Five tips for ensuring that Home-Working benefits your business
Implement home working correctly and it can turn into a win-win for you and your team. It is all summed up brilliantly in the following: “Work is something you do, not something you have to travel to.”
Following a recent heated debate in our office on the benefits of working from home and also whether it was relevant, I decided I needed to re-iterate the benefits, not only for a company but also for its employees.
I have worked from home for many years, and am a firm believer in the fact that home workers toil harder and longer than office workers. My colleague disagrees and argues that he is easily distracted and ‘loses the plot’ without the discipline of an office environment. So what I am going to prove beyond doubt is that homeworking is a benefit to the business.
Recent research conducted at Brigham Young University has delved into data from over 20,000 IBM employees across 75 countries, with surprising results. Employees who telecommute not only balance work and personal life better than ‘standard’ office workers, but balance it AND manage more hours!.
The key benefits outlined in the report are:
- Diminished office costs. As you grow you don’t need to expand your fixed cost base in the office, floor space, desks, chairs, computer hardware etc.
- Lower travel costs. A major benefit not only to the worker and the company, but of course to the environment as well.
- A larger workforce talent pool to pick from (i.e. flexi-time and home working enable carers, parents and disabled people to be employed more easily). This is an often overlooked benefit of home-working.
- Reduced absenteeism.Couple this with higher employee satisfaction and it is hard to see a downside, but they do exist!
My colleague’s very valid concerns are:
Allowing staff flexi-time - This is crucial if employees are to see a benefit from home-working. Without this flexibility in working hours the pluses of home-working are removed and you are simply replacing the effort of getting to work at a set hour, by getting to a place of your own choice on time.Continued on the next page