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Several years into the largest ever working-from-home experiment, it’s clear many workplaces are unlikely to return to the way things used to be.

 
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The shift toward remote first companies

Remote First Workplace Practical Guide

Knowledge workers, who can potentially do their jobs anywhere, have made their feelings clear: they want the flexibility and autonomy to choose where they work. Their employers have gained access to a wider pool of geographically dispersed talent. And the WFH (work from home) movement doesn’t seem to be harming productivity or the customer experience. A survey of over 1,000 Australian workers found 74% want to work from home at least three days a week.

At the time of the research, 96% of knowledge workers were working fully remote or in a hybrid arrangement. When you consider just 5% of Australians reported working from home in the 2016 census, this is a truly transformational shift. But there have been challenges along the way. Social capital – the informal interactions that make work easier – is harder to replicate virtually. Some employees may be dealing with feelings of isolation, or find it difficult to set boundaries between work life and home life – leading to stress and potential burnout.

Others (including younger employees) may lack access to productive, distraction-free workspaces at home. It’s clear that finding a balance that works for your team and your business is important.

Remote First Workplace Practical Guide

Knowledge workers, who can potentially do their jobs anywhere, have made their feelings clear: they want the flexibility and autonomy to choose where they work. Their employers have gained access to a wider pool of geographically dispersed talent. And the WFH (work from home) movement doesn’t seem to be harming productivity or the customer experience. A survey of over 1,000 Australian workers found 74% want to work from home at least three days a week.

At the time of the research, 96% of knowledge workers were working fully remote or in a hybrid arrangement. When you consider just 5% of Australians reported working from home in the 2016 census, this is a truly transformational shift. But there have been challenges along the way. Social capital – the informal interactions that make work easier – is harder to replicate virtually. Some employees may be dealing with feelings of isolation, or find it difficult to set boundaries between work life and home life – leading to stress and potential burnout.

Others (including younger employees) may lack access to productive, distraction-free workspaces at home. It’s clear that finding a balance that works for your team and your business is important.

Four Benefits of having remote workers

 

Access a wider pool of talent across Australia.

 

Autonomy can encourage better performance.

 

Level playing field for all to communicate effectively.

 

Opportunity to significantly cut physical footprint and leasing costs.

 

Access a wider pool of talent across Australia.

 

Level playing field for all to communicate effectively.

 

Autonomy can encourage better performance.

 

Opportunity to significantly cut physical footprint and leasing costs.

Common questions on a remote working environment

What are the reasons employers should consider the shift towards remote friendly companies?

A remote friendly company can benefit employers in many ways. A physical office can be costly, and many jobs do not require this office space to run effectively. Remote friendly companies also do not rely on a physical location, and can choose top talent based on their skills and credentials without being limited by location. A remote first approach also has benefits for employees themselves, such as flexible working hours and eliminated commute, and this can result in improved employee retention.

What is a remote first culture?

A remote first culture refers to a business that offers employees a completely remote business model as part of their company culture. This means most or all employees will be working outside of a physical office. Some businesses may still have an office space, but this would be optional for a remote first workplace.

What are the benefits of remote work and remote teams?

Remote employees and remote team members often have a greater sense of work life balance. Remote employees do not need to visit physical offices, and this can reduce commute costs and stress. Additionally, remote first workplaces have distributed teams, meaning their living circumstances are not bound by work location. Those wishing to recreate the office experience can utilise a co-working space, while those who prefer remote working can take advantage of the benefits of being at home.

Need more help?

All advice is general in nature, for advice specific to your situation, please get in touch with one of our HR Partners.

Our team at Employment Innovations are able to offer tailored workplace advice. If you need any assistance with payroll processing, employment contracts, Modern Awards, enterprise agreements, workplace advice or require access to our full HR document library, contact us to speak with one of our HR experts.

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