Why Companies Want Remote Work
As international economies attempt to recover from the impacts of the global pandemic, companies are looking at remote work to redefine how the workplace functions. Should employees return to the office as the world reopens? How does hybrid work impact efficiency? Does remote work fit into the company’s culture and plans for the future? Keep reading to find out why companies want remote workers now more than ever.
1. Remote Work Can Save Money
A recent remote work survey conducted by Global Workplace Analytics concluded that companies can save approximately $11,000 per year for each hybrid-work employee1 — that’s an estimated savings of $22,000 per year for companies that allow employees to work from home 100% of the time. In addition to saving money on commercial real estate to house their employees, companies can slash other overhead operating costs such as cleaning and communication services as well.
2. Remote Work Can Be More Eco-Friendly
Research conducted by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) concludes that transportation and electricity are the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions.2 As more companies transition out of the traditional office, our environment can reap the benefits of having fewer vehicles on the road. Experts predict that the decrease in transportation due to remote work and the global reduction of industrial activity will contribute to the largest annual decline in global carbon emissions.3
3. Remote Work Can Promote Diversity
According to a survey conducted by the Becker Friedman Institute on the economic impact of the pandemic, 37% percent of jobs in the United States can be performed completely online4, with variation across industries and geographic locations. However, only 7% of companies leveraged the benefits of this type of work environment prior to the pandemic according to the 2019 National Compensation Survey5 from the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
A major and immediate benefit of hiring remote workers is the increased access to a diverse and global talent pool. In a recent survey of 150+ HR leaders conducted by HR Grapevine6, 75% of the participating HR leaders reported that working remotely improves company culture, workplace diversity, and team dynamics. Opportunities are now exponentially greater to find workers who vary in race, age, ability, and gender identity for companies who log online in lieu of going into an office.
4. Remote Work Can Increase Productivity
In a 2021 survey of 22,500 Americans, Stanford researchers investigated the implications of working from home in a post-Covid world. Their findings7 concluded that working from home offers the potential to raise productivity by 2.7% and that many employees prefer working in their own space versus on company premises7. In a report from the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, researchers determined that the average American commuter wastes 54 hours a year in traffic delays8 which might explain why so many people dread their morning car ride.
Working remotely can free up time and allow workers to focus on what’s really important – reaching their company’s goals. Remote work can also decrease the number of missed days as compared to traditional office work. When remote employees don’t feel well, they can still work (if they choose to) and do so without risking the health of their co-workers or using a sick day over a mild stomach ache.
5. Remote Work Can Reduce Attrition
Owl Labs’ 2019 State of Remote Work report revealed that remote workers are 22% happier and plan to stay with their companies longer than on-site employees.9 91% of respondents in their survey of over 1,200 American workers ages 22-65, listed a better work-life balance as a reason for working remotely. The report also found that remote workers are 13% more likely to stay in their current job for the next five years as compared to onsite workers. For companies looking for a good reason to join the remote workforce, employee loyalty might be worth the transition.
- Latest work-at-home/telecommuting/remote work statistics. Global Workplace Analytics. (2021, October 16). Retrieved November 16, 2021, from https://globalworkplaceanalytics.com/telecommuting-statistics.
2. Environmental Protection Agency. (n.d.). EPA. Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/sources-greenhouse-gas-emissions.
3. Analysis: Coronavirus set to cause largest ever annual fall in CO2 emissions. Carbon Brief. (2021, April 7). Retrieved November 14, 2021, from https://www.carbonbrief.org/analysis-coronavirus-set-to-cause-largest-ever-annual-fall-in-co2-emissions.
4. How many jobs can be done at home? BFI. (2021, February 3). Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://bfi.uchicago.edu/working-paper/how-many-jobs-can-be-done-at-home/.
5. Employee benefits in the United States, March 2019. (n.d.). Retrieved November 14, 2021, from https://www.bls.gov/ncs/ebs/benefits/2019/employee-benefits-in-the-united-states-march-2019.pdf.
6. HR Grapevine. (n.d.). HR survey: Covid-19 and the future of HR (G). turtl.co. Retrieved November 14, 2021, from https://bps-world.turtl.co/story/hr-survey-covid-19-and-the-future-of-hr/page/1.
7. Why working from home will stick – stanford university. (n.d.). Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://nbloom.people.stanford.edu/sites/g/files/sbiybj4746/f/wfh_will_stick_v5.pdf.
8. Willingham, A. J. (2019, August 22). Commuters waste an average of 54 hours a year stalled in traffic, study says. CNN. Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/22/us/traffic-commute-gridlock-transportation-study-trnd/index.html.
9. 2019 state of Remote Work Report. 2019 State of Remote Work Report. (n.d.). Retrieved November 15, 2021, from https://owllabs.com/state-of-remote-work/2019?hs_preview=jWDXIXgj-13385250578.