A recent Gartner CFO survey revealed that over two thirds (74%) plan to shift employees to remote work permanently after the COVID-19 crisis ends.
The pandemic has proven that long-term remote working (or telecommuting) is fully achievable and, for many employees, more desirable than working in a traditional office. For staff, there’s no commute into work, greater flexibility, and remote workers are often more productive than their in-office counterparts.
This is made possible thanks to the latest advancements in managed mobility services and communication tools that has bolstered remote access and real-time collaboration.
In addition, the popularity of new Bring Your Own Network (BYON) initiatives have helped liberate staff from their desks and made remote working easier than ever.
The Impact of COVID-19
Before the emergence of COVID-19, remote working was already on the rise. In the last decade alone, its seen growth of over 90%, with more and more companies offering their employees the flexibility to work where they want.
Whether companies were prepared or not, the current climate accelerated the adoption of remote working across the world. Many businesses were forced to move their entire workforce away from the office at a moment's notice and continue their day-to-day operations from home.
And, now lockdowns begin to lift, we expect remote working to remain a key feature of many enterprises – after the COVID crisis and beyond.
But the question is: why? And what are the defining factors that will lead more enterprises to adopt remote working for the foreseeable future?
The Value of Remote Working
Remote working provides businesses valuable opportunities for cost-savings, gives staff greater flexibility, and can even provide long-term economic advantages too.
Here are some of the benefits remote working can have on your business, economy, and people.
Reduced Overhead Costs
Having a remote team can save money. It's estimated that the average real estate saving is around $11,000 a year per half-time remote employee per year. When multiplied across your entire workforce, this figure represents a significant reduction in costs.
These savings take the form of reduced real estate costs, less spend on rent and utilities, and daily savings on commodities such as food and other services.
Studies also show that flexible working leads to healthier employees, which, alongside reducing absenteeism, often means they bounce back quicker after illnesses.
More Flexibility, Better Talent Acquisition
The choice in when, where, and how they work, has become a high priority for many professionals, especially those with lengthy commutes, family commitments, or unique needs. Flexibility is a big draw, with 40% of people agreeing that a flexible schedule is the biggest benefit to remote working.
Remote working means employees no longer need to live near their employer's local area of operation. This widens the talent pool you can hire from, offering better hiring opportunities than ever before.
Plus, without having to commute, employees gain extra time in the morning and evenings each and every day. And this can boost productivity, with as many as 77% of employees report being more productive at home than in the office.
A Global Workforce
Global enterprises already leverage the strength of remote working – taking advantage of local teams to deliver a better service to those markets. But these advantages are now starting to benefit the local teams themselves, dividing business units down to individual employees all over the world.
Although geographic constraints may present challenges in leadership, remote working technologies like video conferencing and cloud software lets you stay connected with your teams no matter where they're located.
Remote Working is Here to Stay
A combination of remote and on-site working is predicted to be the most beneficial model of working for the future, post-COVID. But, before you commit resources, it's worth evaluating your business needs, and deciding whether you could benefit from managed mobility services (MMS) provider to help.
With remote working fast becoming an essential part of day-to-day operations and adding new challenges to infrastructure, this is more important than ever.