According to information from the American Community Survey, 3.2 million Americans in the labor force work remotely. Flexible workers find that there are many benefits, including the ability to choose working hours and a reduction of office costs. A study of over 2,000 flexible working adults by PowWowNow found that offices were spending $90 a week on meetings, totaling more than $4,700 a year.
Remote working can also help offices save money in other ways. During the recent harsh winter, federal employees who worked from home during official snow days saved the government an estimated $32 million, Global Workplace Analytics president Kate Lister told The New York Times. Companies can also cut costs by reducing office space when employees work remotely. A study by Stanford University professor Nicholas Bloom discovered that businesses could save $2,000 per employee annually by decreasing the amount of office space leased and allowing employees to work from home.
Remote working also offers employees greater flexibility, which is recognized as a major benefit. According to the PowWowNow survey, employees spent 6 hours per person traveling for work each week, time that was gladly spent on other things with the ability to work remotely. Flexible working offers the ability to continue to work on days when employees may have otherwise had to take a vacation day, such as a sick child staying home from school or waiting for a maintenance man to come to the house.
The added flexibility of working remotely reduces stress and increases productivity. The Stanford University study found that remote employees worked 9.5 percent longer and were 13 percent more productive than workers from the same company who stayed in the office. Remote workers were also found to be happier, as their retention rate was double that of other employees.
Make the most of remote working with the cloud
Companies hoping to introduce a flexible working policy can do so by implementing a cloud platform. Cloud services allow for easier remote access to enterprise information and fosters a more innovative and collaborative environment among employees. A dedicated enterprise cloud platform enables workers to conduct business from wherever is most convenient for them, be it their living room, a coffee shop or even a plane. As companies continue to modernize, remote working will becoming increasingly popular, and cloud platforms make flexible working policies easier to implement.