Remote Working Existed Prior to the Pandemic – It Was Just Required to be Utilized
The pandemic has compelled many companies to embrace remote working in order to keep business operations running while maintaining the safety of their employees. Many workers had their reservations prior to the pandemic, citing concerns about being able to work efficiently without being in an office environment. Nevertheless, remote working has a long history and was employed by businesses prior to the pandemic.
The Dawn of Remote Working
Remote working is not a new concept. In the late 90s and early 2000s, telecommunications firms provided workers with laptops and internet access to work remotely from locations other than the office. This opportunity allowed workers to stay home or work from a coffee shop, which was more appealing than commuting to the office daily. Subsequent technological advances created cloud technology, video conferencing, and telepresence, paving the way for working remotely and even working globally.
The Cost of Not Embracing Remote Working
Before the pandemic, some businesses were resistant to remote working due to a lack of trust of their employees; however, failing to embrace remote working can be costly in several ways. A recent study by Global Workplace Analytics stated that employees would opt for lower pay to have the option to work remotely. Additionally, employees who are non-remote workers incur long commute hours, which raises health, environmental, and economic issues. Lastly, businesses that do not embrace remote working, lose out on top talent.
The Benefits of Remote Working
Remote working has many benefits for both employees and businesses and is not just limited to the pandemic. Employees have the flexibility to work according to their schedule, avoiding commuting-related stress, which, in turn, reduces absenteeism. Remote working helps improve work-life balance as workers can be at home to attend to family needs, and is particularly useful for individuals with disabilities who may find it difficult to commute. Businesses benefit from remote working by reducing real estate costs, lowering utility bills, and diminishing the environmental impact of commuting.
Remote working not only existed before the pandemic but was crucial for economic growth. By embracing remote working, businesses can open doors for employees to work according to their terms and experience a higher quality of life, while also creating a more competitive workforce. Remote working is not only a solution in times of crises but also a long-term solution for stress-free and productive work.
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