This is an entreaty to all employers. Let us encourage more of our staff to work from home.
Many businesses are now looking at allowing their people to work from home. The problem is that this is not happening anywhere near enough.
There is a very long list of reasons why this is beneficial and a very short list of reasons for NOT doing it. Whilst I accept that there are some jobs that cannot be done from home, (an example might be digging holes in roads), conversely I passionately believe that there are massive opportunities for everyone if businesses would look harder at this subject and get more pro-active.
The most obvious beneficiaries are our staff. Some of the benefits could include:
- More flexibility with balancing work and home life;
- Less time wasted travelling;
- Less stress when travelling;
- Can work in an environment of their own choosing rather than an imposed one.
Benefits to the business might include:
- Happier staff – improved staff retention;
- Able to recruit easier (they will WANT to work for you!);
- Less office space needed;
- No problems with people travelling to and from work in poor weather;
- Less opportunity for illness to spread around the office.
For me, I really do think that if we get serious about allowing people to work from home, then we could significantly reduce the amount of travelling that we do. How much less air pollution would there be? Cars would also produce much less noxious gas contributing to the greenhouse effect? Also how much easier would travel be for those that have to travel?
The usual retort from business owners is one of “How do I know they are working when they should be?” This question makes by blood boil. Furthermore, we are no longer living in the Victorian era. The reality is that:
- Any member of staff given this freedom and trust from their company is going to be much more likely to want to stay employed by them, and
- People actually do MORE work if they work from home
In this day and age, setting up the technology is relatively easy – you can switch company phones to mobiles and computer access is easy.
There are always going to be SOME circumstances where your staff have to work from an office somewhere, but a little bit of an extra caring attitude could benefit everyone. So let’s start putting more thought into what people want and as employers – give it to them.
I would like to see office buildings full of office workers, become a thing of the past. Let’s get 21st century.
So – if you are considering encouraging more working from home – take the plunge.
If you are not – then I urge you to do so.