djile / Shutterstock.com
This story originally appeared on FlexJobs.com.
When COVID-19 forced companies around the world to virtually send their employees home to work, remote working had a big moment.
Yes, the rush to give employees access to all the tools they need to work from home was a bit sudden for many employers. After everyone settled in, many office teams quickly realized that employees can be productive and focused when they are not in the office – in many cases even more so. Employers everywhere began to understand that remote working really works.
What will the future of remote work look like in a post-pandemic world? Will companies go back to business as usual and require everyone to work locally, or is the pandemic the turning point that will finally convince employers that flexible working is the way to go in the long run?
Whether you're looking for a remote job or already working virtually, check out this list of the best perks of working from home.
1. Better work-life balance
Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com
Many remote jobs also have flexible schedules, so employees can start and end their day as they please, as long as their job is done and producing strong results. This control over your work schedule can be invaluable when it comes to addressing the needs of your personal life.
Whether it is balancing school schedules, medical appointments, and errands, taking an online fitness class in the morning, or even being at home for a contractor, everything can be done a little easier when you work from home .
2. Less commuting stress
Hayk_Shalunts / Shutterstock.com
The average one-way commute time in the US is 27.1 minutes – that's nearly an hour a day to get to and from work, and that really adds up. According to the Auto Insurance Center, commuters spend about 100 hours commuting and 41 hours in traffic each year. Some “extreme” commuters have much longer commute times of 90 minutes or more each way.
However, wasting time commuting is just one of the downsides of getting to and from work. Commuting more than 30 minutes a day in one direction is associated with increased levels of stress and anxiety. Research shows that commuting 10 miles to work every day is linked to health problems such as:
- Higher cholesterol
- Increased blood sugar
- Increased risk of depression
Giving up the commute can benefit your mental and physical health. The time saved allows you to focus on priorities outside of work, such as: B. extra sleep in the morning, spending more time with the family, exercising or eating a healthy breakfast.
3. Location independence
Pavel Ilyukhin / Shutterstock.com
One of the significant benefits of working from home is access to a wider range of job opportunities that are not limited by geographic location. This can be especially useful for job seekers who live in rural communities and small towns that may not have many local jobs available.
In the absence of a job set, even fully remote workers prior to the pandemic can travel and live as digital nomads while they still have significant careers. Currently, this type of working arrangement is likely to be difficult due to travel and quarantine restrictions. But there is definitely a benefit when things open up again.
People who have to move frequently, such as Military spouses such as military spouses can also benefit from remote work that can be done from anywhere without having to start over at the end of a new business each time they move.
Additionally, remote working is a great way to avoid high rent and high mortgage areas, especially for positions (like tech) that used to involve living in a high cost of living city. With Remote Work, you no longer have to live near a large metropolitan area to have a career you love.
4. Improved inclusivity
fizkes / Shutterstock.com
Remote working enables companies to promote diversity and inclusion by employing people from different socio-economic, geographic and cultural backgrounds and with different perspectives. This can be tricky when recruiting is limited to a specific locale that not everyone wants or can afford to live nearby.
By hiring people who can work from home in the communities where they feel most comfortable and most supported, companies choose to support diversity, community and family.
Remote working also gives people who may have difficulty finding permanent on-site employment, such as people with disabilities or caregivers who need a flexible schedule, the opportunity to pursue their career goals without worrying about the back and forth need an office and with the flexibility to get to doctor and other health appointments when needed.
5. Saving money
Jason Stitt / Shutterstock.com
People who work from home halfway can save between $ 2,000 and $ 6,500 a year. Gasoline, car maintenance, transportation, parking fees, a professional wardrobe, store-bought lunches, and more can all be reduced or eliminated from your expenses. These savings add up and put more money back in your pocket.
And the savings aren't just for employees. As more companies allow employees to continue working from home after the pandemic – like Twitter, Square, Shopify, and Facebook, to name a few – they will see significant cost savings in the long term too.
According to Global Workplace Analytics, a typical company can save around $ 11,000 a year for every employee who works from home at least part of the time. In fact, FlexJobs saved more than $ 5 million working remotely on:
- Real estate costs
- Transit subsidies
- Business continuity
During the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. employers are saving over $ 30 billion a day by allowing employees to work from home. This great economic benefit of remote working could continue as more companies make it a long-term solution.
6. Positive environmental impact
theskaman306 / Shutterstock.com
The 3.9 million employees, at least half of whom work from home, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of more than 600,000 cars taken off the road for a year. This comes from the report "State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce ”. For those who work at least part-time from home, they don't cover a whopping 7.8 billion vehicle miles every year, 3 million tons of greenhouse gases are avoided, and oil savings reach $ 980 million.
By making green choices – like using less paper and monitoring air conditioning, heating, and lighting – remote workers have the same potential air quality impact as planting an entire forest of 91 million trees.
7. Impact on sustainability
Paul Aiken / Shutterstock.com
Remote working supports a variety of sustainability initiatives, from economic growth and reduced inequalities to sustainable cities, climate change and responsible consumption.
One of the fastest and cheapest ways for employers and employees to reduce their carbon footprint and influence climate change is to reduce commuting. Indeed, even during the pandemic response, the world is seeing significantly reduced pollution, congestion, and traffic, and being able to experience the results firsthand can be a driver of remote working for everyone involved.
8. A customizable office
Evgeny Atamanenko / Shutterstock.com
The ability to create a comfortable home office is a great benefit of working remotely. Whether you just want a more ergonomic chair or have health issues that mean you need specialized office equipment, you can set up your home office and customize it the way you want.
9. Increased productivity and performance
belefront / Shutterstock.com
FlexJobs' annual survey in 2019 found that 65% of professionals think they would be more productive remotely than in a traditional office. 49% say they go to their home or home office when they really need to buckle up and get their work done.
Working from home usually results in fewer interruptions, less office politics, lower noise levels, and fewer – or more efficient – meetings. Since there is no commuting, remote workers tend to have more time and fewer distractions, resulting in higher productivity – a huge benefit of working from home for employees and employers alike.
When done right, working remotely allows employees and organizations to focus on what really matters – performance. Unfortunately, the office environment can generate “false positives” that can lead to bias and preference. Arriving early and leaving late may look like more work, but actual performance is a much better indicator of productivity.
Gallup reported that 60% of U.S. workers who worked from home during the pandemic would prefer to work remotely as much as possible in the future.
10. A happier and healthier working life
Olena Yakobchuk / Shutterstock.com
Remote, flexible employees tend to be happier, more loyal employees, partly because working from home has been shown to be less stressful, more time devoted to hobbies and interests, and among other things, it improves personal relationships.
In addition to personal health and well-being, relationships between employees and managers can be more positive without the distractions and politics that come with an in-office job. According to reports, 72% of employers say remote working has a huge impact on employee retention. Put simply, employees stay with their employer when they have remote working options.
Working from home can lead to better health in a number of ways: more time for physical activity, the ability to eat healthier, the ability to recover from illness or surgery at home, less exposure to illness, care to ease a health problem or disability and the option to create a comfortable and ergonomic work area.
While the pandemic may have triggered remote working for many millions of employees around the world, it is nowhere near the only reason to work from home. Indeed, the benefits of working from home are impacting so many things on a global scale that it is sure to become the best way forward.
Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, sometimes we get compensation for clicking links in our stories.