More and more SMBs are going remote. No question about it. A recent Skype survey showed that on average nearly 62 percent of the companies surveyed allow employees to work offsite. The survey also showed that 56% of the managers surveyed believed remote workers were more productive, while 75% believed working remotely is becoming more accepted.
With numbers like these, you’d think every manager would be jumping on the bandwagon.
Yet many managers are still reluctant to go remote.
Make no mistake. Managing a remote workforce is a challenge.
But the benefits from going remote make an impact.
If you’re one of the managers that are undecided about having remote workers, we’ve listed 8 benefits below that may help you decide:
It costs between $10,000 and $20,000 per year to house an employee in a major city. Meanwhile, it costs between $6,000 and $10,000 per year in a smaller city. Moving the employee to a remote site or home office can cut costs dramatically—even when you figure in the related IT costs.
Increases Employee Retention
Many employees want to work at home. One survey says that as many as 36% of employees would trade a raise for the ability to work from home. A similar number said they would take a 10% decrease in pay to work at home. Going remote keeps employees happy and happy employees stick around.
Increases Agility With Remote Workers
By going remote you no longer need to require employees to move to where their bosses are located. Just because you now report to someone in New York City doesn’t mean you have to move there. Going remote also eliminates the need for key people to relocate because of organizational changes.
Makes It Easier To Scale With Remote Workers
Adding employees remotely means you no longer have to create space for those additions at a home office. Or work in an overcrowded environment until you find space that’s big enough to hold everyone. You can add—or subtract—employees quickly and easily, saving time and money.
Hire The Best Staff Available
Going remote means you have your pick of the best talent out there. You no longer need to hire based on geography or technological limitations. You can hire from anywhere in the world. This benefit is especially appealing if you’re not located in a large metropolitan area where more talent is readily available.
Have Happier More Productive Employees
Employees are happier when they can work from home or in a more convenient place. There is any number of reasons why this may be—no commuting, more family time, a more flexible schedule, the ability to create your own environment, and so on. Happier employees are more productive employees.
Extends Service Hours
Having a remote workforce is a simple way to increase the workday and extend service hours. It’s also cost-effective. With the right CRM tools, you can extend seamless customer support to any place in the world at any time without the need for a second shift.
Expand Your Perspective
Adding employees from different geographic areas can add “perspective” to your organization. They can help you understand pricing norms, local cultures, consumer preferences, or holiday patterns that can impact your business.
In addition to providing these eight benefits, going remote offers you one other benefit—increased flexibility. Increased flexibility lets you quickly respond to unforeseen organizational changes.
Of course, hiring remote workers has its challenges. For example, remote workers require more energy to retain. They also may not have access to all the software and hardware solutions that an on-site employee has at the home office.
But when all is said and done, the upside of having a remote workforce far outweighs the downside.
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