I’ve been a big fan of working from home over the years. Even though I go to the office on an almost-daily basis, I find that when I work from home I’m able to get a lot more accomplished.
As I research this for my company as a possible option, I find that there are a lot of reasons why it’s good for a business to let employees work from home. Here are some of the best reasons I’ve found for letting your employees work from home at least once a week:
1. They’ll waste less time commuting.
Cutting out a commute can be both a huge morale booster and a huge time saver. Employees will also waste less money on gas or public transportation.
2. They’ll be more productive.
One Stanford study found that employees who work from home are 13 percent more productive compared with their in-office counterparts.
3. They’ll be happier.
Everyone seems to be talking about work-life balance these days, and there’s no better way to improve the work-life balance of your employees than to let them work from home.
4. It’s easier than ever.
You can be connected to the office every minute of every day if you want to, thanks to the Internet. The concept of working from home might have seemed outlandish 20 years ago, but this is the 21st century. You can find access to wifi almost anywhere, and tools like GoToMeeting and Skype make remote communication a breeze.
5. You won’t have to pay for office space.
Working from home means either no office or at the very least, a lot less office space. If you don’t want to make the switch to a completely remote environment, try staggering your employees’ work-from-home days to save on office space. Automattic dedicates the money saved on office space to fund a huge travel budget.
6. You won’t have to pay for office supplies.
No one likes doing bulk orders for office supplies. By having employees work from home, you can cut out a lot of these useless expenditures.
7. You won’t have to pay for office snacks.
Same goes for office snacks as office supplies. IBM has saved about $100 million annually since beginning its remote-work program.
8. No more wasting time on useless meetings.
Remember the productivity thing? Well, a lot of that comes from cutting all the useless meetings and other time wasters that are ubiquitous in an office environment.
9. You can hire the best, no matter where they are.
No office means the ability to work with anyone in the world. Freelance networks like Toptal (with its notoriously tough location-independent screening process) have capitalized on this concept by connecting top companies with the very best software developers from all around the world.
10. Your employees will be less likely to quit.
Working from home makes employees happier. Happy employees don’t quit. Simple logic.
11. You might get some good PR from it.
Yahoo was all over the news when it stopped its working-from-home program -- but most reactions were negative. Try instituting a work-from-home program, and you might get some positive PR out of it.
12. There are tons of product-management services for remote teams.
13. You can get increased insight into other markets.
When you have employees working all over the country, or even all over the globe, you can get amazing insight into local markets.
14. Employees from other companies will be jealous.
They might even quit their own jobs to come work for you. Who knows?
15. You don’t have to go all or nothing.
If a 100 percent work-from-home environment isn’t in the cards for your business, try giving employees that opportunity to work from home once a week or a few days out of the month. Most of the benefits listed here will still apply. These 100 companies all offer work-from-home options, but very few are completely remote.
16. It will increase employee loyalty.
Almost anyone who has had the chance to work from home would never dream of giving it up. By giving your employees this chance, they will be extremely loyal to your company.
17. Employees will take fewer sick days.
Colds and food poisoning make going into the office miserable, but working from home? Not so bad. Employees who are mildly sick can still get work done most of the time if it means not having to go into the office. Another bonus? No sharing illnesses.
18. Employees won’t constantly feel the need for a vacation.
Working from home can feel like a break from the office, even though your employees are still working. Employees will get to recharge and spend more time with their families, so they might not be as inclined to take a two-week vacation to the Bahamas. Americans work more than anyone, but offering a work-from-home option might keep your employees from getting too burned out.
19. Employees will work longer on a day-to-day basis.
Remember commuting? If you work from home, you’re at your office right when you wake up. The time that your employees would spend commuting can now be used for real work.
20. Having employees work from home means you get to work from home.
The best benefit? You can access all the perks on this list along with your employees.