Remote work is the future, and not just because of COVID-19

As several parts of Australia enter another COVID-19 lockdown or face further restrictions, many businesses have had to hastily reorganise their working from home systems. But not us.

Here at Elite Words, we’ve been working remotely since our foundation in 2017, long before any pandemic forced us to. Our team of five have seen the endless benefits of working from home first-hand, something that many companies are just starting to realise with the pandemic. So what exactly are these benefits? With the current state of things, remote work is a way of keeping ourselves and our communities safe from viruses. However, there are so many other benefits of remote work that will outlive the pandemic.

Increased productivity
For years, managers and employers have expressed apprehension towards working from home due to the assumption that workers will have more distractions and be less productive. However, the statistics prove otherwise. In an attempt to find out how COVID-19 has changed Australia’s attitude towards work situations, DocuSign conducted a recent survey of over 2,000 Australian office workers. They found that 82% of Australians believed they could maintain their productivity just as effectively while working at home.

Another study of over 16,000 people by Harvard University’s Quarterly Journal of Economics found that people who worked from home actually had a 13% increase in productivity. There were several reasons for this, including quieter workspaces, more convenient breaks (e.g. ease of getting food and beverages, and going to the bathroom), fewer sick days or time off, and a significant drop in work attrition. This just goes to show that employees can be just as productive, if not more, when working from home.

Less geographical barriers
You may have heard the saying, “there are seven billion people in the world, you really think your soulmate lives down the street?” Well, the same could be said for great employees. All too often, employers miss out on great talent simply because of geographical barriers. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that most of the population commuted a distance of 10 to 20kms for work, followed by 5 to 10kms, according to the 2016 Census. In the grand scheme of things, employees aren’t coming from very far away; no one wants to sacrifice 5 hours of free time travelling to and from work every day. As a result, employers are restricted from hiring people who live outside of their office’s radius. By increasing flexibility around remote work, this problem vanishes – it becomes possible to hire great talent who live 100 hours away, yet only commute a few metres to their home computer to start work.

Employing an entire team of workers who all live in the same region can also disadvantage your business by limiting the different experiences and perspectives your workers have to offer. If all your employees studied at the same three universities, or grew up within half an hour of each other, you may lack the opportunity to brainstorm a variety of ideas and opinions. This can be especially detrimental if your company’s products or services want to appeal to people nationwide or globally. Having a diverse mix of employees with unique geographical experiences can provide your company with new perspectives and ideas you may never have considered. Remote work becomes the obvious answer if you want to hire amazing talent from all over the country, or even the world.

Just look at Elite Words as an example. No two of us went to the same university or live in the same suburb. Our unique experiences have enabled us to share distinct outlooks on writing and business, allowing the team to learn from each other and consider different viewpoints. We cater our writing towards hundreds of different target audiences for different clients, and yet this has never been a struggle for our multifaceted and wide-ranging team.

Prepared for the future
The future of work points to flexible working conditions. For many years, remote work arrangements were considered to be a special perk of a modern company. As we look to the future, it is very likely that employees will come to expect some sort of remote work flexibility as a standard aspect of business, as opposed to a special perk. This is supported by research conducted by the University of Sydney in 2020, which found that 75% of Australians believe employers will continue to sustain remote work arrangements in the future.

As remote work becomes an expectation as opposed to a benefit, workers are more and more willing to leave their old physical workplace habits behind. In 2021, GitLab conducted a study with over 3,900 participants, and found that only 57% of Australians would want to return to their regular work commute after having worked from home. It’s 2021 and almost half the population already don’t want to commute to work. We can only imagine how this attitude will strengthen as we become more accustomed to working from home.

With these rising trends and attitudes towards remote work, it is apparent that companies must adapt to remote work flexibility if they haven’t already. Companies that refuse to adapt to these new expectations may risk falling behind and could miss out on great talent.

Improved lifestyle
So we’ve talked about the business benefits of working from home, but it doesn’t stop there. Being able to work remotely also has a range of benefits for your personal wellbeing and lifestyle. All that time you would normally spend packing lunch, getting dressed, and commuting to your office can be used for sleeping in, self-care time, or family time. Even if it only takes you half an hour to get to work, that adds up to five hours of commuting a week, which after a month is almost a whole day!

If you have children, or even needy pets, being able to work from home can be a blessing as it enables you to spend more time with your family and cut day-care costs. Remote work often comes with flexible working hours, so you may also be able to schedule your work time around your personal life. When done right, this can drastically improve your work-life balance and enable you to be there for your family and yourself, while also being productive at work.   

Need some help adjusting to the work from home life? We’ve got you covered with our blog, Top three tips for working from home.

Here to help, from anywhere
Elite Words are experts at working remotely, so we’re ready to provide our copywriting services to anyone, no matter where your business is based.  Don’t want face to face meetings? That’s fine, we’re whizzes with remote business dealings. Need to write for a niche audience? Also fine, our wide-ranging and diverse team have experience writing for hundreds of different target audiences. To find out more about how we can help you elevate your content strategy and copy, contact us today!

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