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The Challenges and Benefits of Remote Working during Covid-19 

Benefits and Challenges of Remote Working

2020 was full of challenges for individuals and companies. Indeed, as strict social distancing rules and various lockdowns were enforced, companies had to reinvent their working approach and quickly develop systems to allow many employees to work from home. 

And as we settle into 2021, it looks like the first half of the year might be pretty similar. No, we’re not being negative Nancy’s, we’re just being realistic 😉

As a result, remote working is here to stay! 

Now, let’s be honest, if you’re an employee, working from home might have its perks! No more commuting, agonizing behind people walking slowly in front of you to the tube, and no more wearing regular clothes. Hello PJ’s all day! But if you’re an employer, the lack of control and collaboration might be a big drawback. However, not all is bad with remote working!  

Don’t believe us? 

In this article, we’ll highlight the challenges remote working poses to employers before detailing the benefits for both employers and employees! 

Challenges for Employers 

While the strict measures used to fight the virus have made working from home essential in 2020 and 2021, there are numerous challenges for employers.  

Fewer Collaboration Opportunities

Sure, technology allows employees to stay connected and collaborate remotely. But if your team thrives in a fast-paced and highly collaborative environment, remote working might be a struggle. 

Indeed, face to face communication helps humans connect and bond in deeper ways than online technology enables. For instance, when two people discuss an idea in the same room, they can quickly learn from each other’s body language, making it easier to share ideas and collaborate.

Besides, no more popping over to Andrew’s desk to ask for something. Your employees now have to email or call, potentially waiting for hours before getting a response. 

As a result, even though your employees can discuss ideas and projects using messaging apps and video conferencing tools, you might notice a drop in collaboration, innovation, or initiative. 

Less Visibility and Control

If your company’s work culture is based on a hands-on approach where managers keep a close eye on their teams to ensure they’re on track, remote working can represent a massive challenge for you!  

You won’t be able to tour the office or the building to ensure your employees aren’t on YouTube or Facebook, mindlessly scrolling through. And while task management tools can help you track what your employees are working on, monitoring the team can become more difficult as they’re not sitting in the office. 

Productivity Might be Impacted

While data suggest creative tasks are better performed at home, a recent study revealed that remote working could negatively impact productivity for repetitive or complex tasks.  

Indeed, our homes brim with distractions such as noisy kids, the TV, or unexpected visitors. For instance, multi-tasking mums or dads might be tempted to put a quick load of washing on in the middle of a repetitive task to break things up. They might then get caught up in household tasks as they set their eyes on a pile of jumbled clothes or dusty surfaces!

On the other hand, an employee with a tendency to procrastinate or who exhibits difficulties sticking to a schedule, might see their productivity negatively impacted by the lack of incentives and stimulation around them. As a result, if you’re an employer, it might naturally be difficult for you to trust that your employees’ productivity will be the same as if they were in a working environment where distractions are lessened. 

Benefits for Employers and Candidates

While you might be imagining your employees playing Call of Duty, watching an episode of their favourite TV show, or tending to household tasks during working hours, there are ways to track and incentivise them to prevent these behaviours. And the great news is, remote working has also numerous benefits!

Reducing your Costs

Remote working is an excellent way for you to reduce your costs. You’ll be able to save on team bonding events, rent for office space, food, or cleaning services. In fact, some companies such as Shopify or Twitter have already announced their plans to implement permanent home-based work to save on costs. And according to a recent study, employers can save up to £10,000 per employee working from home. 

Attracting People from Everywhere 

Remote working has another significant benefit for companies. Indeed, it allows them to extend their talent pool as they’re no longer constrained to hiring local talent.  

As a result, as an employer looking to recruit talent, remote working opens up new possibilities. You’ll be able to find highly qualified employees and people with specific skill sets without having to settle for the best you can find in your area anymore. 

Whether you decide to bring regional or international talent to your team, you’ll also benefit from their unique vision, cultural experiences, and perspectives. After all, having a multi-cultural team is a great way to encourage team innovation! 

Providing Flexibility for your Employees 

According to a study published by Staples Business Advantage Workplace Index, 22% of employees quit their jobs because of a lack of work-life balance.  

Remote working provides employees with more flexibility and the ability to organise their work around their personal obligations. They can also adjust their surroundings to their own preferences, wear their favourite PJs all day long (this is a major selling point, believe us!), and look after their physical health when they need to.

Finally, it also allows them to save time and money on commuting, enabling them to do what they enjoy instead. 

In a nutshell, working from home is short for flexibility and improved health, and emotional wellbeing for employees. This can, in turn, improve your bottom line by reducing absenteeism and turnover. 

We hope this article was insightful and convinced you that remote working, even though challenging, can also be beneficial to your company!

 

Looking to recruit talent in the IT space? Don’t hesitate to get in touch, as we’d love to assist you!


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