As we all saw in the past two years, there has been a huge movement towards remote working. Now, most of this was mandated by work from home orders due to the pandemic, but many opted to work from home for safety purposes. Now what we are seeing is those who moved to work from home are staying home. Employers and employees alike are seeing the benefits of working from home. Some are making the move to full remote work where others are exploring the world of flex hours. With this shift, we are seeing a healthier work-life balance, given that you work effectively from home.
As someone who didn’t have much experience working from home, I had a lot to learn and adjust to, really quickly. Early on I saw some of the perks such as; never missing a package, being able to cook food, sleeping in instead of commuting, etc. But once the honeymoon phase subsided I found myself struggling with my productivity and succumbed to distractions and lack of motivation. It can be difficult to stay positive and motivated when you haven’t left your apartment (in my case) in days. That’s when I had to look for external help to find a new routine working from home with tips and tricks. Now that I have been doing this for a while and so have many others, it is important to see the stats from remote work and learn from them.
Preparing For Remote Work
There may be a lot of skepticism when approaching remote work. I know when I first considered working from home I was excited about the idea of it but also nervous about my productivity. Living in a small apartment there are not many places you can escape from the distractions, so I knew I had to be on top of myself to ensure I stayed focused. At first, I worked from the couch and occasionally moved to the bar table to stand. But quickly I found myself becoming distracted or becoming stir crazy as there were few times I could leave the apartment due to the pandemic. In a normal environment, you can go meet friends, go to the gym, etc. (all very important when you are able to!).
This also is dependent on your personality and how you like to work. I have always liked to work on-site, whether it is in the office, at the school, etc. I find I need to immerse myself in my work and environment in order to squeeze all the productivity I have out of me. This may not be applicable to you. But being prepared, having a routine, and having a dedicated space you feel comfortable working in is universal. These stats may help you whether you are an employee or an employer. This way you can see how employees and employers address remote work and can have realistic expectations.
Remote Working Stats
- In the United States, Over 3% of the workforce (approx. 3.4% of the workforce) worked from home at least half the week.
- Over the last 5 years, remote work has grown by over 40%.
- 18% of executives work remotely more than on-site.
- Over 70% of on-site workers have held their position for less than a year.
- The number of people who work remotely at least once a week has grown over 400% since 2010.
- If they could, over 90% of people would choose to work remotely, at least part-time.
- Over 90% of people would encourage their friends and family to work remotely.
- 83% of workers (remote or on-site) say that a remote work opportunity would make them feel happier in their job.
- 40% of people say that a flexible schedule would be the best perk of working remotely.
- Over 80% of employees say that having an option to work remotely would make them more likely to recommend their company to job candidates.
- Over 70% of employees say that having a remote work option would make them less likely to leave their job.
Remote Working Productivity and Behaviours
- Over 75% of remote employees say they are more productive when working from home.
- Over 75% prefer to avoid their office completely when they are focusing on a project.
- 23% of remote workers say that they work longer hours when working remotely than they do on-site.
- 53% of workers say they would be less likely to take time off if they worked from home rather than on-site.
- Although remote work enables you to work from anywhere, 84% of remote employees prefer to work from home.
Earnings and Benefits for Remote Work
- 69% of millennials will trade their other work benefits for flexible work options including remote work.
- 75% of people say that their companies will not compensate for the internet if they work from home.
- Businesses would save an average of $11,000 annually per half-time telecommuter.
Remote Working Challenges
- More than half of remote employees say that they feel disconnected from in-office employees.
- 22% of remote employees report that unplugging after working hours is their biggest challenge.
- 19% of remote employees report that loneliness is their biggest challenge.
Navigating The New Road
Whether you are considering your first remote position or you have been “forced” into a remote position due to the current global landscape, it is important to keep the stats above in mind. As the world continues to evolve it is important to embrace flexibility and stay ahead of the curve. If you have the ability to ease into flexible work hours or move to remote work 1-3 times a week and grow into it, it will be easiest to adjust to the role. It is important to have a dedicated workspace where you only go to work. If you use a couch or a communal space where there are distractions it will be difficult to focus on work and not become distracted. By having space you only use for work it will be easier to get into a working routine when you enter this space.