The coronavirus pandemic has brought a lot of changes in organizations. Most of us have had to shift from the usual office environment to remote working. Just the other day, renowned companies such as Twitter, Google, Apple were trending in the news for urging their workers to work from home but now it has become a trend for the majority of the companies. Every day, the trend grows higher and we have no choice but to embrace it. Statistics show that remote working was already settling in having doubled to 4.7 million workers since 2005, in the US.
According to the recent news, the transition seems seamless and easy. However, the changes to remote working have been uneven for some organizations for different reasons. For instance, a few years ago, IBM stopped remote working because of hindering employee collaboration and innovation. Organizations need to ensure remote working is implemented the right way; otherwise, it might be detrimental to the employees’ working experience.
How effective is remote work?
For a long time, working from the office was believed to be prestigious and more effective than working from home. Most companies avoided workers who would work from home. As recent as 2015, working from home was still considered to be a loss to the company. It was believed that the employees at the office were twice as productive as those working remotely. However, we are at different times. Are these claims true?
Many employees admit they work faster while at home than in the office. While in the office, they lag in the amount of work they do because even after completing the tasks, they will have to remain in the office until closing hours. At home, workers are motivated by the fact that they are free to engage in other personal tasks once they are done with the tasks for the day. This motivation stimulates them to work faster than while in the office.
A survey done by Airtasker reveals how effective remote working can be. Out of 505 employees working from home and 1004 employees working in the office full-time, the survey showed that employees working from home were more productive than their counterparts in the office. According to the survey, most issues revolved around staff productivity and working habits as follows;
- Remote workers take a break of 18minutes on average, while office workers spend 22 minutes.
- Office workers often get more distracted by their seniors by 22% than remote workers who are only distracted by 15%.
- Remote workers spend 1.4 more working days in a month which is about 17 more working days in a year.
- Office workers are more prone to stressful situations at work but have an easier work-life balance than remote workers.
- Remote workers are unproductive for about 27 minutes a day while their office counterparts are unproductive for about 37 minutes a day.
Though the results above may be encouraging companies to shift from office to remote working, the survey revealed that workers at home found it difficult to strike a balance between work and life. However, if well-implemented, working from home can yield more productivity and increase employee satisfaction than office work. It may not work for all fields of business but where it fits, it is the most effective.
How is the future for remote working?
Statistics released by Fast Company reveal that remote working software like virtual reality conferencing will become the norm in communication. Artificial intelligence will make it easier to manage remote staff. According to Buffer, 99% of employees today prefer working from home to office work. Remote working is therefore an inevitable change.
Accepting the change can put your business at an advantage. Though the transition may seem difficult, committed staff and proper technology will make it easy as possible. What’s more, a study by Global Workplace Analytics shows that 37% of remote staff are willing to take a 10% pay cut while working remotely. They are always on the lookout for opportunities that allow them to flexibly work from home because it is more convenient.
Organizations, like tech companies that hire dedicated .NET developers should therefore work on improving their tech capabilities and put in place policies to guide remote working, instead of resisting the trend. Consider creating key performance indicators to ensure employees perform to their level best and remain productive. Employees working from home are more conscious of their expectations and are aware that their productivity is monitored closely.