Does your company currently employ telecommuters or allow telecommuting based on employees’ needs? If not, it may be time to consider the variety of benefits telecommuting can provide for the organization.
In light of the recent decision made by Yahoo’s CEO Marissa Mayer — to end the employee telecommuting practice within the company — all eyes are on telecommuting. This large scale measure has created a heated discussion in regard to the interest and necessity of this flexibility practice. Many companies are beginning to question their own telecommuting practices…and even whether they should adopt them altogether.
A survey from Staples Advantage discovered that 93 percent of respondent employees thought telecommuting benefitted both the employee and the employer, while 53 percent of business leaders surveyed said telecommuting leads to more productive employees. By 2016, it’s been estimated the U.S. will have 4.9 million telecommuters — will your company employ telecommuters?
Here are five benefits to consider before you avoid or cut out telecommuting from your company policy:
1. Improved Company Culture. With so many employees seeking out the perfect balance between work and life, telecommuting offers a unique opportunity. Companies who allow remote work, even on occasion, are more likely to build an employee-respected company culture. Fostering positive company culture is a must when seeking to satisfy your employees.
A poll of 1,500 technology professionals revealed that 37 percent would take a pay cut of 10 percent if they could work from home. And when it comes to the environmentally friendly factor of telecommuting, 70 percent of employees reported seeing their companies in a more favorable light if they reduced carbon emissions. Giving your employees what they want and need in terms of flexibility, as well as taking steps toward making your company more environmentally-friendly, will only fuel a company culture worth bragging about.
2. Increased Engagement And Productivity. When companies are losing $600 billion a year due to distractions in the workplace, productivity deserves a conversation. While many employers are left looking for ways to minimize distraction, telecommuting becomes a clear a prominent answer for a variety of circumstances.
Working from home doesn’t just blossom happier employees, it improves engagement and overall productivity. It’s no surprise that two-thirds of employers report increased productivity among their telecommuters. This is likely to stem back to the increased amount of balance working from home can provide, essentially contributing to a new level of enjoyment and engagement in all they do.
3. Lower Employee Expenses. Telecommuting doesn’t just save you money, it also cuts the costs of your employees. From minimizing the necessity of maintaining a work wardrobe to nearly eliminating the cost of commuting, working from home even means gaining access to cheaper and healthier home cooked meals. The cost-cutting involved with working from home will be sure to leave your employees in a position to go the extra mile when it comes to challenging tasks faced on the job.
4. They’ll Be Less Likely To Quit. Employee turnover isn’t cheap. In fact, losing a valued employee can cost an employer between $10,00 and $30,000. There are a variety of reasons workers decide to change jobs, and they aren’t always due to a bad boss or on-the-job boredom. Many workers change jobs to shorten their commute, increase the balance within their life, and seek out companies who value their need for flexibility.
Eighty percent of employees consider telework to be a job perk. Your telecommuting policy is will give your employees an added bonus for sticking around.
5. Improve Efficiency. When you cut out the mundane task of commuting, unnecessary meetings, and basic workplace duties — productivity is bound to skyrocket. Telework allows workers to focus on their tasks in an environment they’re comfortable in. Cutting out the more menial tasks provides employees with an opportunity to focus on increased efficiency.
Providing your employees with the option of telecommuting opens the door to a variety of benefits. You won’t just have happier employees, you’ll also experience positive gains in productivity.
To telecommute or not to telecommute?
Did your company decide to utilize telecommuting? Why or why not?
Article by Heather Huhman
Heather R. Huhman is a career expert, experienced hiring manager, and founder & president of Come Recommended, a content marketing and digital PR consultancy for job search and human resources technologies. She is also the instructor of Find Me A Job: How To Score A Job Before Your Friends, author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships (2011) and #ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010), and writes career and recruiting advice for numerous outlets.
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