It has become increasingly common for digital professionals to work from a remote location, such as their home or a co-working space, or even on the move. However how does remote work affect organisations and employees? What are the pros and cons?
Remote working is when someone works outside of a traditional office environment, usually from home or a co-working space. This has become common in the digital sector, thanks to high-speed internet and laptops. However, there is still a debate amongst professionals; how does remote work affect organisations and employees? What are the pros and cons? Below we look into this and suggest how your company can bring in remote working.
Companies who offer remote work often have an advantage when it comes to attracting top talent. Remote work is attractive to many employees who value work-life balance. Furthermore, you are able to cater to people who are not local to the office.
A great benefit of remote working for the employee is the reduction in work-related expenses, such as transport, parking and often living costs. For the employer remote working can result in a larger workforce without a larger physical office space, thus saving money.
Not having a set desk gives each person the opportunity to work where they want to. There are a large number of people who can’t commit to being in one destination, due to desire to travel, or family commitments and so on. Therefore, having remote work is another chance for your company to widen the pool of workers available to you and bring in fresh ideas and experience.
When taking the opportunity to work remotely, employees are taking the opportunity to work in a space they feel comfortable in. This offers privacy, often fewer distractions and can result in decreased stress levels. Additionally, the commute is diminished, creating a more balanced work-home life balance and reducing frustration caused by delays and queues.
A major catch of working remotely is that it can be hard to develop professional relationships, because you are communicating digitally, rather than in person. Furthermore, it can be hard for employees to show their value to managers, thus making it more difficult to gain trust and move forward in the company. This can sometimes hinder productivity, but this is largely dictated by the work and how teams use technology to combat this.
Remote work isn’t for everyone and some workers do need more support and guidance to reach their full potential. This is something that can be solved with time and hot-desking is always an option.
There is no direct supervision away from the office, which some believe leads to a decrease in productivity. To calm these fears, we recommend using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to look at peoples performance and productivity. This requires creating tailored KPI’s and tracking each persons progress.
In conclusion, remote work has its pros and cons. However, if you have a reliable team and the digital tools needed to help with communication the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. If you would like to learn about one of these tools, read one of my blog posts on Trello. With digital natives gradually changing the way we approach working together, this style of work will become more and more commonplace in the years to come, so why not give it a go?
Jamie - Web Developer