With the rise of the gig economy, flexible working has become more mainstream. Younger generations realize they are able to strike a balance between work and life.
While digital nomads famously make the most of remote working opportunities, small businesses often do not offer work flexibility. Commonly, small businesses of 1 to 4 employees offer flexibility, but as the business size increases, flexibility drops drastically.
Small business owners often express that flexibility can make business planning harder. Therefore, leading to a decreased sense of collaboration.
In most cases, the advantage of flexibility heavily outweighs the disadvantages.
Here are some of the key reasons why implementing work flexibility is worth it.
Being flexible saves money
The overhead costs involved with hosting your staff in an office can be huge. Allowing staff to work remotely can significantly improve your bottom line.
Remote workers are also substantially less likely to take time off sick. Softchoice found that 57% of employees worked while ill and 44% worked during vacation.
Also, employees enjoying flexible working save around $5,000 per year working from home. Why you ask? Well, they don’t have to commute to work and can put some of these saved hours back into their tasks at hand. Additionally, flexible working reduces turnover. The recruitment and training costs of bringing in new team members aren’t something to scoff at.
Employee morale and productivity
New generations don’t embrace the old mantra of, leave your personal life at home. Instead, they understand that the work/life balance is crucial in the success of a business.
Business flexibility has proven to boost employee morale. And, happy employees mean increased productivity, more creative input, and an overall boost in team collaboration. The satisfaction of your staff is a key aspect of the stability and success of your business.
Employees who opt-in for flexible work style, such as remote work, are more productive. I know this may come as a surprise, but they actually are more productive than your in-house team. Not only do they work more productively, but they also take less sick leave, worked longer hours, reach their goals easier and are generally happier.
A flexible work environment offers employees more time to spend with their loved ones. A common complaint from employees is their long hours away from family. This mostly applies to parents. Parents want to spend most, if not all of their time with their kids. Flexible working gives employees the gift of scheduling. This allows them to find the balance they need in life to spend precious time spent with family.
Also, switching to a flexible working structure allows you to recognize each individual needs, rather than a forced schedule. Ultimately, putting more emphasis on the happiness and needs of the employees will be beneficial in the long run. Unhappy and burnt out employees quit. And to follow, replacing these employees can be costly for your business.
Did you know that being flexible and offering remote work reduces your business’ carbon footprint? Eurek Alert states that increased time spent working at home between 2003 and 2012, lowered energy by a whopping 1700 trillion BTU (British Thermal Units). Each day, the Greenhouse gas emissions worldwide, exceed 54 million tons. Many of those who are in transport to and from work. In the end, remote work can mean more energy used at home, but much less energy used overall.
Daniel Calvin is on a mission to help businesses increase productivity and do so in a way that benefits everyone in the organization. He is the community relations manager for Number1 Office Machines.