Mademoiselle Sarah Hallowell, Mary Louise Fairchild
Is the battle for work approaches already decided? Absolutely! In this article, we not only reveal the winner (although you probably already have a hunch) but also delve into why this particular approach triumphed and how to take its side not to be left aside from progress.
Drum roll, please and… remote work emerges as the undeniable champion, securing a resounding victory. The numbers speak for themselves, showcasing the overwhelming support for this work style:
98% of employees strongly desire remote work (Buffer);
65% are willing to accept a pay cut for the privilege of working remotely (Breeze);
63% admit they would actively seek new job opportunities if remote work is not offered (Remote.co).
And it’s not just employees who embrace this trend. A remarkable 83% of employers intend to incorporate remote work as a vital component of their workforce strategy. Moreover, 73% predict that at least a quarter of their employees will be working from home in the near future, while a third believe that half of their entire staff will join the ranks of remote workers (CNN).
Such unanimity is rare, but the reasons behind it are crystal clear. The fears and risks associated with remote work have proven to be exaggerated. Company executives report that productivity remains on par (63%) or even improves, 27% of managers agree when working remotely (Flexjobs). Though, for remote workers, it is unsurprising – they have long known that they can achieve greater efficiency from the comfort of their homes, even predating the pandemic (CoSo Cloud). Yet, their claims went largely unheard.
In addition, 60% of managers have acknowledged the significant cost savings associated with this work format. Full-time remote work in the United States leads to an average annual real estate savings of $10,000 per employee. A shining example is IBM, which has slashed real estate costs by a staggering $50 million through the implementation of remote work (Global Workplace Analytics).
Notably, saving money holds immense importance for employees as well. By eliminating the daily commute, the average American worker saves 408 hours and $4,523 annually. It’s like gaining a 17-day paid vacation, all without any expense to their employer!
Flexible and more convenient individual work schedule;
Less pressure from formal and informal relationships;
Possibility to find work across the country and even worldwide without the need to move.
Wider opportunities for hiring employees, managing personnel and workflow in general;
Extension of the working day: employees who prefer to work early or late in the evening can be helpful for various tasks. Also, time-saving includes the almost complete disappearance of employee lateness.
More productive work meetings and conferences, which are easier to organize and conduct remotely;
Very little loss of working time for informal communication. In office work, such losses average half an hour daily (Airtasker).
And for both categories, there are significant savings in money, time, and effort.
Obviously, challenges may arise in remote and hybrid work, but these obstacles primarily stem from individuals struggling to adapt to new ways of working—an inevitable side effect of progress.
Understanding that these challenges are not inherent to remote work but rather the resistance to change within certain mindsets is crucial.
Managers, in particular, face concerns regarding monitoring employee activities during work hours and maintaining a cohesive corporate culture. Some yearn for a return to the old normal once the pandemic subsides. However, it’s time to break free from the industrial-era mentality that modeled offices after factories and structured with military-like discipline. Embracing the current reality requires recognizing the shifting times. Today, employees and employers seek more flexible relationships, transcending the outdated notion of lifelong employment with a single company.
To truly thrive in this new landscape, it’s imperative to shed these prejudices. The demand for remote work predates the COVID-19 pandemic; it merely accelerated an already burgeoning trend. Multiple factors influence the shift towards remote collaboration, including the next wave of digital advancements driven by artificial intelligence and robotics.
The World Economic Forum forecasts a global job reduction of 14 million positions over the next five years—2% of all existing jobs. Routine mechanical tasks and roles in accounting, secretarial work, low-level cashiering, banking, and clerical positions will be significantly affected. In essence, tasks that cost-effective robots or artificial intelligence systems can automate.
Consider this: do humans truly need to offer bank deposit options, drive vehicles, curate product recommendations, or conduct basic online presentations? The rise of AI assistants and cutting-edge technology won’t lead to job losses for those who adapt. However, those who fail to learn to work with these technologies may be left behind. The time to construct or rebuild your business is now—freeing it from reliance on traditional offices and professions disconnected from genuinely creative work.
Your focus should be recruiting creative talents who can swiftly navigate diverse tasks, embrace new concepts, and harness novel tools. Invest resources and time into updating your solutions and products based on the latest scientific breakthroughs. This proactive approach holds the key to success—not confining your workforce to cubicles occupied by outdated calculators and arithmetic operators.
Embrace the remote work revolution, seize the opportunities, and forge a path toward sustainable growth. Adaptability and innovation will propel your business to new heights, ensuring a thriving future in the ever-evolving work landscape.
Good luck to everyone and high incomes!
Andrei Tkachenko for ROI4Presenter