Have you considered incorporating remote work policy into your business? Virtual Vocations outlines 15 overlooked telework benefits employers need to know.
Whether you’re a budding start-up or an established industry leader, the future of the workplace is rooted in telecommuting. A study conducted by Global Workplace Analytics found that at least 80% of professionals in the United States would prefer to work from home at least two days a week.
We now live in a global society brimming with innovative technology. Your company doesn’t have to be an IT power player to capitalize on the ease and availability of virtual work.
Top 15 Overlooked Telework Benefits
There is an ever growing compilation of data to support the benefits of telecommuting for employees including an increased quality of life and monthly savings on work related expenses, as Virtual Vocations found in their 2016 Year-End Report survey. However, the gains are not a one-way street. Employers can benefit immensely from allowing their employees and independent contractors to work from home.
If you’re considering a remote option for your team, yet need some research backed data to consider the move, we have the outline for your board presentation covered. In this article, we dive into 15 overlooked telework benefits for employers.
1. Home Offices Reduce In-House Overhead
An often overlooked perk of a remote team is the reduction in an office infrastructure costs. From coffee and snacks to real estate and desk set up costs, having fewer people in your brick and mortar space can leave room to expand in other areas.
Cutting in-house costs can help fund programs and services that promote productivity for employees who perform at their top capacity with greater flexibility. With your team excelling and your overhead low, there is room to focus on your most important task, growing and developing your business.
2. Fewer Traffic Battles Mean More Work Wins
If your business is located in a city like Miami, San Francisco or Atlanta, it’s hard to ignore the growing traffic crisis. Yet, in every city, commuting daily drains valuable brain power, fuel and time. Not only can the strain of traffic delays and accidents take a toll on our transportation infrastructure, they can also negatively impact your employee’s morale.
After enduring an hour of dodging fender benders and waiting impatiently on stalled highways, even your star team members can feel weighed down. Providing telework options makes it possible for your workers to exchange taxing transportation routes for a restful morning routine.
3. The Germ-Free Office Space is a Beautiful Place
When an employee is injured, goes on maternity leave or has the flu, remote work options are an amazing alternative to using up multiple sick days or struggling through a day in the office. Studies like the one conducted by the Society of Human Resource Management show that telecommuting workers continue to work while sick when they can.
Knowing that almost 80% of call-ins are actually the result of family emergencies and stress, rather than illness, prioritizing well-being over clocking in is a valuable, yet overlooked, benefit of a remote work policy.
4. Champion Diversity through Reasonable Accommodation
In the last five years, several thought-provoking cases have set the stage for a strong argument supporting the adoption of telecommuting policies. In 2008 the ADA was amended to broaden the definition of disability, increasing the need for companies to evaluate how well their current work spaces accommodate the needs of workers.
Although Reasonable Accommodation requirements set by the ADA do not mandate companies utilize telework programs, setting your company apart as a leader in diversity and inclusion means considering telecommuting as an option. You will attract and retain qualified candidates who could benefit from working from home due to their disability adding an additional edge to your company many others pass up.
5. Help Your Company Weather the Storm
Natural disasters are a worse case scenario every office prepares for, yet hopes will never impact their workers, business or city. However, when there is a natural threat on the horizon or it is unsafe to travel after a storm, many workers have no way of continuing vital projects.
This overlooked telework benefit can give your business the ability to continue operations even when your office is closed. Adapting your disaster preparedness plans to include remote work procedures can ensure that your team remains both safe and productive.
6. An Overlooked Tactic To Retain Your Varsity Team
Baby Boomers and succeeding generations are predicted to work well into their 60’s and 70’s. Advances in medical technology make it a possibility for seniors to continue work if given the flexibility they require to give their best effort. Retaining retiree aged employees adds immense value to the workplace in terms of knowledge. Many seniors who want to continue working, retire because they don’t want the hassle of a rigid 9 to 5 schedule.
Telecommuting can not only save employers money in terms of hiring costs, it can also lead to more efficient training of new employees, less unscheduled absences and a smoother transition of your long time employees as gurus who contribute insight while spending more time traveling and enjoying their golden years.
