On the surface, distributed or remote teams might seem like the latest workplace culture trend akin to foosball tables and casual Fridays. In reality, more and more employers are finding the benefits of hiring remote workers go far beyond the basic flexibility of working from home. The rise of distributed teams is creating an outcome-based culture and business are reaping the benefits including improved employee retention, productivity, and cost savings just to name a few.
Creating a results-based culture
When employees are held accountable for their time and the work they’re responsible for, they can focus more on the results and less on the politics of it all. This creates a corporate culture that de-emphasizes red tape and traditional corporate processes and fuels employees by rewarding them for getting things done. In a distributed environment, often times employees can choose what schedule and working conditions make them most productive and allows them to focus solely on the task at hand. As long as expectations are set, and deadlines are met, employees have the freedom of working where they are most comfortable and following processes that make them feel the most productive.
However, it also becomes the responsibility of the employer to hire the right kind of people who are independent and proactive to ensure that work is getting done without needing to be micromanaged.
Remote workers don’t require a brick-and-mortar place to call their office. Many of them work from their homes, coffee shops, libraries or co-working spaces. No main office means tons of savings on real estate costs, utilities, maintenance, office supplies and upkeep.
Without a physical office to attend to, companies can save up to $10,000 per year, per employee. This money saved can be reallocated towards technology and communication tools to keep their employees connected and productive throughout the day. In addition to companies saving money, remote workers can save an average of $4,000 a year on transportation costs, gas and car maintenance, and office attire.
As a business owner, you want your team to have a sense of joy and fulfillment in the work that they do, regardless of what the work entails. Remote teams regularly report higher employee retention and 95% of remote employees claim that being part of a distributed team has had a positive impact on their lives.
Employers who hire remotely also no longer will have to consider the liabilities of requiring workers to come in during inclement weather and will still have full productivity of their staff that would be tainted by a lengthened or dangerous commute. Additionally, remote workers are less likely to call in sick and workers with flexible schedules often save their employers money by reorganizing their days to get more rest when they need time off.
Hire top talent from across the globe
Lastly, companies with remote work initiatives have access to the largest talent pool available to them. They are not restricted to hiring within a certain geographic region, and do not have to accrue additional costs from relocating good employees.
When you’re employee search isn’t limited to one area, the talent pool opens exponentially. Companies with distributed teams have access to the best workers in the world. Their location does not have to affect the hiring process, and employers avoid costly relocation fees for the company and the worker. With start-ups and smaller companies, this is a huge benefit. Choosing the right people for your team is imperative in the early stages and limiting your search to one geographic region severely limits your access to high quality, talented candidates.
Remote work works. And while it may not be for every person or every industry, there are ways to create a productive environment that focuses on results and outcomes, without ever setting foot in a physical office.