As the presence of COVID-19 continues to loom worldwide and companies across the globe navigate the reality of rising travel restrictions, isolation periods and second waves; the significance of remote working remains at the forefront of business management.
Whether they’re placing an at risk employee into a safe bubble or moving entire teams out of the office, firms are once again taking measures to ensure the safety of their employees while keeping their business processes ticking on.
Of course, moving a chunk of staff to remote working setups doesn’t come without related costs; time, money and productivity to name a few. But what about the benefits?
In this blog, we’re going to cover the positive aspects of having remote workers as part of your team and the many benefits it can present for your business.
ImprovED employee wellbeing and work-life balance
Before COVID-19 became part of public vocabulary, remote working had already been a rising trend among workers.
In 2019, around 30% of UK employees had experienced remote working at least once. However, this greatly increased in April of this year as an estimated 46.6% of people in employment were working at home in some capacity.
Following this huge shift, a report by Eskenzi PR found that nine out of ten employees would prefer the option to work remotely going forward. However, this doesn’t mean that the need for an office is now obsolete.
Among those working at home, 42% believe they have achieved a good work-life balance and boosted their overall well-being, with 40% of workers admitting remote working gives them more flexibility with their time.
On an average working day, there are many potential points of stress for workers. For example, those who have an hour commute to reach their office; this is 2 hours per day, 10 hours per week and 40 hours per month – the equivalent to an additional working week!
By allowing employees to utilise remote working and remove time-consuming or stressful tasks from their day, employees can
Better availability and planning
While employees can enjoy the flexibility of remote working and perks of tele-commuting, your business can also feel the benefits of their adaptable schedules.
This year, the popularity of online meeting and video conferencing solutions increased exponentially due to COVID-19, with 78% of corporate companies now using a video conferencing platform for meetings.
Remote workers now have increased availability for meetings due to the reduced need for travel, the removal of hunting down available meeting rooms within the office and the flexibility of scheduling as they do not have to rush between remote sites and office rooms.
With increased online availability across both remote and in-house workers, your business can enjoy the ability to squeeze in last-minute online meetings and be more flexible with your scheduling across the team.
Multitasking within meetings
As much as gathering your employees can be a great experience, nobody enjoys being trapped in irrelevant or unproductive meetings. Especially when they could be using the time to make progress on their own to-do list or projects.
With more meetings moving online to conference calls to include remote workers, employees can be ‘present’ in meetings by dialling in and listening to the conversation but can also enjoy the freedom to multitask without being rude.
Unlike with in-person meetings, those who choose to multitask during meetings can remain muted and avoid the risk of distracting their colleagues or derailing the meeting by making noise or looking disinterested.
Keeping everyone engaged
On the flip-side, hosting meetings online can also present many ways to keep team members engaged and interested in discussions.
When hosting meetings through online communication platforms, presenters can hand over control to other participants to make the meeting more interactive.
By allowing team members to share their screens or granting them the ability to be the main speaker, participants are more likely to remain focused on the meeting and interject with any discussion points they feel are important.
Remaining confident and in control
Online meetings can also remove the pressure of being ‘at the podium’. Many team members could feel uncomfortable when presenting to colleagues or clients in person, with the pressures of a live audience potentially throwing them off or making them feel nervous.
An online conference call can alleviate the social pressures of speaking in front of a group and remove the potentially awkward atmosphere, enabling them to think more clearly and present their ideas more effectively. A huge benefit to themselves and the overall business.
Make team catch-ups more enjoyable
When remote-working, employees no longer enjoy the benefit of seeing their teammates in person throughout their working day. However, this can also be a positive for your team.
As some of your workforce no longer enjoy frequent face-time with each other, they are more likely to have updates to share when they do eventually see each other. Whether it’s personal news or work-related achievements to congratulate each other on, employees are likely to have a good catch up when reunited and have more fun seeing each other.
If you’d like to keep your teams close and boost morale across remote workers, you can also make an event of in-person or online catch ups with activities such as quizzes or games. This will allow your team members to have a bit more fun with each other and share their personalities when communicating with their colleagues.
Different perspectives and less groupthink
Another benefit of having team members separate from each other is the potential for expanded perspectives.
With everyone sharing the same office environment and work schedule, the ability to think creatively and see beyond the day to day processes can be limited.
By enabling staff to work from a variety of environments, they are more likely to offer different perspectives and present a wider range of ideas within team discussions.
With a wider range of outlooks among your team, your business can reap the benefits of a larger range of ideas, as employees are able to come up with more ideas to solve problems and create new solutions.
Saving running costs for businesses
Now for something a little more tangible; money.
Yes, benefits for employees are important but without cashflow in your business there would be no employees. Therefore remote working must offer some kind of monetary value to remain viable and incentivise businesses to make the switch.
Thankfully, there are plenty of financial benefits to be gained from having remote employees.
Perhaps the most obvious case for remote workers is the reduced need for office space and the associated costs involved i.e. rent, utilities and day-to-day running costs.
By reducing the huge costs involved in renting and running office spaces, businesses can increase their investment of money back into the company (e.g. recruitment drives or improved training), enabling your business to increase productivity and grow quicker.
Companies can also use finances free’d up by reduced office space to allow for more company perks, such as bonuses or complementary event days for teams.
Not only is this a great benefit for employees but it will also help to keep your business competitive in the employee landscape, as 75% of employees are more likely to stay with their employer because of their employee benefits package.
Bringing it all together
Want to see how your business could benefit from a remote working solution?
Connex One is a secure and flexible software with remote workforce management and optimisation tools to help improve your business processes and increase efficiency.
To claim your free 30 day trial of our secure remote working software or learn more about our features, visit: https://www.connexone.co.uk/secure-remote-working/