Recruitment is an industry that lends itself to remote working. With a phone and a laptop you can work from anywhere and travel to meet candidates and clients whenever and wherever needed. With the implementation of cloud based systems, video conferencing and smart phones becoming commonplace we are seeing more and more recruiters working from home, central office hubs and satellite offices meaning that agencies can tap into the best staff in the market rather than being restricted by geographical considerations.
A survey of business owners by Virgin Media Business predicted that 60% of office based employees will regularly work from home by 2022. However business owners are split on the issue of remote working. Some feel it is the future of the workplace. They can see the benefits for how we run our businesses and stay competitive in a changing market, while for others it poses a risk to company culture and productivity. So how is this increase in remote working affecting the workplace and the way we do our jobs.
With all our working days relaying heavily on technology there is no doubt that working patterns are changing and that remote and flexible working is on the increase. Some businesses now comprise solely of remote workers, with for others it is a mix that gives them the flexibility they need. A recent survey of remote workers suggested they were 13% more productive. This was put down to an increased sense of autonomy and reduced / wasted commuter time. However others are reluctant to put the level of trust needed in their employees when working remotely or simply feel that a collaborative face to face approach is what is needed for their business.
- Lower costs
- Low cost flexibility for start ups
- Increases productivity.
- Remote employees known to take less sick days, have a higher life satisfaction and sense of worth
- Commuting time is spent working rather than it being wasted time.
- Known to reduce employee stress
- Wider choice of candidates when recruiting staff
- Improvement of work life balance while maintaining or increasing effectiveness in the role.
- Lack of routine
- No work social life / team building
- Less team interaction and a loss of a feeling of community and shared values
- Communication challenges
- New management style will need to be implemented
- Impact on company culture
- Larger costs around technology and IT support
- Trust level needed.
- Recruit the right people. – Organised, focused, reliable motivated people with a strong work ethic are needed for remote working.
- Invest in Technology and IT training.
- Make it an integral part of the company culture – Everyone across the business needs to be onboard and buy into remote working.
- Management style is key. Remote working can be more challenging to manage, and make sure everyone is working towards the same goal, and that managers have the reassurance that their team are putting in the hours and delivering what they need. This is where a more forward thinking management style will come into play. This set up just won’t work for someone who micro manages their employees so there must be trust first and foremost. KPI’s and regular performance reviews can play an important part in monitoring performance.
- Virtual and in person meetings are a way to retain team working and ensure consistent company values and goals are met.
- Don’t think this will work from day one. Everyone must understand that there will be a certain time frame where everyone adjusts to the new ways of working and addresses any issues.
- Scheduling – strict guidelines on when meeting must take place and when employees must be on line will give remote workers a frame work and structure to ensure productivity.
- Lead by example – making sure all managers are easily contactable and transparent in the work they are doing from home.
- A physical presence is still key – Make sure the teams are brought together regularly.
- Measure productivity.
- Accept that some conversations need to happen in person, and that not all work can be done remotely.
- Ensure your clients understand the arrangement and are comfortable with it. That all staff are accessible and meet clients face to face whenever needed.
If you would like to have an informal discussion, please contact Nadine Tipping here about the roles we are currently working on.