7. Attract Talent Across Borders
As innovations in communication tie the world together more closely, the ability to recruit top talent from across the globe becomes an exciting possibility with telework options. Increasing the diversity of your staff in terms of perspective, education, and culture is of great benefit in our fast-paced global economy.
Hiring remote workers from a variety of states and countries is an efficient way to keep your pulse on the lightning fast movement of trends in your industry and capture the top tier talent that will place your business on the must watch list.
8. Happy Employees, Happy Work Life
One of the most telling findings of Virtual Vocations 2017 Remote Work Survey is how drastically telecommuting improved the satisfaction of employees. The number one key to sustainable success in business is the quality of the people you employ and the work they produce. The most overlooked telework benefit may be how great it makes your team feel to know you value their time and well-being enough to allow them the flexibility to work remotely.
9. The Overlooked Remedy to Chronic Turnover
Hiring costs are high. Forbes estimates that including training, recruiting new talent can cost employers an average of 10,000 to 30,000 for each new hire. This means when an employee decides to leave, you’ve investment walks out with them.
Often the reason an employee decides to go else where has much to do with their work-life balance and needs outside the job requirements. Flexibility is a key bargaining tool to attract and retain employees through the ups and downs they experience while keeping them energized and excited about working with you.
10. Eliminate the Time Zone Dilemma
When you have contractors and offices working across time zones, scheduling meetings can be a nightmare. An overlooked, sanity saving benefit of telework is enabling after hours and early morning meetings to accommodate everyone’s hectic schedules. Remote workers can start their day much earlier and extend their days later. The self-directed nature of their daily work makes it much more likely they will feel comfortable with an after hours meeting or two.
11. Less Water Cooler Chatter, More Productive Collaboration
The workplace can be a vibrant microcosm of ideas, networks, and information. Many times this is an inspiring environment, yet there is also the potential for distraction and information saturation. Give your team the option to create a work space that promotes excellence without the anxiety of office politics, chatter, and noise pollution.
When a high stakes project is coming up, employees find that having the solitude and quiet to focus on their task boosts the quality and productivity of their day. With 42% of workers naming gossip as the number one productivity zapper, remote work options may increase your bottom line while eliminating office-born conflicts.
12. Achieving A+ Attendance
From unscheduled absences to inconvenient sick days, one of the major challenges to a successful office environment is inconsistent attendance. Often times, sick days are taken when personal emergencies come up, from a leaking roof to a sick child, your employees have to wrestle with the balance between their regular attendance at work and their family responsibilities. Increasing attendance could be as easy as releasing control over where workers have to report.
13. Seamless Communication at your Fingertips
An overlooked perk of telework is its ability to enable better, more innovative collaboration regardless of status, location and traditional introvert/extrovert dichotomies. Within your office, there are at least five different communication styles.
These styles do not always translate into the effective transmission of information. This is why many workers prefer to text, email and IM, it not only allows teams to go back and refer to instructions, it gives everyone a chance to think and respond with intention.
14. Reduce Bias, Increase Leadership
Although the law helps to provide protections against hiring and workplace discrimination, remote work allows for an increased level of protection against bias influencing decisions both at the hiring stage and throughout the careers of your employee.
Not every worker has the charismatic personality that can capture the rooms attention, instead, some star workers are more reserved, making it difficult for their potential to shine through in the office. Remote work can help some to find their path to greater success and aid your company in discovering a quality employee who can help take your business to the next level.
15. Going Green Is On Trend
Space is becoming more and more limited. Our environment is increasingly congested with pollution from vehicles, waste, and lack of green space. Increasing your company’s commitment to environmental sustainability is easy with remote work.
Limiting paper usage, waste in the form of disposable goods, water usage and electricity helps to push our society towards a cleaner world for the next generation.
Take the First Step Into The Future
Telework is a leading driver of change in the workplace. As the availability of the latest remote technology expands, opening up the possibility of virtual work today helps place you at the edge of tomorrow’s next great innovation. Capturing the world’s best talent, keeping them excited and engaged is now easier than ever.
When considering these overlooked telework benefits while crafting your business’s remote work policy, start small and scale up depending on your company’s individual needs. Take the plunge into remote work and experience the substantial rewards of productive flexibility.
Which of these overlooked telework benefits is most appealing to you as a business leader? Share your answer when you connect with Virtual Vocations on Facebook and Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!
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