Going remote allows a business to reduce costs while giving them the ability to more easily retain the top global talent.
By Jonathan Breeze
The decision to start a new business is a monumental thing for any new fledgling entrepreneur. For many, it’s when a lifelong dream becomes realized, finally becoming your own boss, and doing something that you’re passionate about.
However, starting a new business is no easy thing — you may have an innovative new product or service but without proper logistics, the entire company may crumble before it even begins.
In fact, the costs of starting even the smallest business can be so daunting that potential entrepreneurs are deterred entirely, or land themselves in serious debt.
Fortunately, there are other opportunities for business owners in the digital age. Going remote allows companies to reduce costs while giving them the ability to more easily retain the top global talent.
Cost savings really adds up
The most obvious benefit of going remote is the reduced cost in overhead. Renting out an office is one of the most costly parts of starting a business but with a remote office, there is no need to pay for rent, furnishing, and utilities. Large companies are already reaping the benefits of remote workers with American Express claiming to save $10 to $15 million a year by having a portion of its workforce remote. It makes even more sense for smaller companies, who find it harder to afford costly overhead fees.
On top of basic costs relating to office space, having a team that works remotely just part-time can save employers over $11,000 per year per half-time commuting employee. Having a large portion of your employees working remotely reduces overhead costs relating to air conditioning, computers, phones, and other small necessities required to keep a large office running.
Furthermore, by having most or all of its workers remote, a company will encounter little or no issues with scaling up or down as the team size changes. This is crucial as a small business will look to fulfilling new roles or focusing on a new department as it grows.
Bigger talent pool
One of the greatest limiting factors affecting any company’s growth is the issue of relocating employees to a single location. If your company is based in an unattractive location, it could be hard to get candidates to relocate out of metropolises such as New York or London.
Furthermore, foreign talent remains incredibly difficult to access due to visa issues and high relocation costs. Having a remote team allows companies to retain a group of well-trained contractors to help you grow your business from around the world.
Remote offices get rid of these issues–companies are able to recruit the best talent from wherever they want in the country or even the world. No longer are there limitations for people unwilling to relocate when you can communicate over the internet. Talent becomes an endless pool to choose from. Furthermore, many young people prefer to work remotely, allowing companies to prepare for a future soon ruled by Millennials and the rising Generation Z.
Another factor in favor of hiring remote workers is that they tend to be much more productive. According to a study from Stanford, remote workers are much more productive than local, with a 13 percent increase in productivity.
This makes sense when you think about it: From other employees discussing current affairs to excessive meetings, there are many distractions that occur each day in the traditional workplace. In a study, 61 percent of employees said that loud colleagues are a distraction with an additional 40 percent saying impromptu meetings decreased their productivity. Remote workers, free from any distraction, are able to focus on their work at an efficient pace.
But how do companies keep track of their employees all over the world? The advent of applications such as Slack keep everything in place and easy to manage. There is no loss in communication while avoiding the perils of a distracting work place.
There are many pitfalls that come with starting a new company. Traditionally, many have failed before they even began. Remote workplaces offer a unique antidote to these problems, allowing small businesses to thrive.