Remote working enables professionals and others to work outside of a traditional office or on-site environment.
We have always known for years that operational tasks need not necessarily be carried out from a specific place of work.
It is estimated that Generation Z and millennials will account for 75% of the global workforce by 2025. Many people desire and in a lot of cases expect flexible working to form part of their terms and conditions of employment.
Without the opportunity to work remotely, tech savvy talent will look elsewhere for a prospective employer.
The revolution in remote working started a few years ago and for many organisations, remote working has become a cultural norm.
Working from home has grown in popularity and is showing no sign of slowing down.
There are six factors driving the need for remote working:
1. The rise of digital transformation
2. Global events affect traditional ways of working e.g. the Coronavirus
3. Gen Z and millennial demographics
4. Talent shortages which exist in key sectors in the economy
5. A general need by organisations for a more flexible workforce
6. A desire by leaders to constantly improve productivity and reduce costs
The motivation exists from both the leaders in progressive organisations and the current breed of employees in the market to improve the ability and the opportunity to work more remotely.
Many on-site traditionalists fear the loss of performance, power and camaraderie that working with physical colleagues’ offers. But fear can bring positive change when you consider the evidence to support remote working.
There are benefits to the organisation and the employee of remote working.
The benefits to the organisation include:
1. Increased retention of key employees and others
2. Reduced employee and partner attrition
3. Operational cost savings across many areas of the business
4. Improved ability to attract and recruit talented individuals
5. Increased productivity from managers and operational personnel
6. Reduced levels of employee absenteeism
7. Improved ability to manage key projects
8. Improved levels of motivation and general morale
9. Reduced need for office and other space
10. Increased focus on teamwork and collaboration with others.
The benefits to managers and operational remote employees include:
11. Greater focus on the job as a result of reduced distractions
12. Supports the need for flexible working hours and conditions
13. Reduced commuting time to the workplace is a bonus
14. Greater work/life balance is achieved
15. Less stress in the job because of the experience
16. More likely to stay in the job as a result of the benefits
17. Likelier to stay with the company on its journey
18. Healthier eating and exercise regime is realised
19. More positive outlook to work is maintained
20. More time is spent with the family and/or significant other
Remote working is effective, but only when it is put into practice correctly. A change in mindset and skillset is needed to maximise the benefits of remote working and making it a cultural possibility in the future.
Leaders will need to review how they inspire the remote workforce. Managers will need to learn how to organise, direct and motivate colleagues in the virtual world.
Trust from everyone involved is important.
The remote working revolution has started. Early adopters are enjoying the commercial, operational and personal benefits of this alternative way of working.
It’s time for everyone else to think about it seriously.
Best wishes on your development journey, wherever it may take you.
John Stein, Founder of the Fast Five Series.
Source: Managing Remote Employees eBook 2020 ©