There was a time, not so long ago, when the phrase “I’m working from home tomorrow” would be greeted by co-workers with a raised eyebrow or an unsubtle roll of the eyes.
In other words, the assumption from those toiling at their desks was that anyone working away the office wasn’t really working at all.
The default mindset was simple: you do your hard yards at the office.
You show your drive and determination to get the job done in the fishbowl of your work surroundings. This was the only place to do your face-to-face and pile into your paperwork. But things have changed. In recent years, both behaviour and opinion have undergone a radical reassessment. Tech and connectivity have played a huge part in this.
Digital transformation has created a new dynamic between business, customers and staff. Cloud services, video conferencing and smartphones have made location almost irrelevant. To the point where research shows that home workers now outperform those tethered to their work cubicles. In a way, It seems counter-intuitive.
After all, isn’t the workplace where collaboration accelerates innovation? Where teamwork creates efficiency? Where the guiding hand of management can nurture and inspire?
And what of businesses who invest time and money creating environments to engender employee success? Those swanky meeting rooms, those constantly-topped-up fruit bowls, that shiny, new table tennis table?
The qualitative and quantitative research screams that the modern office is no longer the powerhouse of productivity it once was. Rather it’s become a hotspot of inefficiency, distraction and discontent.
Those businesses who stubbornly insist that the workplace is the only place for work are falling behind their more progressive competitors who embrace the “I can be aware” approach to getting the job done.
So what’s the appeal of remote working? And why has its star risen so rapidly in recent times?
In 2017 a survey conducted by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) found that more than 1.8 million people solely worked at home in the UK. A further 2.8 million worked in different places but still kept their home as a base. These employees tend to be older and highly skilled.
In 2014, ONS researchers found that of the more than four million remote workers in the UK, 14.8% were working as managers or senior officials, 35.2% were professionals or associate professionals and a further 23.5% were working within skilled trades.
Essentially remote working offers a practical, sensible solution to the demands of modern life.
We believe in the same thing: we are time poor, we’re under pressure.
We chant the same mantra: there must be a better way than the archetypal nine-to-five (more like eight-till-seven) routine.
Therefore remote working makes perfect sense. If you have the technology and the communication tools to execute your work from a location that suits you, why ever would you head to a centralised office?
You can save yourself a wealth of time. No commuting. No frittering away hours in marathon meetings that meaninglessly meander on.
As a remote worker, you can interweave your tasks and deadlines with the necessities of your daily routine.
Suddenly office life seems outmoded and old-fashioned; a tiresome pursuit bereft of freedom, flexibility and flair.
And then we come to a recent, ever-growing phenomenon: the digital nomad. This takes work to the next level.
It’s not a matter of shall I work in the office or at home. It’s a case of which coffee shop, community or country should I base myself in over the next few days, weeks and months.
This is radical. This is life-affirming. This is a case of not just throwing off the shackles, but melting them down and turning them into a champagne chalice collection.
The smart business knows the way to get more from staff is to let them off the leash. If the comms and the tech are up to the job, the passion and proactiveness will pour forth.
The benefits for any business are clear:
- higher productivity.
- cost savings, and
- engaged employees.
So what of the technology?
The tools of the job remotely – laptop, mobiles, tablet, cloud computing, remote servers – need to work efficiently and effectively.
The need to communicate successfully is paramount. You need smart, joined-up systems that deliver a frictionless experience from both sides.
This is where BOM IT Solutions come in. We have the skills, experience and know-how to ensure every aspect of your IT delivers to its full potential.
So investigate and celebrate what remote workers can do for your business. It is a movement that will only grow in years to come and ask BOM IT solutions about how we can help you ensure your systems are secure and ready to make it happen.
For more information visit our remote working section to get further information or organise a consultation with our team on 0800 038 7222