As more and more businesses move toward offering their employees the choice to work from home, small business owners may wonder if implementing work-from-home options are right for their workplace. As of now, 63 percent of companies do have remote workers. This fact could be an indication that the traditional nine-to-five workday is shifting into something more flexible and more accessible to workers. So, what does a small business owner have to consider before making the call to begin having remote employees?

Why Having Remote Workers Might Be Right for Your Business

Remote workers frequently get paid by-the-project rather than hourly. This cuts down on time-theft, such as employees playing on their phones while on the clock. Being paid by-the-project generally means that remote workers are less expensive. Before it is time to pay for the work, a price is agreed upon, meaning the owner doesn’t have to worry about an employee staying late and adding overtime to their timesheet. Lastly, there is research that shows remote employees are as productive, and in some cases, more productive than those who work in the office. Because the commute is removed for work-from-home employees and shift start and end times can be more flexible, at-home employees are much less likely to be late or leave early. There are no coworkers to distract them, and distractions as a whole are cut way back when employees work from the comfort of their own homes.

Why Keeping Works In-House Could Be the Right Call for You

Still, working from home isn’t the right fit for every company. If a small business relies heavily on collaboration, having people work from home might hinder that creative process. Sure, there are so many video-call tools to utilize, but those create a different feeling and atmosphere from having in-person interactions. If communication and check-ins are a high priority, an office setting may be best. It can feel easier for an employee to miss a deadline and turn in late work if they are communicating their missed deadline through email rather than in person. Unfortunately, when communicating through a screen, people can lose sight of one another’s humanity. This can lead to forgetting to train an employee properly or even not having the resources to train and monitor a new worker properly. If the work being done is complex, in-person training may be needed.

The Bottom Line

There are pros and cons to every decision, of course, and it really comes down to what type of business is being run and what expectations and preferences a small business owner may have. If the work being done has clear written instructions and is mostly independent work, having remote workers can allow an owner to choose from a larger pool of talent while also reducing the amount of money they need to spend. If, however, a workplace environment is largely based on collaboration and teamwork, it can be a better option to have employees working in the office.

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