Working Remotely – a Temporary Measure or a Permanent Solution?
To keep their businesses operational and their client’s needs met, many companies have some or all of their employees working remotely as a result of COVID-19. The transition was a necessity and happened quickly with the intention that it was just temporary. However, here we are months later and many of us are still working from home. This has led to many business owners wondering if it’s time to make the transition to a remote workplace a permanent one. There are benefits and challenges for both the employer and employee.
Buffer’s 2019 State of Remote Report found that 40% of people felt that a flexible schedule was their top pick when it came to the benefits of working remotely. Working from home allows employees to have a better work-life balance. There is more time for taking care of personal responsibilities and hanging out with family and friends. This is a huge happiness factor for remote workers. This flexibility also allows individuals to work when they are most productive. For some, this could be early in the morning and for others late at night.
While some aspects of your business may require sometimes employees to be available at certain hours, wouldn’t you want them to spend most of their working hours during the times when they are most productive? Many employers have seen an increase in productivity since transitioning to remote work. Rotating which employees need to be virtually available during traditional business hours can provide all employees with the benefits of a flexible schedule and provide employers with a more productive workforce.
According to Atlassian, 76% of people prefer to avoid their office completely when they need to concentrate on a project. For many people, working from home allows them to really focus on their work. Office conversations, coffee breaks, spontaneous meetings – all of these can derail a person’s concentration. Although avoiding distractions at home might be a challenge while the whole family is sheltering in place, the majority of people are again finding that working remotely allows them to be more productive. This translates into a win for both the employer and employee.
Although the cost of renting commercial office space varies by geographical location, it is still one of the largest operating expenses for a business. Companies that can go completely remote will significantly reduce their overhead expenses. Not only will they eliminate the cost of renting the office but they will also avoid other associated expenses such as maintenance and insurance.
Increased Talent Pool
Allowing employees to work remotely greatly expands the talent pool when it comes time to hire new employees. A long commute will no longer cause you to lose out on the ideal candidate. Across the state, country, or on the other side of the world, location is no longer a barrier against hiring the most qualified candidates.
While working remotely does provide a lot of positives for both the employer and their employees, it’s not without a few challenges. At the top of that list is communication. Direct personal communication is all but eliminated. Project management requires more oversight since you can’t just lean over and ask your coworker what the status of a project is. And remember those coffee break conversations? They often relayed relevant project-related information that can slip through the cracks when working remotely.
It’s important for employers to understand that all of their employees may not make the transition successfully. While an overall increase in productivity seems to be the general consensus, some individuals aren’t self-disciplined enough to work remotely. Although there are various types of tracking software to oversee productivity, they can be a double-edged sword. They may help keep less disciplined employees motivated, however, invasive tracking software can breed mistrust throughout your organization and lead to the majority of your workforce feeling badgered or harassed. When transitioning to a remote workforce, employers need to find the right balance between oversight and trust.
The Start-up Costs of Working Remotely
While it can be a great option for many businesses, successfully transitioning to a permanent remote workforce will require initiating new policies and procedures. Developing and implementing these takes time and time is money. It can also involve new business equipment or technology, new hires, and additional training. So even though business owners will save money in the long run, they will still have to deal with some unexpected upfront expenses when going remote.
CapFlow Funding Group may be able to help. We offer invoice factoring and merchant cash advances and are dedicated to providing the short-term working capital you need to successfully transition to a remote workforce. We will work with you to find the best funding solution for your business.
CapFlow Funding Group specializes in factoring and merchant cash advances. We also work with trusted partners to provide other alternative financing options that may be better suited to our clients’ business needs. We service many different industries with a variety of funding needs. Contact us today and find out how invoice factoring can help grow your small business.