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Flexibility And Productivity: The Many Benefits Of Working From Home

Working From Home

Remote work has grown in popularity in recent years. Currently, more than 4 million people work from home in the U.S. at least half of the time, and that number has grown by more than 40% in the last five years. 

Workers want flexibility when it comes to where they work. According to a recent LinkedIn survey, 82% of working professionals would like to work from home one day a week or more, and 57% want to work from home three days or more.

Can employees be productive when working from home?

When it comes to working remotely, the most common fear among managers is that employees will work less, but the data doesn’t support this fear. In fact, numerous studies have shown that employees are often more productive at home than in an office environment. Especially if they made the choice to opt for a garden office, like the ones on this page According to a 2015 study, employees at a Chinese call center who were given the opportunity to work from home saw a 13% increase in performance; 9% worked more minutes per shift and 4% handled more calls per minute. A more recent study confirmed these results, citing the top reasons employees are more productive at home:  

  • Fewer distractions
  • Fewer interruptions from co-workers
  • Less stress from not having to travel
  • Fewer incentives to make contact or show up to be present
  • Less noisy environment

Working from home does require some discipline, however. The most successful remote employees are those who take regular breaks, have set work schedules, and create task lists or use other organizational tools to help them throughout the day. 

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How does working from home save companies and employees money?

Employees who work from home save money on commuting, spending less on gas or public transportation. For those who regularly buy coffee or lunch at the office, working from home allows them to eat at home more often and spend less. 

Employers also have the opportunity to save money when they allow their employees to work from home. Fewer people in the office means less electricity and other resources, and in a flexible workspace, it can even mean a reduction in office size. The call center in the 2015 study saved an average of $2,000 per employee by allowing workers to do their work from home. 

A less glaring benefit of working from home for employers is the loss of fewer employees to sick leave. Many workers feel compelled to come into the office when they are sick, but during flu and cold weather season, this means they spread germs. Allowing people to work remotely when they are sick results in a healthier, more productive workforce. 

Employees who have flexibility are more satisfied than those who don’t. That means better employee retention, which translates into lower recruitment costs to replace dissatisfied employees. 

And by offering remote work opportunities, companies are more competitive in the talent market outside their geographic area. For example, a company in Boise, Idaho, looking for a web developer can hire a remote employee based in Silicon Valley, where there is a greater pool of top talent.

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