Why working from home can be good for your business
Posted in society
Tuesday, May 26th, 2020
The Coronavirus pandemic has forced many more people to work from home than has previously been the case. Employers have adapted quickly to provide collaboration and conferencing tools to make this possible.
But you might already be planning to ‘get back to normal’ once social distancing rules are relaxed, which is likely to occur in the coming weeks to some extent, and continue over the course of several months.
However, it’s worth considering whether working from home can be good for your business in the long term. You could find that in more stable times, flexible working conditions can unlock considerable benefits for you and your staff.
First of all, many employees would love to have the opportunity to work from home once the COVID-19 pandemic is over (and it will end, although that might seem unlikely right now).
Working from home doesn’t mean lower productivity. In fact it can increase output for some employees, while others will be more willing to keep working after 5pm to finish their duties for the day.
Overall, companies that fully embrace homeworking as a part of their regular culture – and provide staff with the tools they need to do their job from home as standard – often make significant productivity gains as a result.
Talent Pool Access
Working from home is a form of flexible working, along with others like job-sharing and flex-time that accommodate employees who are unable to work precise 9am-5pm hours.
Together, these kinds of flexibility give you access to a wider talent pool including individuals who might normally be shut out from jobs due to fairly arbitrary contractual requirements like working hours and workplace location.
By catering for their more flexible needs, you can pick up the very best individuals for the roles you recruit into, and gain talent that your competitors have missed.
Working from home, the only commute is from bed to the home office or kitchen table. In some jobs, it might not even be that far, as employees might reasonably log on from a laptop without leaving the warmth and comfort of their bed at all.
In any case, on days when there is significant transport disruption due to delayed or cancelled public transport or road closures, your workforce will still be able to log on remotely, whether homeworking is their default or just there as a backup.
Finally, allowing employees to work from home can substantially reduce your overheads. If they never normally come into the office, you don’t need to provide them with a desk space, a computer (many will prefer to use their own laptop or PC if it’s safe and secure to do so) or consumables like stationery and tea or coffee.
Your utility bills will be lower, and your insurance could cost less too. In cases where your entire workforce can be home-based, you might be able to eliminate physical offices completely.
The potential benefits vary between different businesses, but they are often extremely compelling. So whether you have been forced to introduce homeworking by COVID-19 or you are simply curious about how it can help your business, it’s certainly worth considering for the long term.BACK