What Is Remote Work?
Remote work is a working style that allows professionals to work outside of a traditional office environment. To put it in simpler form, this is any work that does not require you to commute in the office.
Some remote workers are fully remote, meaning they work from home ( 40 hours a week). Other companies allow their teams to work remotely, say, one or two days a week. And then there are freelancers who technically work remotely because they’re calling the shots on their own business. All of these qualify as remote work.
Remote Work, Work from Home, Flexible Hours
Remote work is an umbrella term. As earlier defined remote work is working from anywhere
- Work from home: is literally working from the home. It is a form of remote work.
- flex jobs or flexible hours: focuses on your own schedule. Also, not all flex jobs are remote jobs. Remote work focuses on location.
Does Working Remotely work?
Remote work isn’t just convenient for both employers and employees, but studies have shown that it’s also more effective. According to Gallup’s report, employees across various industries who spent 60 to 80 percent of their time working remotely had the highest rates of engagement.
- 77% of remote workers report greater productivity, in part because they deal with fewer distractions
- The rise in the number of remote workers is up exponentially in the last few years, which is pretty clear proof that companies are seeing positive results
- Also, because more and more young minds say that they’re more interested in companies that offer some form of remote work, remote companies may actually be at a hiring advantage for top talent.
I certainly think remote work works, But let’s dive into some other remote work pros and cons.
Advantages of Remote working
Better Work-Life Balance
Work-life balance is one benefit that often comes to mind first when thinking about remote work. Many remote jobs also come with flexible schedules, which means that workers can start and end their day as they choose, as long as their task is completed. This control over your work schedule can be invaluable when it comes to attending to the needs of your personal life.
It takes an average of 1hour 30 minutes to get to work and back. Remote work lessens or eliminate the time spent to commute at therefore saving us time that would have been spent on the road or in traffic. If you work remotely just part-time, you’ll gain back 11 days each year that would have been spent commuting, according to the “State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce” report.
Getting that hour each day back, along with avoiding the stress that typically comes with traffic, can truly start your day off on a better note.
According to Global Workplace Analytics, people who work from home half time can save between $2,000 to $6,500 a year. Gas, car maintenance, parking fees, a professional wardrobe, lunches bought out, and this can all be eliminated from your spending entirely. These savings add up and put more money back into your pocket.
A Customizable Office
Being able to create a comfortable home office is a great benefit of remote work. Whether you simply want a more comfortable chair, or you have health issues ,you have the ability to make your home office what you want. In a home office, you can paint the walls in calming colors; take it to the next level with massagers, foot rests, and smart devices to make working easy and seamless.
Flex Jobs’ annual survey found that 66% of professionals think they would be more productive working remotely than in a traditional office, with 52% saying they go to their home or home office when they really need to buckle down and get work done. Working from home typically leads to less distractions, less office politics, a quieter noise level, less or more efficient meetings, the ability to dress more casually and comfortably, and, as mentioned above, a more personalized office environment.
A Happier Work Life
Remote, flexible workers tend to be happier and more loyal employees. Working from home has been shown to lower stress, improve personal relationships, and provide time for hobbies and interests. Coworker and manager relationships can be more positive as well without the distractions and politics that come along with an in-office job. Global Workplace Analytics reports that 72% of employers say remote work has a high impact on employee retention—plainly put, employees are sticking with their employer when they have remote work options.
Working from home can lead to better health in a variety of ways: more time for physical activity, the ability to eat healthier, less exposure to illnesses (cold, flu, Corona virus etc.), ease of caring for a health issue or disability, and the option to create a comfortable and ergonomic workspace.
Working remotely can give employees the time and environment needed to make healthy choices.
Disadvantages of Remote working?
Less Connection with Colleagues
“Face-to-face interaction is generally lost, and there’s no substitute for this during some activities, especially those more collaborative in nature. Video conferencing can sometimes offset this, but it’s not a perfect replacement. Feeling like a cohesive team is more difficult, and some people can never get past that.
Remote workers need to remain disciplined throughout their day in order to avoid certain distractions while at home. Especially when you are living with someone or family. Some people struggle to switch into work mode when at home.
Work/Life Balance Challenge
Although remote working is more flexible and if managed correctly can improve your work/life balance; many people can struggle to differentiate between home and work. When working from home it is important to make clear distinctions between your workplace and home space.
Rules to adhere to while remote working
- Choose a quiet and distraction-free working space.
- Have an internet connection that’s adequate for their job.
- Dedicate their full attention to their job duties during working hours.
- Adhere to break and attendance schedules agreed upon with their manager.
Effective Tips for Working Remotely
- Find a workspace
- Over-communicate & give feedback
- Invest in reliable tech
- Make a schedule
- Reduce distractions
- Use your peak hours effectively
Tools every remote worker needs
- TEAM CHAT (Slack, Whatsapp)
- MEETINGS & VIDEO CHAT (Hangout, Zoom, Youtube Live)
- PROJECT MANAGEMENT (Trello, Clickup)
- PRODUCTIVITY (todoist)
- DEV AND DESIGN (Github)
- CLOUD STORAGE & COLLABORATION (Google drive, dropbox)