When a team member says they are going to be “working from home tomorrow” it can trigger eye rolls and conjure up all sorts of distorted notions. People working in their pyjamas. Long lunches. A disconnected, maybe even dysfunctional team culture. There are people who still think you need to be sitting in an office from 9-5 to get things done.
The concept of telecommuting has been around since the 1970s. So why are we still debating the pros and cons of it today? With the current state of technology, the idea of remote work has never been more relevant.
Freedom to work where you want
These days, our ability to get work done is no longer restricted to one building. For most of us, all we need to do our work is a laptop, smartphone and a decent broadband connection. This gives us the freedom to work wherever we want – from home, our favourite café, or even while travelling. A culture that supports remote working can deliver real benefits to an organisation’s productivity, communication, collaboration, innovation and profitability.
Other benefits of remote working are both proven and well documented. It will:
- Improve productivity and employee satisfaction
- Eliminate the necessity for office space
- Reduce costs
- Reduce commuting time
- Improve quality of work life and morale
- Provide a better balance between work and family demands.
Attract quality employees
For many organisations, remote working is viewed as a bonus – something that can be given to office-based employees under special circumstances. This attitude towards remote work lags behind the technology available to us, and indicates a company that is stubbornly clinging to old ways of working.
If you don’t offer a remote work option, it’s likely your competitor will. If you continue to postpone making a decision, your prospective talent pool will simply decide for themselves.
Across the board, employees are telling us that they value benefits and flexibility more than anything else. Freedom and flexibility are especially important for younger workers, who will soon make up the largest workforce demographic.
Ignoring the call to adopt remote work policies is going to limit your hiring pool and ability to compete. Many employees from students to entrepreneurs are already taking the initiative to work remotely on their own accord. Because they can.
Is the office as we know it about to disappear?
The shift towards remote working won’t necessarily mean the end of the office. Some jobs will always benefit from face-to-face communication, and some people will always prefer to be around their colleagues.
In many cases, a mixture of remote and office-based work can provide the best of both worlds – remote working for times when you need to put your head down and concentrate; office-based working for more communicative, collaborative or customer-facing work.
The technology available to organisations today provides for flexibility in both hours and times worked. For distributed teams like call centres, it means that staff members can simply log in and go – the applications of this are enormous and the business benefits are clear.
Companies need to embrace remote working because one thing is clear: in the future of work, the idea of being tied to an office desk 40 hours a week will no longer be acceptable or reasonable. And sitting in an office is no longer the only way to create an effective team and business model.
What have we done at Now Telecom?
At Now Telecom, we encourage team members to work from home, remotely and at different locations in the office creating a ‘flexible work’ environment. We’ve implemented the tech tools to allow this to happen and created a shift in our culture to support it.
Implementing UC7 across our company means our remote team members can:
- Hold face to face team meetings
- Collaborate and share ideas on the go
- Share documents and collaborate in real time
- Instantly send messages
- Send long messages and have conversations.
The key has been to develop a strategy that helps to keep everyone aligned, supported, and engaged. Talk to our team today to find out more 1300 UC7 777