How Hiring Remote Workers Helps Your Business Succeed
Employed, remote workers are one of the fastest growing sectors in the workplace, according to research from workplaceanalytics.com. That’s not surprising, given that as many as 90% of the population say they’d like to work from home, at least part time. Still, some employers consider letting their staff work remotely to be a perk (it’s not, read this article to find out why) and ignore the many benefits to companies for hiring a virtual team. Not convinced? Read on.
It might sound like we’re stating the obvious, but you don’t need to give your remote employees a desk. They’re not in the office, they don’t need a chair, computer, telephone or to be able to raid the stationery cupboard. They won’t need coffee, paper towels, someone to empty their bin…you get the picture.
Remote staff don’t come with as much of an overhead to the company as on-site staff do. While this is a big benefit to any company, hiring remote workers can be a great way to minimize the cost of expansion or to quickly meet the demand for your services from new clients. Your business can expand without moving offices and all the cost and disruption that entails.
And while we’re counting costs, that also includes the companies carbon footprint. You’re also saving on the environmental costs of having larger offices, more consumables and the CO2 emissions of your staff’s commute, which brings us to…
Working from home improves the health and happiness of your staff. Why? Well, virtual team friend, or make it to your children’s piano recital is all great for personal well being.
Virtual team members are also spared the stress of the commute which is quite literally making people sick all over the world. With lower blood pressure, fewer headaches and less back pain, remote workers avoid some of the biggest causes of absence.
Health & happiness are two of the reasons that lead remote workers to achieve more.
Yes, contrary to the idea that working from home means watching Dr. Phil and doing the bare minimum, the truth is that remote workers are more productive than their office bound colleagues. It happens because they’re happier, healthier and less likely to get interrupted or distracted than desk-bound workers. There’s also the matter of time off sick…
Staff who work from home take less days off sick, on average, than their on-site counterparts. As we’ve already said, they tend to be healthier, but remote workers will still ‘show up’ even if they’re a bit under the weather.
Getting to work when you’re feeling rough is challenging. You have to feel much healthier to get up, dressed and drive into the office than you do to prop yourself up on cushions and log in on your laptop. That’s just one of the ways in which remote workers put in more hours.
For many companies, the cost of employee turnover is something of a mystery. But even if you have worked out a number, you’re not really defining the cost. When you lose someone who has spent time in the role, gained expertise and forged relationships within the team, you lose something valuable. Bringing in new people can risk upsetting the team dynamic.
The good news is that happier, healthier, remote employees are less likely to look elsewhere for work. That translates to reduced costs for your business.
Wider talent pool
While in days gone by, you had to rely on hiring the best talent that happened to be near your offices geographically (or be willing to relocate), technology has made the world a much smaller place. Now, when you’re looking to hire you can genuinely find the best people for you company from anywhere in the world.
Remote working doesn’t just open up your options geographically. Working from home also helps you to hire more women (working mothers), the ‘hidden gems’ who prefer to work from home for a variety of reasons, and helps people with disabilities compete on a level playing field.
Attractive to Generation Z
Move over, Millennials, Generation Z is entering the workplace! This is a generation who’ve been raised with internet a home, and who don’t go anywhere without a smart phone in their hand. These young people are natural digital nomads. They are perfectly at home with the idea of working from shared office space, a coffee shop or from the comfort of their own home.
To go back to the first paragraph, if 90% of the workforce currently wants to work from home? That’s only going to increase as more and more of Gen Z leave education and start working. If you want to attract the brightest and best of graduates to your company? Let them work from home.
But isn’t managing a remote team difficult?
The short answer? No. The slightly longer answer is that it isn’t any more difficult than managing a team that works on-site; it’s just different. You’ll use different tools to communicate with your team. You’ll work in slightly different ways (we advocate using the Agile Development Methodology, download our free eBook to find out why) and staying in touch is vitally important.
It’s also important to start by recruiting the right people. If you’re interested in finding the very best global talent to help with your next development project, why not give us a call.