There’s more to remote work than getting to work in your PJ's on occasion, the benefits may be much more significant for employee wellbeing and performance. 
In 2019 Circuit surveyed 13,000 candidates in the IT market to determine what employees want from their employers, including their drivers and motivators. The Candidate Retention Report gave us an insight into what factors impact employee satisfaction and influence employee retention rate.

Through our data collection, it was interesting to the team how many people require flexible working arrangements as a non-negotiable factor in their job search.

Whilst Circuit is a collaborative environment, whereby, team members work in close proximity to one another, it was something new for us to consider. We took a deep dive into the evolving trend of remote work.

Most typical offices operate a 'bums in seat' model, whereby employees are required to work almost all of their hours at their desks. The tides are changing as employees are taking more control over their work-life. The Sunday Morning Herald reported, “One in three Australian workers now regularly work from home.” 

Changing work life

The workforce is continually changing. With people having longer careers and later retirement, more working parents and technological advances impacting the way we work. It's no surprise that employees want the nature of the way they work to change too.

Technological advances mean that the mobile workforce is more attainable than ever. With cloud and web-based software, it's now easier than ever to access work and be able to perform the job as 'normal'. 

As younger generations step into more senior roles, the trend is here to stay! The next generation of leaders don't remember a childhood without wifi and wouldn't be able to tell you what a 'floppy disk' is. The proficiency of the younger generations in utilizing technology increases productivity and efficiency (to their advantage), being able to work remotely.

Enabling a more remote workforce enables the utilization of outside skills, previously limited by proximity. The internet has enabled a service-based economy whereby there is global free trade of skills.

What are the benefits of working from home?
Reduced commuting time

Alleviating travel time to and from for employees can be worth its weight in gold. Reducing employee fatigue and happiness even if a few days a month is beneficial to employee welfare and productivity.

In addition to the opportunity cost of the time spent commuting, the commute can also be costly to employees. Employees benefit from reduced commuter stress (we can all relate to that 7 am gridlock that makes us curse into our coffee!)

Family-friendly workplaces 

There is a move towards more family-centric businesses. The number of males taking parental leave is increasing each year, as is the desire for both parents to be able to work. Providing an environment of inclusivity and support for families, acknowledging their need to be accessible to those that depend on them, increases employee loyalty and is desirable to many in the job search.

Work-Life balance

With the growing emphasis on work-life balance, allowing employees to work from home is another way to encourage more balanced rested and satisfied employees.

Fewer distractions

Whilst concerns may arise regarding employee concentration and productivity when not in the office, there is an argument that employees are more content when in their own environment. The time spent working is much more enjoyable and focused (not to mention the fewer office distractions).

Being able to work in solitude when required is important. Working flexibly enables individuals to work to their style and implement their personal best practices. Some people thrive in a stressful environment, whereas others struggle. Enabling employees to individually tailor their work environment assists personal development and leadership skills. 

Finding a balance

Whilst headcount is important for corporate culture, teamwork and motivation, having a balance is ideal. There needs to be synergy between employees being able to work flexibly and physically being required in the office. Cohesion is important for the performance of the team. Negotiating days at home with annual leave and RDO's is all part of the process.

Circuit has introduced our work from home arrangements, where employees are privy to a WFH scheme, enabling and encouraging a more flexible and outcome-focused approach.


 

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