There’s some controversy about the concept of remote working and telecommuting jobs. While workers love the idea of having professional freedom, some executives and managers don’t necessarily feel the same way. However, the more we explore the concept of flexible working, the more we discover that it could be the answer to the workforce of tomorrow.
After all, Americans are already telecommuting for work more often than ever. Gallup found that the number of people working remotely four or five days per week increased to 31% from 24%, and 43% of Americans say they spend at least some time working remotely.
According to recent studies by the World Economic Forum, work flexibility is one of the most significant factors in workplace transformation., 37% of American workers have worked virtually for some of their careers.
Remote Working Improves Workforce Productivity
The latest remote work statistics consistently prove that remote working is good for the workforce. 82% of telecommuters report lower stress levels, which is great for employees and employers alike. Less stress means fewer sick days and reduced employee turnover. In fact, remote work options can minimise turnover by themselves, with job attrition rates falling by over 50% when flexible working is offered.
When remote workers are disciplined and focus, they can enjoy better efficiency outside of the office. One study found that 30% of workers believed they accomplished more in less time thanks to remote working. At the same time, remote employees suggest that commuting is a great way to enhance productivity. There are fewer distractions and less noise than in the average workplace, making concentration easier.
More Engaged, Loyal Employees
Not only is remote working making our workforces more productive and efficient, but it’s also helping them to become more engaged in the workplace too. One study found that 87% of remote workers feel more connected when they use video conferencing software. This could be part of the reason why Americans over the age of 64 are working longer and more often than in any other era.
The freedom and improved engagement that comes with working remotely could mean that businesses can hold onto their key employees for longer – even beyond standard retirement age. Companies can keep their older generation workers around, while meeting the demands of younger workers too, with 68% of millennials claiming that the option to work remotely would increase their interest in an employer.
The Future of The Workplace
It’s hard to deny that the workplace is changing, and remote work could be a huge feature in that change. Telecommuting popularity is on the rise, not just for workers, but employers too. After all, companies from various industries report huge reductions in operating costs when employees engage in remote work.
Telecommuting could even help us to create a more sustainable world. Studies show that employers who embrace remote working have reduced their carbon footprint substantially. In 2013 alone, the fuel consumption per year decreased by 680 million gallons – thanks in part to the remote working revolution.
Across the world, telecommuting is gaining steam. Employers and employees alike are searching for more flexibility, and remote working could be the answer, with 60% of remote workers suggesting that they would leave their current job for a full-time remote position. We could finally be entering an era when remote work becomes the norm.
Rob is Founder & Publisher of UC Today, a leading news publication specialising in Unified Communications & Collaboration technologies.