If you are interested in working from home, it is safe to say that you can easily come up with a long list of personal benefits.
But what about your employer? As you can imagine, the company that signs your paycheck is well aware of the many benefits of telecommuting. They are also aware of what this means to them in terms of potential drawbacks.
Benefits of telecommuting for the employer
- Increased productivity. Despite what many employers believe, productivity often times increases when an employee is able to work from home. When somebody feels better about their work arrangement they often times put in additional hours while doing whatever they can to help the organization.
- Increased employee retention. There is nothing worse than dealing with a high turnover rate. Not only do you have to find new employees on a regular basis, but the cost of training can be astronomical. The turnover rate amongst telecommuting professionals is much lower. After all, there are not too many people who willingly give up a work at home position that they enjoy.
- Reduced absenteeism. Are you tired of dealing with absent employees? From bad weather to a traffic accident, there are many reasons why workers call-off without notice. With telecommuting employees, this is not an issue nearly as often. As long as the worker can make their way to their home office there is no excuse for being absent.
- Happy employees. In today’s day and age, keeping employees happy is more difficult than ever before. Unfortunately, disgruntled employees are less likely to work hard. By keeping workers happy, employers can ensure that they are getting their money’s worth.
Drawbacks of telecommuting for the employer
- Security problems. This is one of the biggest concerns among employers. In general terms, telecommuting can be defined as the act of electronically linking to a company. With this, security issues could arise. Procedures must be implemented to allow employee access while keeping out intruders.
- Lack of control. When you let an employee work at home you are giving them almost full control of their schedule. Worse yet, you will never know for sure if they are working hard or hardly working. If you cannot trust somebody who is telecommuting it may not be the best choice for your company.
- Inability to attend onsite meetings. On the surface, this appears to be a big drawback. If the employee is not in the office he/she cannot attend onsite meetings with coworkers and clients. However, this is not always true. If the employee lives locally, you can request that they attend any important meetings in person. Most are willing to do so if it means that they can telecommute the rest of the time.
If you are an employee interested in telecommuting, you should speak with your employer about the pros and cons detailed above. It is important for you to look at this situation from the point of view of your employer.
On the other hand, you may be in the difficult position of deciding whether or not an employee (or many employees) should be allowed to work from home. To make the best decision, weigh the pros and cons above while speaking individually with each party.
If you think you’re ready to potentially telecommute, check out this article regarding if your family is ready for the change.
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