“I would drape myself in velvet if it were socially acceptable.” This famous line from Seinfled is something many of us relate to. We all have a favorite set of clothes that we love to wear around the house but can’t take outside because of society. But what if you could work in those clothes? You know: carry out the usual office duties, but without actually heading to the office.
Working from home sounds like a luxury few people can afford. We imagine sending emails from the comfort of a big armchair, the house drenched in aroma coming from incense sticks and fresh coffee, us sprawled on a massive sofa all swathed in silk. You’d be surprised to learn that you’re closer than ever to this dream. That is, if your employer keeps close tabs on the trends.
More productive at home than in the office
Of the nearly four in 10 people who say they work remotely a couple of times monthly, 77 percent say their productivity is actually greater than when they’re in the office, according to a recent survey from ConnectSolutions. What’s more, three in 10 remote workers say they can accomplish more in less time (I wonder if these people have pets. Or kids.).
The technology available to modern telecommuters – smartphone, tablet, laptop, desktop PC – knocks down any former stigmas associated with remote working. Collaboration software enables remote workers to gain the same operability as in the office. Plus, there’s the often overlooked advantage of being able to work from any location where there’s internet. You don’t want to ruin your vacation like that, but the option is on the table for workaholics.
Analyze your benefits, poll your staff
Today, remote workers can leverage Unified Communications (UC) features like instant messaging from their personal devices by way of a virtual office communication system. This enables them to collaborate with colleagues just like in the office. They simply launch a virtual workspace from their preferred device and gain access to a wealth of tools that provide ties to fellow office workers and other remote workers.
Things like Find Me/Follow Me or voicemail to email can augment the staffer’s ability to produce more work while away from the office. For instance, Find Me/Follow Me will transfer calls made to a remote worker’s designated office phone straight to their mobile phone when they are working at home.In case a voicemail is left on an employee’s office phone, the message will be sent as an audio file via email.
Remote workers can serve as a substantial asset to your workforce, as long as you equip them with the right collaboration software. As a manager, your only job is know what your business needs / lacks at all times. If your people say they wouldn’t mind working out of their homes for a change, maybe it’s time you gave them a listen. Employee morale is as important as the equipment you invest in.