The emergence of wireless technologies and cloud-computing has made work-life more flexible. Consequently, C-suite executives are toying with the idea of introducing a flexible work policy.
Millennials have also been a catalyst for the uptake in telecommuting. Among their top priorities are a work-life balance and companies that care for their health and well-being. Flexible working lends itself to the ideals of the modern workforce.
While some companies in the UK have doubts about flexible working, HR professionals in companies that have taken the plunge report telecommuting are proving to deliver multiple benefits.
Companies that rent several floors of office space can significantly lower overheads by introducing flexible working. With a portion of your workforce not attending the office every day, you can downsize and save on rental costs, utility bills and drinks.
There are also cost savings for employees. They save time and money by not having to commute to and from work, and in many cases, won’t spend as much on food and drinks during work hours.
A study conducted by researchers at Stanford University found that productivity levels increase significantly when employees work from home. Despite fears surfacing from the boardroom that flexible working will cause productivity to suffer, the opposite is true.
Working out-of-office enables employees to focus for longer periods and get through more work. Open-plan office environments, on the other hand, are distracting, and it can take around 20 minutes for individuals to regain focus.
Studies show that employees waste more than an hour a day when working in an office environment. On the fly side, they’re more conscientious when they work from home because they don’t want their manager to think they are slacking off.
Staff retention and attracting talent
A survey conducted by Powwownow found that 70% of employees in the UK favour companies that offer flexible working. Telecommuting helps to provide a solution to the work-life balance conundrum millennials strive for.
Consequently, younger members of the workforce, in particular, consider flexible working options when choosing a company to work for. Flexible working, therefore, has an impact on recruitment costs and attracting quality employees.
Flexible working policies are also influencing company culture and encouraging firms to upgrade their office design to suit the work-life balance mindset. Installing a flexible working design gives employees more autonomy and the freedom to choose where they work and how they work both in and out of the office.
Improved health and wellbeing
Open-plan offices have been found to harm mental and physical health. Poor air quality, airborne germs and increased stress levels in busy offices are contributing to an increasing number of working days lost due to illness.
Employee well-being has become a priority for executives. A Labour Force Survey reveals UK employees take around 137.3 million sick days a year. It’s been calculated the average employee costs a company £107.85 for every day they are absent from work due to illness.
Flexible working reduces the chances of employees spreading viruses around the office. It’s also been shown to boost staff morale, increase happiness and lower stress levels. A happy and healthy employee is a productive asset.
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Companies that have already introduced flexible working policies have reported favourable benefits. So, if you’re still not convinced telecommuting is the best option for your company, why not trial it and see how it goes.