The pandemic showed the business community just what was possible in terms of switching to a more remote and flexible basis for operations. However, even though many of the original lockdowns have eased the advantages that remote working offers still remain. Plus, given the uncertainty over how COVID-19 will continue to evolve, it’s clear that remote working isn’t going anywhere any time soon.
Remote working isn’t new
Although 2020 saw the biggest shift to remote working in history, this approach to workforce management isn’t new. Even before the pandemic hit there were 4.61 million people in the UK who were already working on a remote basis. For many organisations the benefits of remote working had yet to be explored and its potential for growth and increased productivity was still unknown. During 2020 there was a scramble to try and adapt for those businesses that had no infrastructure in place. Now, however, the opportunities that can come via remote work are obvious and 74% of companies plan to keep at least 5% of their workforce on a remote basis, no matter what happens as the pandemic evolves.
What benefits does remote working offer?
Flexibility – From COVID-19 to fires or floods, when remote working capabilities are in place, businesses can adapt flexibly to whatever comes next.
Opportunities to reduce costs – Remote work comes with zero overheads for the business and can reduce other expenses too, such as travel.=
Work-life balance – Employees are increasingly looking to have more control over how their lives are organised and remote working facilitates this.
Removing geographic limits – Enterprises can work with the most talented people from all over the world.
A more sustainable approach to business – Remote work can reduce your carbon footprint, as energy consumption in premises can be lowered and commuting is minimised – this could contribute a reduction of up to 50 million tonnes of greenhouse gasses.
How can businesses grow remote working capabilities?
A robust infrastructure – Technical and IT infrastructure is the most vital component in expanding remote working capabilities. Cloud integration has a big role to play in this and can ensure that data and services are still available to employees no matter where they are based. Remote access to information must be guaranteed and security standards should remain high even if systems are being accessed from multiple locations.
Effective communication – When teams are working remotely, communication becomes even more important. A focused communication strategy will ensure that no one falls by the wayside and that collaboration and relationships continue to grow.
Integrating vital tools – There are so many tech tools available today to make remote working simpler and more effective. From video conferencing to collaboration tech, there are many ways to ensure that ideas can still be shared, any conflicts resolved and that people continue to feel included and part of a cohesive team.
Remote working capabilities are going to remain essential as we go into 2022 – and have many benefits to offer businesses that embrace them.
If you’re an employer looking to introduce remote work, SADS IT can help you build the robust IT infrastructure necessary to make remote work as seamless as possible. Get in touch with our team today and we’ll be happy to help.