All Articles Tagged "telecommuting"
Some people view working from home as a company perk but for many employees it’s a necessity — if they actually want to get work done. FlexJobs‘ 4th annual career survey found 76 percent of more than 2,600 respondents avoid the office when they need to focus on important projects.
When breaking down the study’s responses on office vs. home preferences, the details reveal less than a quarter of the workforce actually prefer the standard office hours and workplace for productivity. Half of the employees surveyed stated their home was the best place for productivity. A coffee shop or co-working space was favored by 12 percent and 14 percent would actually go to the office, but outside of the 9-5 work hours.
“The results of this survey unfortunately confirm that there is a serious problem with how our workplaces support–or more accurately, don’t support–an optimal environment for productivity, and this is a real loss in both opportunity and revenue for companies,” said Sara Sutton Fell, Founder and CEO of FlexJobs, the leading online service for professionals seeking flexible work opportunities. “Companies need to take a serious look at their telecommuting policies and how they can help to harness the benefits telecommuting offers them.”
The traditional office culture is no longer the most desirable set up. Speaking from experience, transitioning into full-time telecommuting and freelance work is not always easy, but typically always worth it. The number one reason individuals surveyed desired a more flexible job and telecommuting options was to reach a better level of work-life balance, with health being a growing concern.
So, other than the desire to achieve a better work-life balance, why are so many people opting out of the office? Fewer interruptions from colleagues (76 percent), fewer distractions (74 percent), minimal office politics (71 percent), reduced stress from commuting (68 percent) and more comfortable office environment (65 percent).
The American workforce is changing, the 25- to 30-year stays at one employer are long gone and employees are putting their health and time first, even if that means a change in income. In 1995, only 9 percent of the American workforce worked from home, now 37 percent of U.S. workers telecommute.
“Time savings has outranked cost savings as a factor in seeking flexible work for the past three years, indicating people may place a higher value on their time vs money,” wrote Kathy Gardner of FlexJobs.
Clearly, not all industries benefit from telecommuting options. And for good reasons, I wouldn’t want my doctor to take office visits via Skype. But the truth is, the workplace and desires of employees are evolving.
Where you do you get your best work done, at home or the office?
Times they have a’ changed with more and more people choosing to work from home. Though it’s definitely not for everybody, many enjoy the effortless commute to their jobs and having the ability to work within a schedule that best fits their needs. Yet it would seem that there are quite a few naysayers who are pushing for people to work less in the home and more in the office.
Here are some reasons why a person should not work from home. Do you agree?
We want it all. We deserve it all. But the pressures of both your professional and personal worlds can be consuming. You’re engulfed in responsibilities trying to figure out if you should lean in or lean out. The whispers of the world say that a woman has to choose, which pushes the responsibility of it all right back onto or plate. A flexible work schedule gives you time to manage a career and spend time with family or pursue interests outside of work.
Maternity leave for a new parent averages usually up to 12 weeks after giving birth, leaving time for bonding with your child, getting adapted to a new role as a mother and time to heal physically (and maybe emotionally) after the process of childbirth. As those weeks wind down, you may find yourself unprepared to pick up where you left off at work.
Use these ten tips to help you get back on the bandwagon at work post-baby without all the strain, stress, and shock of leaving your newborn.
In an effort to reshape Yahoo’s company culture and to spearhead the company’s future in the technology industry, Yahoo President and CEO Marissa Mayer will require teleworking employees to begin reporting to Yahoo offices beginning June 2013. No more working from home! The move has sparked a huge discussion, with many people taking the pro-telecommuting stance.
Still, the 37-year-old Yahoo CEO isn’t the only one in favor of being in the office. Best Buy is following suit.
Is there some method to Mayer’s madness? If you have the option to work you full-time job from home, check out a few reasons why you might want to get your work done at the office instead.
Yahoo employees are livid about a memo that was recently sent from HR to employees and subsequently leaked to the public, revealing that, come June, employees are no longer able to work from home. Those that do will be let go and can stay at home permanently! Although there are only a few hundred employees that work from home full-time, the memo directs anyone who even works from home occasionally to make the transition. It goes as far to say “… for the rest of us who occasionally have to stay home for the cable guy, please use your best judgment in the spirit of collaboration.” Geez you can’t even wait for the cable guy?
HR (and CEO Marissa Mayer) justified the drastic decision by saying, “We need to be one Yahoo!, and that starts with physically being together.” You can check out the memo on AllThingsD. However, most all data implies that reducing employee flexibility can leave an organization divided.
