The coronavirus pandemic has placed a huge strain on many businesses, with a rapid transition from the office to home-based working required to keep operations on track.
Although the vaccine is being rolled out and the lifting of restrictions is within sight, a survey conducted by the Institute of Directors (IoD) suggests that working from home is here to stay.
The survey was completed by almost a thousand company directors and nearly three quarters (74%) said they would continue with increased home-working after the pandemic.
What could be some of the reasons? We have outlined a few of them below.
Lower rent costs
Cutting costs can increase profits, so it’s unsurprising that an organisation might decide to maintain a remote workforce if employees can still do their job in an efficient manner.
If people have the option to work from home, then a business will not need to spend as much money on premises to house them.
According to a survey published in January by global accountancy firm RSM, three quarters of mid sized businesses in the UK have started, or are considering, reducing the volume of their office space.
More fulfilled employees
Not having to commute to an office provides employees with the chance to enjoy a greater work-life balance. Having more time for personal activities can significantly improve their mental well-being, making them more motivated to work productively.
For example, if an employee knows they do not have to clock off at a specific time to catch the London to Bradford train, they are less likely to rush aspects of their work. They may even be more inclined to stay later to complete tasks when working from home.
Of course, it is important to ensure that a decrease in face-to-face interactions does not lead to impaired working relationships or a feeling of isolation for certain staff members.
A larger talent pool
Having a permanent base means a business is more likely to focus their recruitment on applicants in their immediate vicinity.
By offering positions with remote working, businesses can open the vacancy to a greater number of applicants. It does not matter if someone lives down the road, in a different county or in another country entirely, if they have the skills they can apply.
This means that businesses are able to hire the best person for the job, rather than just the best local candidate.