Is Telecommuting Right For Your Business?

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We are becoming more and more a virtual world but does teleworking fit for you and your company?  Here are some things to consider:

Benefits:

  • You save office space, utility costs, parking. Studies show companies saved $2,000 to $10,000 per employee per year.

  • You can get a great employee who is not in your location.

  • Fewer distractions from other employees.  Several studies provides evidence of 15% to 45% gains in productivity when employees work from home.

  • Greater employee retention and engagement because they have a better work-life balance.  Greater engagement leads to increases in revenue, profitability and efficiency.  Better retention reduces training costs.

Cons

  • Employees experience issues with work/personal boundaries.  Transitioning between parent and employee can be confusing for family members causing multiple interruptions.

  • Employees are not as able to develop trust and support from others with whom they do not socialize. Those who work from home may forego important collaborative opportunities that occur during social activities and networking events.

  • Employees experience less creativity due to lack of collaboration.  Research on creativity has found that certain moments of brilliance are sparked by unexpected conversations, such as while grabbing a cup of coffee with a colleague.

  • Additional costs to maintain network privacy and security loss. 

Another concern I have heard is: “I don’t know whether they are working or not.”  This is a trust issue based on actually seeing your employees at work.  This is a paradigm shift which you will need to make if you embark on telecommuting.  I generally suggest you set up goals and a system to measure accountability to help you feel more comfortable.