The first thing to consider is how much employees value flexibility in their workplace. In a survey conducted by Mom Corps Houston, 45 percent of the 1,096 working adults who responded to questions about flexibility at work said they would be willing to give up, on average, as much as 8.5 percent of their salary for more flexibility at work.
Another aspect to consider is how productive employees will be while working from home. The numbers are still in favor of allowing flexibility. A study conducted by Stanford University of a Chinese company showed that productivity increased when employees were allowed to work from home. As reported by Forbes 9.5 percent of the increase was due to employees working more hours since there was no commute, fewer distractions, and fewer sick days taken. At home, it’s less likely that employees will be distracted by the discussion of who sang better last night on the Oscars, or taking an extended lunch break and hitting the mall.
The call center employees also took more calls per minute. The same study showed that those who worked from home were 50 percent more satisfied with their jobs and less likely to quit.
Yahoo has been struggling to stay afloat and this is another ploy to get back on the right track. Just last week, Mayer paid a visit to the Today show to unveil the company’s new homepage. That move was later questioned; Yahoo and GMA have a business partnership, and that was Robin Roberts’ first day back on the job. It was a ratings winner… for GMA.
Maybe by forcing all employees into headquarters every day they will weed out the least productive employees. One thing is clear: Yahoo employee morale was reduced the moment that memo was sent.
Employees in tech jobs are spoiled when it comes to work flexibility. And with hundreds of competing IT firms in the area that allow flexible work schedules, many employees will be seeking other employment that allows them to work from home.
After the memo was released, WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg wrote:
“For anyone who enjoys working from wherever they like in the world, and is interested in WordPress, Automattic is 100% committed to being distributed. 130 of our 150 people are outside of San Francisco.”
The most beneficial work environment is when employees have a mixed presence in the office, working a few days at home and some in the office. This allows you to be able to wait on the cable guy, while also building strong relationships with your coworkers, your managers, and the company as a whole.
(Christian Science Monitor) — Several years ago, Lisa Hammond quit her job as an assistant manager at the Wal-Mart inWichita, Kan., took a 60 percent pay cut to work for a call center, and came out ahead. How? She worked from home. This way, she saved on commuting and day-care costs, which had swallowed about half of her approximately $2,000-a-month take-home pay from Wal-Mart. Today, and two work-at-home jobs later, she earns more as a work-at-home field representative for the United States Census Bureau than she did at Wal-Mart – while still avoiding commuting and day-care costs. “I’m spoiled now. I wouldn’t want to go back to working in an office,” says Ms. Hammond, a married mother of three. Amid traffic jams, high gas prices, family needs, and a yen for more flexibility, what 21st-century worker hasn’t thought about skipping the office scene and telecommuting instead? But taking a pay cut to do it? To some, the benefits outweigh the lost income. A survey by New York-based Dice Holdings released earlier this year found that 35 percent of technology professionals would take up to 10 percent less pay to telecommute full time.
(AJC) — Metro Atlanta’s commute has a new favored route: the information highway. For the first time, state data shows teleworking has surpassed all alternatives to solo driving here as a main commute, including carpooling and mass transit. Last year, 7 percent of all metro Atlanta commuters teleworked for the majority of their commutes, a three-quarters increase over 2007, according to state Department of Transportation contractors. The percentage of commuters who telework as just an occasional option also rose, up by a third since 2007, the last time DOT studied the issue. Make no mistake, Atlanta’s heart still belongs to the car, with 82 percent of commuters driving alone. But that’s down slightly from 2007, when the state’s last survey said 85 percent drove alone.
(Businessweek) — I’ve been using a smartphone for around four years now, and I have a confession to make: I’m fairly sure that during that time, my cellphone usage has, if anything, become far less productive than it had been when I had only a regular old dumbphone. But with apps, e-mail, and Internet access, how could that possibly be? Even though having a phone is an important part of my job as a remote worker, the value of an always-on, constant tether to the office isn’t really as great as one might expect, especially when that device connects me not only to work, but also to almost limitless possibilities for procrastination, diversion, and play.
(Businessweek) — Some 2.8 million Americans now work permanently from home offices and a full 38 million (37 percent of the total U.S. workforce) telecommute at least once a month. For the most part, the mainstreaming of telecommuting and the arrival of the virtual or mobile office has been a positive development, both in terms of employee productivity and cost reduction. However, one of the challenges of the proliferating mobile workforce is for companies to ensure that their most-sensitive customer and corporate information is truly secure. Here are five steps your company can implement quickly and cost-effectively. 1. Deploy comprehensive endpoint security to check endpoint devices for spyware and malware.