Business

How Remote Work is Reshaping Company Culture and Productivity

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After COVID-19 forced offices to close, remote work became an attractive alternative. Many companies quickly provided employees with all the tools necessary for productive remote working practices.

Maintaining company culture requires much more than providing employees with tools they require; effective onboarding of new hires, encouraging employee and peer mentorship relationships, organizing team events (virtual or physical), and encouraging remote interactions are all vital to ensure its continued growth.

Flexibility

Some companies shy away from remote work because they believe culture can only be defined through in-person interactions, and that without those interactions productivity will suffer. Yet employees report that flexible scheduling options and work-from-home options actually strengthen culture.

Flexible scheduling enables employees to avoid commuter stress, which in turn allows for increased focus and higher productivity. Furthermore, having more free time allows more for personal errands, family, and friend engagements as well as improved sleep quality as well as overall improved health and wellbeing.

Remote work offers many other advantages to both employees and businesses alike, including cost savings for employers on office space, equipment and utilities; employees can save on gas or public transit expenses and gas savings are passed along directly.

Flexible schedules also enable workers to minimize interruptions from co-workers or household members while working, helping them complete tasks more quickly and effectively. Our research revealed that those most productive employees tend to work from home on occasion.

Create a positive remote workplace culture is integral to the success of any remote team, whether that means encouraging open and transparent communication, celebrating achievements, or building a sense of community among employees. Regular virtual meetings or social interactions help employees feel connected both to their company and each other.

Research by our firm also demonstrated that employees who feel connected to their company culture tend to be happier in their jobs than those who don’t, which can be achieved through various strategies designed to foster workplace connectivity, such as providing thoughtful new employee onboarding, assigning career and peer mentors, hosting company and team events (virtual or physical), designing physical workspaces to foster serendipitous encounters and designing physical workspaces to allow serendipity interactions.

As flexibility becomes an ever more widespread necessity, every company, agency, department and organization should strongly consider adopting a remote work policy for all of its employees if at all possible. Doing so has numerous benefits both to employees and to their employer: increasing worker satisfaction and morale as well as leading to higher productivity and key performance metrics.

Work-Life Balance

Many employees find remote work is helping them achieve a more satisfactory work-life balance. Working at their own pace and being able to organize hours around personal commitments such as child care or doctor’s appointments is an enormous advantage of working remotely; plus it reduces time, money and stress in their lives by foregoing commute time and costs.

Remote work offers many advantages to businesses; however, for some it has the potential of undermining the culture they have built within their offices. Leaders fear that taking away remote working will destroy this important aspect of company culture; team members could become disenfranchised as a result. While this fear may be valid, remote working can actually lead to a strong and vibrant company culture.

Communication is key for an effective remote working policy. Once team members know their expectations and deadlines, they can more efficiently manage their time. Furthermore, remote working gives employees more freedom in prioritizing their own work according to family and life priorities rather than being forced into attendance at meetings that don’t benefit their career goals or project aims.

Managers need to provide regular updates to their teams on company news and projects in order to maintain high levels of transparency, such as creating a Slack channel dedicated to “breaking news”, or designing an intranet news page which requires mandatory reading by employees.

Establish a space for collaboration and social interactions within the workplace. This can be accomplished with virtual team meetings, videoconferencing software or other tools such as Buffer’s weekly 30-minute virtual Donut chats on Slack as well as pairing cross-functional employees for coffee meetups throughout the week. Furthermore, employees should receive recognition for their hard work through formal lunch meetings or emails to show that the company appreciates them and appreciate their contributions.

Increased Productivity

As remote work allows employees to stay engaged and motivated throughout their day, it can make them more productive than onsite workers. Furthermore, remote workers may enjoy more relaxed and stress-free working conditions which further increases productivity.

But remote work cultures can still present significant challenges. Employers must establish clear goals and expectations with their teams, while providing the tools needed for their success. Employees need to know what meetings, communication methods and work-from-home policies to expect from a company as well as how they can strike a healthy work-life balance when working from home.

Many have been forced to reconsider their work-life balance and how they achieve their goals following the coronavirus pandemic, prompting many to look into working from home as an option – often now considered their “new normal.” Remote working allows employees to avoid commute times to the office, freeing them up for daily routine activities such as taking regular breaks from computer use by walking, reading books or socialising more with family, friends, pets etc.

Flexible schedules also enable employees to attend events more easily or meet with colleagues more conveniently. While traditional employees would need to request time off in order to attend weddings or children’s soccer games, remote workers simply arrange their work around these events.

Flexible work environments can save businesses money. By permitting executives to work from home, companies can lower overhead costs. Furthermore, larger firms may even benefit by tailoring executive salaries depending on where they reside.

An effective remote work culture is key to increasing employee satisfaction, productivity and retention. According to Owl Labs’ State of Remote Work report, two-thirds of respondents indicated they would immediately start searching for another job with another organization should their current one discontinue offering work from home options. By creating and enforcing a remote work policy for employees they can ensure both happiness and productivity whilst keeping operations running smoothly even during unexpected setbacks or crises.

Increased Employee Satisfaction

Remote work offers businesses flexibility that can increase employee satisfaction and retention, such as being able to avoid the stresses associated with commuting; saving on gas, transportation costs and work from home costs for rural or low-cost urban living is often possible through this arrangement. Working from home also helps businesses retain talented workers without them searching for other employment opportunities – helping businesses retain talented workers more effectively while keeping them happier in their roles!

Some fear that when employees work remotely for their organization, its culture may suffer. Culture refers to a group of shared beliefs, behaviors and goals that define an organization; though this may be true when employees work remotely from home; rather, companies should focus on creating strong virtual workplaces with tools enabling team members to connect and collaborate while also rewarding employees’ achievements.

Video technology in meetings can also make it easier for employees to build relationships amongst themselves, particularly if working remotely is something they find isolating. Scheduling regular meetings where all team members are encouraged to attend will facilitate this goal, as will planning social events that welcome all team members – thus building a sense of community between team members.

Working remotely not only increases worker happiness and productivity, but it can also save companies money in overhead costs. By eliminating daily commuter costs, employees who telecommute become much more productive at work while the reduced need for office space could mean savings on rent, utilities, and other expenses. Furthermore, permitting workers to telecommute can make recruiting talent much cheaper for employers.

Working from home will undoubtedly become more and more common over time, which can only benefit both business and employee satisfaction. To ensure its success, however, it’s crucial that policies are in place that enable an effective collaboration between onsite staff members and those telecommuting from home.