What a year 2020 has been! We have witnessed a massive shift in our workplace culture. Early 2020, most of us were waking up early, hurrying up to get a seat in public transportation and heading towards our offices and cubicles. Since the advent of the internet, remote work and telecommuting have slowly crept into our lives. Now, remote work has become a norm and a way of life as well. All thanks to the pandemic!
Gone are those days of working a traditional 9-5 desk job, in a fixed location, and then retiring in your 60s. This kind of conventional prospect of working is no longer appealing to the modern workforce. Many amongst us lament that remote work has interrupted traditional workflows while some are able to see the glass half full.
The most common questions that might hover around regarding remote work are – Are remote workers satisfied with their situations? Are they isolated and discontented? Are they more productive? Do they feel more valued?
People across the globe began discussing the immense benefits that accompany this style of work. Be it employee health, happiness and productivity. But for newer remote workers, these benefits can be hard to realize.
A recent study reveals that businesses have increasingly started offering remote work to keep its employees happy and productive. In order to be competitive in the market, businesses must offer flexible work practices as they are no longer regarded as a bonus, rather they are a necessity. This new form of work also allows the employers to gain access to the global market of skilled workers online.
Surveys around the world suggest that happy employees are 12% more productive. Based on a 1 to 10 scale, remote staff stratified their happiness in their job at eight. For workplace staff, the score was seven. 91 % of remote staff aforesaid they were additionally productive once operating far from the workplace, thus maybe all those low breaks and water cooler chats are literally damaging our overall potency at obtaining things performed.
The ratio of productivity and profit is directly proportional to each other. The more productive workforce, the more profitable business. If you want both of these, then you should strive to make your workers as happy as possible.
Let us have a look at some of the reasons why remote workers are so much happier and productive.
Workforce productivity greatly depends on environmental factors. Every worker is an individual. As such, workers perform best when they are able to customize their working environments accordingly. A bright and noisy office can be perfect for some but for others, it can be irritating.
If an introvert marketing manager and an extrovert software engineer co-exist in the same office, it is unlikely to create an optimal working environment for both of them. In such a case, where these employees are forced to work, their productivity and happiness suffer.
You should not be surprised to know that 91% of remote workers assert that they get more work done outside the office.
Flexible Work Locations:
In addition to facilitating individualized working environments, remote work also enables employees to work from a location of their choice. We all are aware that a large percentage of the global workforce comprises millennials. Travelling is one of their major interests but work restricts their annual travel time to just a couple of weeks of vacation. This is not considered ideal if you want to keep them satisfied in your company.
Very soon the world is going to witness a rapid increase of digital nomads in the global workforce. So, instead of imposing geographical restrictions on employees, you should value the freedom to travel. Or else, you may lose the brightest and talented individuals from your company.
Research reveals that travel has many positives; it reduces anxiety, enhances mental health and lowers the risk of cardiac disorder. The takeaway is, if you want a happy, productive workforce, then encourage your employees to travel. Remote work enables your employees to travel and contribute simultaneously.
Individualized Working Habits:
The standard workweek for most companies is working from 9 am to 5 pm, five days a week. However, working habits may differ from one person to another.
Some people are more productive during the early morning while some at night. Some would prefer working every day for a few hours while others like to work 40 hours in 3-4 days and then take a week off.
Choosing a work schedule that best suits your needs is necessary for you to be happy and productive. This is significant in relation to what time you start and end your work day.
Suppose 20% of your workers are late risers. Now, if you force them to begin their work at 9 am, it will invite dissatisfaction and poor productivity. However, an individualized approach to working habits allows workers to select their hours as per their preferences. This leads to improved workforce happiness and productivity levels.
Flexible working habits should not be a problem as long as you are sure that everyone in your company is working.
Thinking about the communication challenges of remote work, some managers are apprehensive of not being able to maintain a better relationship with the team. But in most cases, the benefits of remote work outweigh the disadvantages.
Taking your employees on team outings, checking in with them on a regular basis, administering feedback personally, maintaining a continuous stream of communication to know your workers personally are what conventional management wisdom refers to. This approach is perfect for managing some employees, but for others, it is not.
Remote work changed this traditional way of communication. Most importantly, it is not compulsory to praise your workers in person to make them feel valued. On a scale of 1-10, when remote workers were asked to rate in terms of how they feel at work, they gave an average score of 7.75 as compared to all workers, whose score was 6.69.
Polished Work Relationships:
Engaging remotely can be an obvious matter of concern for workers to get along with their co-workers. However, an excessive amount of contact may hinder performance. Whereas it’s nice to be friends together with your co-workers, researchers found that such relationships are a distraction too. Workplace staff spent a median of sixty-six minutes per day discussing non-work topics, whereas remote workers solely spent twenty-nine minutes doing an equivalent.
Managers were found to be significantly distracting, as they were found to spend nearly seventy minutes talking regarding non-work topics compared to the thirty-eight minutes devoted on average by non-managers. As a leader, think about using video conferencing or virtual phone systems to urge your workers along with a minimum of once per week so that they however want to be a part of the team.
Improved Physical and Mental Health:
Remote work offers a myriad of health benefits, both for the body and the mind. Every individual has his own health needs to cater to. Working remotely helps everyone to look after their specific needs.
Physical health is often improved through remote work. Workers are using their extra free time to exercise. Research reveals that remote employees spent two hours and forty four minutes on physical exercise each week, indicating a 25-minute increase over office goers.
Remote work also keeps people away from infections during pandemics and flu season. According to a recent study, remote workers avail less sick leave than conventional office employees. Considering the minimised exposure to potentially sick co-workers and fellow passengers in public transport, massive work delays can be avoided.
One of the most notable benefits of remote work is the reduction of stress and mental turmoil in daily life. Not dealing with a stressful commute, staying out of office politics, and feeling comfortable in your own space – all these contribute to improved mental health.
Remote work allows us to pursue all the things that are essential for maintaining good health. Getting up for a walk or engaging in a quick yoga session during work breaks are beneficial for both body and mind. Spending time in activities that make us happy outside of work is an important advantage leveraged by remote work.
Do you have a dream of learning a musical instrument or a new language? Do you want to try a new hobby or just spend quality time with your family? With remote work, all these things, that satisfy your mind and heart, are possible.
The feeling of remote happiness seems to grow over time. Those that had been teleworking between six to ten years were happier with their heap than those that were in their initial year.
In alternative words, those people who’ve chosen to figure outside of the workplace due to the liberty and adaptability it offers were shown to be additional content than those who had to figure remotely as a part of their job.
There are masses of increased knowledge to pore through within the comprehensive report. As an example, as the Dailymotion staff is involved, the most delighted ones were those that toiled scanter hours for seven days instead of the regular 9-5 weekday schedule.
A 2015 experiment by researchers at a university found that the performance of the remote staff improved considerably once they were free of the shackles of the workplace.
Not all folks enjoy the prospect of figuring remotely, however, if you do, you could end up happier and additional productive as a result.