seven benefits your business could reap by working remotely below.
1. Better work-life balance
One of the biggest benefits of working remotely is a better work-life balance for employees. According to a Gallup study, 53% of employees say a role with a better work-life balance is very important to them.
An improved work-life balance could mean the world to employees. Not to mention, it could:
- Reduce turnover
- Decrease stress
- Prevent workers from burning out
- Increase employee morale
- Boost productivity
- Make employees happier
- Give employees more free time
If you want your team to experience a harmonious work-life balance and keep your team’s productivity levels up, consider keeping your team remote even after the coronavirus dies down.
2. More flexibility
What do you think about being able to roll out of bed and walk straight downstairs to your office for work? Doesn’t sound like a bad idea, eh? With remote work, your team can enjoy more flexibility in their schedules (like soaking up every last minute of sleep before reporting to work).
Remote work’s flexibility gives employees the opportunity to do things they wouldn’t normally be able to do throughout a workday in the office. Employees can exercise, cook, clean, and do other chores during lunchtime instead of after work, giving them more free time and a stronger work-life balance.
3. Zero commute
Let’s be honest … commuting can be a major hassle. The traffic and extra time it takes to get to work and back home can be a real pain in the rear. But with remote work, you can say goodbye to time-consuming commutes and hello to punctual employees (hopefully), more free time, and boosted employee morale.
An average worker spends 52.2 minutes commuting to work each day (26.1 minutes one way). If you commute to a full-time job five days a week, you spend a whopping 4.35 hours commuting to work each week. And if you ask me, that’s just too much free time to waste in a car.
Cutting out a commute with remote work can not only make your employees happier and give them a better work-life balance, but also help them cut down on other costs, like gas and tolls.
4. Boost in productivity
Some employers may believe working from home can cause employees to be less productive. However, one study found that employees who work from home are 13% more productive.
And I’ll tell you what: remote work has worked wonders for my accounting software and payroll company, Patriot Software. Employees are thriving in their remote environments.
If you want to potentially see a boost in productivity, consider letting your employees work partially or entirely from home post-pandemic. Working in the comfort of your own home erases the distractions of the workplace. And in an environment free of extra noise and fewer interruptions, employees can focus on their work and get tasks accomplished more quickly.
5. Stronger communication
Take it from me, working from home isn’t all fun and games. To be successful at it, your team has to be willing to communicate with each other just like they do in-person. And, they need specific tools to communicate and collaborate. But if you give employees the necessary tools, they can stay connected and even enhance their communication while working from home.
To strengthen communication on your remote team and make it the best it can be, have regular team check-ins, invest in collaborative software, and keep in touch throughout the day.
6. Less sickness
Working from home can keep your employees healthy in more ways than one. Aside from giving your employees a mental health boost, remote work can also help workers steer clear of germs and viruses.
With remote work, sick employees can avoid infecting the whole office. Not to mention, employees who are mildly sick can still get work done (if they feel up to it, of course) without sharing illnesses.
Cons of working remote
Sure, there are a number of advantages to working remotely. But on the flip side, there are a few cons you need to be aware of, too.
Although they can vary depending on the type of business, employee’s role, and home environment, some disadvantages to remote work can include:
- More distractions (e.g., spouse, phone, TV, etc.)
- Employee isolation
- Security risks
- Technological issues (e.g., WiFi goes down)
Before you decide to have employees work partially or entirely from home, weigh the pros and cons and determine how it can impact your business. In addition to thinking about the cons from above, ask yourself the following questions to ensure remote work post-pandemic is a good fit for your company:
- Will we be as productive, if not more productive, as we are in the office?
- Which tools will my team need to succeed?
- Is the team on board with working remotely?
Take some time to think about whether or not remote work is the best option for your business and employees in the long run.
Mike Kappel is a serial entrepreneur, and the founder and CEO of Patriot Software Company, and its subsidiaries. Patriot Software, LLC is a developer of online payroll and accounting software for U.S. small-business owners. Connect on Twitter: @PatriotSoftware.