Remote Working is the Future. Are You Ready for It?
If you’re one of the millions of Americans and others around the globe who have been converted from in-house to remote positions, you will know the numerous benefits attached to the freedom of choosing where you work. But if you’re yet to experience working out of the office and in the comfort of your own home, you should prepare yourself for the future. The future is remote working and more and more companies are embracing the fact.
There are many upsides to working remotely. One which might pop up in your mind right away is the cost benefit to the employer and freedom of workspace to the employee. While they are associated as the highest two benefits of changing to remote working, they are just a drop in the ocean.
The Indeed Job Happiness Index of 2016 pointed out that work-life balance was the #1 contributor to overall job satisfaction. Not only in the United States, but around the world. It was seen as the biggest factor in what made employees happy and willing to stay with their current employers for the long haul.
It’s known that as of 2012, one in five workers worldwide have already gone remote. Interestingly, the business world is coming to that realization quite quickly as well. Executives, business academia and entrepreneurs at the London Business School’s Global Leadership Summit believed that half of the entire workforce may be ‘out of the office’ as soon as 2020. That’s not too far away now.
“Technology and some fundamental shifts in management thinking are behind this response,” suggested Adam Kingl, London Business School’s Director of Learning Solutions, Executive Education at the summit. “Leaders are learning how to enable their teams to flourish, and there is a recognition that the notion of a traditional 9-5, Monday-Friday, commute-to-the-office job is quickly eroding. There is, though, an equally strong case for bringing teams together on a regular basis to inspire and to share.”
There is a real good chance that your position may be considered a good fit to be made remote. This can be especially true if you are a programmer, graphic designer or customer sales and support professional. Even though there are several other industries which are and have already gone remote, the ones which require you to be on a computer for most of the day are always the ones to get the remote tag first.
The thought of being remote may have your mind wandering off to Netflix binging or just hanging out more with family and friends. While you will definitely be able to create a better life-work balance by saving a lot of time, there are still some considerations before the big day comes.
How You Can Get Ready to Be a Remote Worker
You are right to think that not having to spend an hour on getting ready, eating breakfast and another hour getting to work will give you a lot more time. Especially that commute back during rush hour, too! Even though you will technically be saving three to four hours on average, it doesn’t always help.
The reason for that is most people fall into a routine when they have to get to work at a certain time. Employees who are usually late, are always late no matter how much of a cushion they get from their employer. This is usually why human resource teams stick to strict timings for everyone to keep it fair and balanced.
Maintain a Routine
Knowing that you’re at home and don’t have an alarm going off in the morning is such a great feeling. Unfortunately for many people who become remote workers, that means they struggle the rest of the day to set a schedule and stick to it.
Life can get real complicated really fast if you don’t maintain a routine even though you are working remotely. The good thing is that if you have been more keen on working out in the afternoons or later in the evening or during the nights, you now may have the freedom to do that. Just make sure you have a schedule laid out and are able to easily adapt to it.
Some remote workers even choose to have a separate room in their house dedicated as an office. They still get up early, shower and get ready as if they were going to a corporate office. This helps maintain not only their routines, but also the mindset of knowing when to work and when not to.
Not managing time and being able to handle the workload when no one is watching over you can get stressful and eventually burn you out as you struggle to juggle the freedom and requirement to work.
Learn to Communicate More Efficiently via Technology
You won’t have the liberty to just stop by someone’s cubicle anymore to discuss something for the latest report that due in a few days. It is going to be just you, your smartphone and computer. Take some time out to figure which apps and software are commonly used for team collaboration and communication.
Some teams use Slack to collaborate while others might be able to do it using Facebook for Business or even just a WhatsApp group. Being familiar with the most used platforms will help ease the transition from office to home because communication is key to any project success when you’re a remote work.
It was a lot easier when you were able to book the conference room at work to call in all the relevant people for an hour-long discussion. Now you have to do that through your laptop or smartphone and not everyone is always going to be on the same schedule as you are.
Becoming a remote work is great. You have total control of your situation and if done right, you’ll end up loving work instead of dreading it. Remote workers are known to have better morale and are happier than employees stuck in a cubicle. Who wouldn’t love being able to do anything and go anywhere knowing that they can finish up a little later or take it along with them?