5 Big Benefits of a Remote Workforce

On the fence about remote work? We detail five reasons it’s worth pursuing 

In a highly competitive global economy, working smarter often means leveraging the manifold benefits of a remote workforce. Whether you’ve been toying with this idea as a way to save your company big bucks, or your employees have been clamoring for you to add this option to your current lineup of perks, there’s much to gain from letting folks work from home, Starbucks, the airport, or wherever their Wi-Fi connections take them. Moreover, easy-to-use, cost-effective technology solutions, (like Highfive video conferencing), make empowering employees to work remotely a fairly quick and painless process for everyone involved. To learn more about how a remote workforce can positively impact your business, check out our list of the top five benefits of remote workers below.

#1: Increased Productivity

One of the strongest arguments for incorporating remote workers into your workplace routine is all the research that points to major increases in productivity. A lot of companies are discovering that their remote teams not only get more done, they are willing to go the extra mile in exchange for the privilege of working from wherever they wish. One recent study found that 53 percent of remote employees say they are willing to work overtime, compared to only 28 percent of on-site employees. This same survey also found that:

  • 45% of home workers report they are able to work smarter (get more done in less time)
  • 44% say they are less distracted and accomplish more than in the office
  • 90% of managers report employees are more productive when given the flexibility to choose when and how they work

#2: Reduced Turnover

Who knew that sending workers home is one of the best ways to keep them around for years to come? Today, a growing number of companies are using remote work options as a desirable perk that helps them to retain top talent. A national U.S. survey found that 73 percent of remote workers report higher satisfaction with their jobs. In addition, 53% of remote workers in the U.S. report that they are NOT considering leaving their jobs in the next year, whereas 54% of in-house employees are looking for a new place to work. Other compelling statistics that show employees are willing to stay with organizations that enable them to work remotely include:

  • 82% of employees say they would be more loyal to employers that offer flexible work options
  • 95% of employers say remote work has had a major impact on their employee retention
  • 39% of employees have not taken a new job or have quit a job due to inflexible work options

 #3: Increased Savings

Empowering workers to engage in remote work saves both the company and employees a significant amount of money. As for companies, savings come in the form of less money spent on office real estate, furniture, janitorial services, electricity, and other overhead costs. Additionally, one of the benefits of remote workers is that companies are able to reduce spending on the purchase and maintenance of technology. Remote workers can use their own devices, manage projects through cloud-based software, and connect face-to-face to collaborate with fellow employees anytime, anywhere using affordable video conferencing solutions like Highfive, which features HD video and audio to create a dynamic and interactive experience.

As for employees, Inc. Magazine reports that remote employees save between $2,000 and $7,000 per year on transportation, clothes, food, and child-care, than those employees who are office-bound.

Global Workplace Analytics reports that if 50 percent of the U.S. workforce worked from home half of the time, the savings would be over $700 billion a year.  Here is their breakdown of that figure:

  • Businesses would save over $500 billion annually in real estate, electricity, absenteeism, and turnover, or approximately $11,000 per employee
  • National productivity would increase by five-million man-hours, or about $270 billion
  • Remote employees would save two billion gallons of gas by commuting less, which equals 37% of US Persian Gulf imports

#4: Increased Wellness

A major benefit of a remote workforce is that it allows your company to breeze through cold and flu season with significantly less absences. After all, when you’re telecommuting via video conference, you don’t have to hold your breath whenever anyone on your team coughs or sneezes because there’s zero chance of people spreading germs to one another.  In fact, the federal government requires all of its workers to telecommute as much as possible because it ensures continuity of operations in the event of a pandemic or disaster. People who work from home also enjoy lower levels of stress and increased work/life balance, which enables them to spend more time being productive and less time taking off from work to go to the doctor. According to research:

  • 75% of remote workers say they could continue to work in the event of flu, terrorism, roadway problems, and weather-related disasters, compared to 28% of non-teleworkers
  • Unscheduled absences cost U.S. companies over $300 billion a year, or $1,800 per employee
  • Companies with remote work options report 63% fewer unscheduled absences

#5: Easier Access to Top Talent

Hiring only talent in your geographical area greatly limits your options, which is why so many HR managers are using video conferencing to find top talent outside of the company commuting radius. When you are open to employing remote workers, you open your company up to the opportunity to have the best and the brightest join your team for much less than you would spend to hire someone in-house. Many companies have found a flexible workforce to be a scalable solution that empowers them to stay on-budget during busy and slow times and avoid overstaffing and layoffs. Plus, for those companies worried about the impending brain-drain caused by retiring Boomers, 75 percent of this generation maintains they would continue to work if the flexibility to work remotely was available. Other statistics that reveal how remote work options impact the talent pool, include:

  • 70% of employees say the ability to work remotely will be important in choosing their next job
  • Notoriously hard-to-recruit (and retain) Millennials rate flexible work arrangements as an 8 on a scale of 10 for impact on job satisfaction
  • 36% of employees would choose remote work options over a raise

Go Remote With Highfive

Seizing the benefits of remote workers is easy to do with Highfive’s all-in-one video conferencing devices. Featuring HD video and audio, as well as Dolby Voice technology, Highfive makes connecting face-to-face to communicate, collaborate, share slides, and more, a fun and engaging process. Priced at a fraction of the cost of traditional systems, Highfive allows anyone using any device to work remotely. To give your team the home-field advantage, give them all a Highfive.

By Sara Moseley