When most people think of the benefits of working from home they tend to think about the benefits for employees, not the employers. While there are certainly numerous advantages of telecommuting for your staff, having a remote workforce will greatly benefit employers too.
Here are 8 of the many interesting benefits of having a virtual workplace:
1. Your Staff Will Be More Productive
Most people think if you let an employee work from home, they'll be sure to slack all day and miss their deadlines. Even if they get some work done, it’s not going to be as good because they probably had Netflix on in the background all day. Wrong.
A Harvard Business School study measured employee productivity of employees at the US Patent Office who were allowed to live anywhere. The staff allowed to work from anywhere were 4.4% more productive than their in-office counterparts. And a Stanford study found that work-from-home employees are more productive — by nearly a full day’s worth of work!
2. Your Staff Won’t Have to Commute
It’s no fun starting a workday with a lengthy commute, crushed into a train car, smushed on a bus, or being jostled on a busy city sidewalk.
No matter the reason or how long someone has to commute, commuting contributes to workplace absences and decreased employee productivity. Employees who end up in an extreme commute (longer than 90 minutes each way) are more likely to quit their jobs. Allowing employees to work from home helps boost employee retention, which means less time and money you have to spend recruiting and training replacements.
3. Your Staff Can Handle the Unexpected
What happens to workplace productivity when several people are unexpectedly absent on the same day? Sure, everyone else picks up the slack, but then is the entire office playing catch-up for a week?
Allowing staff to work from home means they are working, even when they can’t make it into the office. Whether that’s due to an unexpected weather event or even a personal emergency, allowing your staff to work from home lets them balance work and personal life, letting them be a better employee.
4. Your Staff Will Be in Better Health
With more time in their workday, remote workers often incorporate more physical exercise into their day than office workers, who are either stuck in the office or commuting to and from their homes. A healthy workforce means a more productive one.
5. It’s More Eco-Friendly
If you calculate all of the electricity being used to run the office and money spent on office supplies, it’s actually the opposite of being environmentally friendly.
Don’t forget that running an office contributes to pollution, too. Nearly 11.6% of greenhouse emissions come from office spaces. After all, you’ve got to keep the lights on, the computers running, and the coffee flowing. All of that requires electricity, and most companies can’t buy their energy from a green supplier.
6. It’s Much Cheaper
Sure, you’d like to have your entire staff centrally located in one office, where you can watch them work, collaborate, and have face-to-face time with them whenever you want it. But all of that comes at a price, in the form of office space costs, office supplies, and equipment. Having a virtual staff virtually reduces all of those expenses to zero!
7. You Can Hire the Best No Matter Where They Are
One often overlooked benefit of remote work is that you aren’t bound by geography. You can hire someone no matter where they live, which means you can choose from among the best employees in the world. And when you do find that perfect match, allowing remote work means you don’t have to pay for relocation expenses!
8. They’ll Be More Loyal
When you give your employees the ability to customize their schedule so that they can better balance their professional life and their personal life, an interesting thing happens: they become grateful. In turn, their gratitude manifests itself in the form of loyalty towards the company. A loyal staff equals great productivity and decreased turnover, which, as any employer knows, is a great cost saver.
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