Before the pandemic, we could safely assume that most people’s idea of a job involved some kind of specialized facility. As the spread of COVID-19 worsened however, working from home became the new reality that many businesses faced.
Since then, we have had plenty of time to explore remote work life and discover the real effects of wearing sweatpants under a button up.
Remote work saves costs
This is probably the most appealing thing to business owners. Besides providing a work laptop if needed, working from home saves employers a significant amount of money.
All the money that was used for office supplies, utility bills, maintenance and equipment can now be saved for other business-related expenses. Moreover, the need for a proper office space for meetings can take place in a rented space, if required.
These costs are measured per person and a report by Global Workplace Analytics stated that businesses can save up to $11,000 per person per year by switching to working from home.
It eliminates job stress
Remote employees report increased job satisfaction and retention than traditional office workers. This is partly due to the major amount of stress they are being spared; from spending less time with their families, commuting, large meetings and the fear of being infected by others at work.
The comforts of an employee’s home make it harder to overstress, and that leads to a happier employee, which of course increases productivity.
It can be hard on employees
Freelancers who work remotely can attest to the fact that working in the same space that you sleep in, can be daunting. Not having a set punch-in punch-out time could blur the lines between home and office life. A day that lacks structure, routine and daily rituals can lower productivity. This can also hinder a person’s ability to unwind after a hard day, and in some cases, may lead to heightened reluctance/anxiety to leave the house as that now requires more effort.
Which brings us to the good news for the employer –
Remote employees log in more hours
Yes, it’s true. As mentioned, the lines between being “at work” and not, are less clear when working from home. However, contrary to what many expected, employees on average end up logging in more hours, not less.
An employee working from home need not worry about getting to work on time, or rush to clean up and get dressed after waking up late. Just get up, get your coffee and switch on that laptop.
Remote employees report less distraction
This one is hard to believe but yes, again it’s true. If you think about it, most distractions at work come from colleagues and meetings. In addition, many have reported that feeling safer at home encourages a greater level of focus, whereas the stress of being at the office might trigger distractions like engaging in banter with colleagues or taking more frequent cigarette breaks.
What we must keep in mind is that the months we have spent dealing with COVID-19 have been the ultimate experiment for remote work adoption. But, as we know from our many vaccine-related articles, it is far too early to draw any long-term conclusions.