After the recession hit in 2008 and I was laid off, my desires shifted a bit when it came to my ideal working situation. To make ends meet, I would freelance and handle client matters by working from home. All I needed was my laptop, laser printer, cell phone and internet connection and I was in business!
I later went to work for a firm that “allowed” me to work from home on Mondays and Fridays. We were growing with personnel at the time and space became an issue, so I volunteered to give up my workspace for an intern who came in on those days. I could still work the same amount of hours, bill the same amount of hours and take the same amount of calls from the comfort of my own home and it was wonderful. Technology allowed all of this to happen.
I did not have to get dressed. I did not have to rush to NJ Transit to head int NYC and I could use my “break” time to wash dishes or do a load of laundry. Also, I did not feel anxious or upset with having to complete work assignments at 11:00pm, as I was in the comfort of my own home and not in an office wishing I was at home.
It was an ideal work situation for me at that time and it proved that work could be completed without necessarily having to be “in the office,” despite what Yahoo! CEO, Marissa Mayer says. In fact, it should come as no surprise that the 2013 Regus Global Economic Indicator of 26,000 business managers across 90 countries, revealed that 48 percent of them are now working remotely for at least half of their work-week.
In support of what I learned from experience, and as highlighted in a recent Forbes.com article, here are eight “indisputable reasons we do not need offices.” Like to hear them, here they go!
New technologies are allowing employees to “connect to work,” meaning that the only thing we need to get our jobs done is an internet connection. From there we can access all the people and information we need to do our jobs. We can have virtual meetings, create assets (documents, presentations, or anything else), get updates from our team, and stay connected to our global workforce without daily face to face interaction. Additionally collaborative technologies allow us to work while we are on the go from our mobile devices.
New Generation Of Workers
Millennials are projected to be the majority of the U.S. workforce by 2020–just a few years away. This is a generation that is used to being connected. Millennials grew up with social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Google and they are comfortable sharing and engaging with people and information; it’s a part of our daily life. This is a generation that doesn’t know what it’s like to get 200 emails a day while sitting in a cubicle. Organizations need to adapt to this employee.
A More Attractive Workplace
Chances are that if you were to ask someone if they would rather work from an office or from their home, they would say their home (or co-working spot). In a recent report released by my company Chess Media Group, we found that 90 percent of workers believe that an organization offering flexible work environments is more attractive than an organization that does not. For organizations that want to attract and retain top talent it almost seems essential that employees not be required to work full-time from an office.
Companies Save Money
Companies spend a massive amount of money on real estate space to house their employees. TELUS, a telecommunications company based in Canada, has a global goal of making a majority of their workforce work remotely either full-time or part time. They want to get rid of some of their massive buildings that they are spending a large amount of money on. Companies also have to spend money on office equipment, internet, amenities, and a host of other things. Depending on the size of the company the potential cost savings here is in the millions per year for a single company.