If you clicked on this article, that means you understand the world of work is changing. There’s a new kid on the block and he’s mixing things up. The stringent 9 to 5 has a new neighbor, Telecommuting. Telecommuting isn’t a completely new idea, but thanks to modern-day technology and mobile lifestyles it’s becoming a big idea.
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, in 2015, almost a quarter of all employees in the U.S. reported doing at least some of their work remotely. This is up 19% from 2003. Remote employment is trending outside the US as well. A worldwide survey by PGi, showed that more than 50% of employees who telecommute part-time want to increase their remote hours. The same survey showed that 60% would leave their current job for a full-time remote position. Many employers are giving into these employee requests for a more flexible, remote working environment. It’s not just because they value their employees and want to make them happy. There are irrefutable benefits for businesses as well.
Little to Lose, Much to Gain: Telecommuting Benefits
Telecommuting allows companies to stay competitive in attracting and keeping talented employees. According to Level Up by Forbes, employers can save on average $11,000 per year per employee due to reduced employee turnover and decreased overhead cost. Remote employment helps the bottom line of the companies by doing more than reducing cost. It can increase employee productivity and engagement as well. Only 7% of employees believe they are most productive in the office and 65% believe a flexible schedule would increase their productivity. Telecommuting also reduces a company’s carbon footprint, boosting their corporate social responsibility.
Technology and the Mobile Future
Companies and employees have always desired the benefits of remote employment. But they only recently became attainable. Technological advancements in hardware and the development of efficient communication and collaboration software have allowed telecommuting to become the future of work.
The new office isn’t a building, but a mobile device. With Internet access and cloud storage, people can work from literally almost anywhere in the world. Today’s office could be a plane flying over the Atlantic Ocean, a treehouse in the middle of the rainforest, a hammock at the beach, and one’s own backyard. The possibilities are limitless.
Globally in the last four years, the amount of internet consumption per mobile device has more than doubled while desktop internet consumption is half of what it was. Mobile devices are clearly changing when, where, and how people receive and share information. The future is often said to be unpredictable. Whether you saw this trend coming or not, it is here. Why not embrace it?
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Also published on Medium.