Telecommuting, the Pros and Cons of Working Remotely
Working remotely sounds like a dream come true.
Many people dream of working from home. People imagine getting up later and then sitting down at home on a soft couch in their pajamas as they have a pleasant and easy work day.
While this sounds fabulous, the reality of telecommuting is often far more complex. A home based job has both advantages and disadvantages. In many ways, this is an easy way for people to increase their employee happiness.
Working at home can also mean increasing employee engagement that helps people feel more part of the company culture. At the same time, working from home can also have certain disadvantages.
Those who work from home may not be as in tune with their colleagues about their company. They may lack contact with
co-workers and find themselves confronting feelings of isolation that can be hard to get past. Working at home can also make it hard for people to separate the world of work and the world of home life.
Blurring the two may make the employee feel as if they are never off work leading to feelings of burnout and enormous frustration. Making the arrangement work often requires careful attention to detail and determination.
A Relaxing Work Look
Those who work at home often get away from the need for formal dress or the need to work in a uniform. Women who are telecommuting can avoid the need to buy items like stockings that are both costly and fragile.
A woman who works at home can also avoid wearing makeup and high heels. She need not worry that a single stain on her dress will make her look bad all day long. She can also forgo costly hours at the beauty parlor and trying to keep up with the latest styles in order to look fashionable and up to date.
Many men benefit as well as they can discard the tight ties and long pants that can make it hard on them during the warm summer months. Doing so can be freeing for men, allowing them to fully concentrate on the matter in front of them rather than a jacket that does not fit right. Men and women can both also save money on clothing that is soft and comfortable. While formal dress may be required now and then, in general, most people who work from their homes can mostly get avoid such costly and often uncomfortable clothing.
Increased Time At Home
Many people who work from home also find a greater sense of employee happiness because they are no longer spending long hours sitting in traffic. Instead of running out in the morning to catch a train or shove snow of their car, they can simply take a long shower, grab a cup of coffee and wait for their work shift to start.
When they work at home, they can also save money by getting rid of their commuting costs. Many workers find they can now get by with a single car rather than two. They also find it much easier to attend a child’s football game and help them with their homework.
This can help them be more involved in a child’s life. Children have the pleasure of knowing that a parent is home with them when they get home from school. When they are there they can also take time out from work now and then to offer a child supervision and support. Parents can relax knowing that they are there more often for their children and need not worry that the child is off doing something inappropriate.
Some Disadvantages of Working From Home
While working at home clearly has major advantages, many people find that it also has certain drawbacks as well.
Someone who works at home may not be there in the office, sharing in the company culture. They may also not be in touch with supervisors directly. Lacking direct, constant contact with company supervisors can make it hard for them to prove their worth and get a vital promotion.
They may be doing wonderful things at work but to those at the company headquarters, they may remain just a name on a card and little else. The worker may also feel as if they have few people to talk to during the day. This can make working at home feel very lonely. They may not get invited to company parties and get left out of celebrations such as a company anniversary.
Those they do stay in touch with may know little about their lives, making it hard for them to forge friendships and create work networks that can help them learn about additional openings and jobs elsewhere that might be suited for their talents and aims. This can lead to a frustrating feel of career stagnation.
Making It All Work
Those who work at home can find many ways to help increase their sense of employee engagement and avoid some of the pitfalls that may happen when they work at home.
- Setting aside a specific room in the house can help separate work and home life.
- Putting on more formal clothing can also help people live up their professional responsibilities.
- A worker may also ask if they can come into work once or twice a week at the office to help them retain connections and stay in touch with important office activities.
Doing so can help them remain more than a name on a page. Many people who work at home also find it helpful to join a few clubs that are related to their interests. Attending meetings can help them stay on top of industry developments and forge important connections at the same time.
Women who work from home may wish to consider networking with other working moms. Doing so can help them discover tips that other women have learned as well as connect with others who may share their concerns. In short, careful attention to detail can help make anyone’s work at home dreams come true.
Is telecommuting right for you? Is it something that would improve your staff’s happiness and engagement?
Why not let them tell you?
EPIC, Employee Perceived Image of the Company® helps your company develop a community in which your team members feel safe enough to share their ideas, comments and suggestions and have their co-workers vote on them.
Schedule a demo today and see how we can help your company have more engaged and productive team members.