The remote workforce trend shows no signs of slowing down. Owl Labs conducted a survey and found that 16% of global companies are now fully remote and 52% of employees around the world work from home at least one day a week.
Although there are challenges that come with hiring and organizing a remote workforce, the reality is working with a remote team might end up being one of the best decisions you could make for your business. I’ve used remote workers for over a decade, and the main benefit to me is that by having a remote workforce, I can also work remotely and be a digital nomad.
There are other advantages worth exploring too that have been backed by numerous studies and research. Consider the following.
1. Remote Workers Are More Productive
Remote teams get more done in less time allowing them to start new projects, spend more time doing what’s working, and ultimately improve your bottom line.
There are a few commonsense aspects to this. Remote workers tend to be more productive because:
- They don’t need to commute into work.
- They can finish their work on their own time.
- They aren’t distracted by their coworkers.
- They can take breaks when they need to.
- Their schedule is more flexible.
- They are self-motivated.
Additionally, according to a study conducted by the University of Illinois, telecommuters tend to go above and beyond the call of duty to be good citizens and give a little extra to the companies they’re working for.
2. You Can Draw From A Larger Talent Pool
If your business is oriented around your locality, you’re going to be a little limited in who you can hire. Certainly, you might be able to convince some people to move to your office, but that’s not going to work with every prospective employee. For the most part, you’ll be drawing from the local talent pool.
Remote workers change all of that as you open yourself up globally. I’ve hired remote workers from places such as Canada, U.S., UK, and Australia all while I have been traveling the world myself.
In addition to opening yourself up to applications from across the world, you’ll be in a prime position to attract even more talent. AfterCollege conducted a survey that found 68% of millennials would be more inclined to favor a prospective company if remote work was an option.
Remote work also helps improve retention rates by 10% so you can keep more of your top talent for longer.
3. You’ll Be Able To Reduce Costs
You don’t need to rent office space to be in business. There are certain advantages to gathering your whole team in the same space, but your costs would also increase. Remote teams can significantly move the needle the other way.
According to PGi, the average real estate savings with full-time teleworkers is $10,000 per employee per year. The insurance giant Aetna shed 2.7 million square feet of office space resulting in a cost saving of $78 million per year. The cost-saving implications of remote workers alone make it a huge draw.
4. Remote Workers Are Healthier
Numerous studies and research show that certain aspects of in-house work have negative effects on mental and physical wellbeing and these can be mitigated or reduced by working remotely.
In the UK, workers spend on average 58 minutes commuting to work. Commuting length has been correlated with higher blood pressure and negative mood in the workplace. Remote work removes the need for a commute and the associated negative effects.
The benefits don’t just stop with removing the commute. Overall workplace stress is vastly reduced with 82% of remote workers reporting lower stress levels, and over 3000 workers were surveyed by FlexJobs who found 77% of respondents would be healthier if they had a flexible job and 86% would be less stressed.
Remote workers can be happier and healthier, and the knock-on effects can have positive impacts on your business.
A remote team can be just as effective, if not more effective, than a local, in-house team. Although it requires some coordination, it allows everyone more flexibility, which can help your team maintain a healthy work-life balance. The overall benefits to your business and workers are evident.