- Benefits of remote working for employees
- Benefits of remote working for employers
- Disadvantages of working from home for employees
- Disadvantages of working from home for employers
Ever since the arrival of the novel Coronavirus, the nation has had to adapt to the comparatively new methods of getting work done.
Ranging from relying more on e-marts for groceries and daily necessities to adapting and setting up remote work stations in the house, the nation had to adapt to the altogether new norm.
Even in the workplace, work from home became the new norm. However, work from home advantages and disadvantages go hand-in-hand for both the employers as well as employees.
Let’s find out what both parties face during work from home.
Benefits of remote working for employees
Work from home advantages are plenty for employees for the following reasons.
Savings in extra expense
One of the advantages of remote working is the saving of extra expenses. In India, apart from rent, traveling is the second major expense for most employees.
Also, employees spend extra in the office cafeterias, on petrol price, toll fees, and other miscellaneous items. With work from home, all such extra expenses have been limited.
Exclusion of commute time
Traveling in metros takes a lot of time and energy. Employees who had to travel for a minimum of 2 hours or more on workdays used to feel drained on finally reaching the office.
One of the advantages of working from home is doing away with traveling time. This saves time and gives way to better productivity as you don’t need to travel to the office.
For example, a task that used to take 4 days to complete on a normal office day, can be completed in less time when working from home.
In a normal office environment, you find yourself switching between tasks a lot and get many opinions on a task’s priority. But during remote working, with proper time management and discipline, you have more independence regarding your work.
This can help you to add your flair to your work, prioritize your tasks, and take ownership of the tasks assigned to you.
Effective communication at the workplace requires clarity in context, active listening, etc. During the normal office days, you could communicate face-to-face which used to keep miscommunication at bay.
However, when working from home, you need to go the extra mile while communicating to keep the team updated about progress, hiccups, etc. so that the team can be on the same page in terms of work progress.
Depending majorly on telecommunication tools might seem like a disadvantage of remote working, but the regular use of communication tools helps in improving communication instead of relying on simply face-to-face communication.
One of the advantages of working from home is the absence of the usual office distractions. A quieter ambiance helps to get done with the work faster and more peacefully.
All it requires is good time management and a To-Do list to keep track of priority tasks.
Another work from home advantage is work flexibility. Without having to travel for work, employees can save up a lot of time and work as per their most productive hours.
Benefits of remote working for employers
Not only employees, even employers have been party to the benefits of remote working. Here are some advantages of working from home for employers.
Broader spectrum of recruitment
Many organizations prefer to hire candidates from the same city.
However, with the current remote working situation, they can broaden their recruitment to different cities. This can naturally help companies to tap into sections they would otherwise overlook.
Higher staff retention
One of the benefits of working from home is employee satisfaction. Different employees find satisfaction in different things, for example, employees who had to commute to work are happy not to have to do so.
Along with this, work flexibility and independence add to the work satisfaction of employees. Needless to say, employees prefer to stick to the company where they feel satisfied leading to higher staff retention.
During normal times, companies apart from paying their employees incurred several other expenses such as electricity, rent, maintenance costs of elevators and security systems, etc.
So, it can be stated that one of the major benefits of working from home that companies have enjoyed is the reduction in extra costs.
Better employee productivity
With employees having to work from home with independence and flexibility, there is a rise in productivity amongst the workforce.
This is one of the major benefits of remote working for companies. Business Line posted, SAP Concur conducted a study where 69% of Indian employees believe that their productivity has increased while working remotely.
Reduction in leaves
Another advantage of remote working is that there is a reduction in employee leaves.
With everyone back at home with their family, and no more traveling to work, employees are in a much more comfortable ambiance and less stressed and tired.
Also, with work flexibility being a major work from home advantage, employees can work as per a schedule best suited to you. This leads to them taking fewer leaves.
Disadvantages of working from home for employees
The advantages and disadvantages of remote working are two sides of the same coin. Although there are variations in the disadvantages from one household to another, these are a few common disadvantages of working from home.
Distractions within the household
It is true that when working from home there are no office distractions, but home comes with its own distractions.
The home comprises of family members and it is natural that there will be disturbances. You can inform your family members to hold off discussions for post-work hours, lock the door to your workspace or even use noise-canceling earphones to keep noises at bay.
Lack of human contact
One of the biggest disadvantages of working from home is the lack of face-to-face communication with friends and colleagues.
Communication with other people helps us feel involved, but without it, loneliness and a feeling of isolation take over. To avoid isolation, you can choose to have a video call or voice call with your colleagues and friends.
Disruption in work-life balance
Another one of the disadvantages of remote working is the lack of work-life balance. Working from home can dissolve the demarcation between work hours and personal life for various reasons.
To maintain a healthy work-life balance, it is best to create a clear demarcation between work hours and personal time.
Try to start your work the same time you would when in the office and complete your tasks within those hours. Avoid work calls post-work hours unless absolutely urgent.
Risk of feeling burnt out
With the reasons for applying for leaves diminishing, the risk of burnout becomes one of the biggest disadvantages of working from home.
It is best to take a day or two off when you find yourself anxious or if you feel extremely low and simply need to unwind. Take this time to do what you love to do, meditate, etc., but do keep your gadgets away as it will negate the resting process.
Disadvantages of working from home for employers
Once more despite the benefits of remote working, there are certain disadvantages of working from home that employers are currently facing.
Companies are also faced with the disadvantages of working from home. Topping the list is performance monitoring.
For certain job profiles, it can be a real challenge for employers to monitor performance in remote working conditions.
Onboarding new employees
When a new employee joins a team, the initial week or two is extremely crucial to getting settled in the team and understanding responsibilities.
But when in a remote work setup, this is one of the greatest disadvantages of working from home that employers face.
Constant fear of security risks
With the world sustaining on data, IT teams of every company are always on red alert to protect it.
However, with remote working being the norm since 2020, this is one of the major disadvantages of working from home. Companies have been working around the clock to protect the systems of their employees to keep company data secure.
So it can be concluded that work from home advantages and disadvantages go hand-in-hand for the employees as well as the employers. But the past one and half years have shown that together the disadvantages can be minimized with proper care.
To do so, companies across the country have started covid related initiatives to help their employees get through these tough times by providing assistance in enhancing employee’s mental health, arranging for vaccines and other medical assistance, lenient leave policies for the employee’s tested positive, etc.
It can well be assumed that work from home is here to stay as more and more employees and employers start bridging the gaps.