December 26, 2012 | 4 minutes

Allow Employees to Telecommute with Virtual Offices!

virtual officesTwo-thirds of Americans want to telecommute, according to a survey taken earlier this year by remote support and online meeting software provider TeamViewer. With so many working Americans wanting the option of working from home, or at least working from somewhere other than the cubicle, you’d think that more companies would be offering the option. After all, technology is making it easier to do so, and there are more options for telecommuters than just the home office (virtual offices, coffee shops, coworking spaces etc.) So, why isn’t your company doing this? Why are you making them waste time and energy and resources going to and from the office, stressing them about arriving on time and getting everything done before the kids go to bed?

Why Allow Employees to Telecommute with Virtual Offices?

Because it actually works! According to a different TeamViewer survey on telecommuting (this one from earlier this month), those who telecommute experience a wide range of benefits, such as:

  • Improved work/life balance – 53%
  • Lower stress and better health – 51%
  • Ability to complete household chores (e.g., laundry) while working – 50%
  • No involvement in office gossip – 37%
  • Ability to be near children during the daytime – 25%

Interestingly, the biggest benefit of all was saving money on gas and having no daily commute, which said by a whopping 80% of those surveyed. Those sound like great things to have in your workers, especially since many companies don’t offer daycare services and are asking their employees to work longer hours or to do more because of reduced staffing. Does it really matter where they do it, or even when they do it, as long as it gets done well and on time?

What People are Willing to Sacrifice

Of course, something as great as telecommuting shouldn’t come without a compromise or a sacrifice, and that’s exactly what Americans are willing to do. According to the survey, here’s what folks said would be willing to give up in order to telecommute:

  • Social media – 34%
  • Texting – 30%
  • Chocolate – 29%
  • Smartphone – 25%
  • Shopping – 20%
  • A salary increase – 17% – Not bad when considering that those who telecommute are less likely to get promoted
  • Half of their vacation days – 15%

Therefore, companies can rattle off all the reasons they want to keep people working in the office (meetings need to be in person, we want to keep an eye on people, we don’t want people to start slacking off, we can’t afford it etc.). However, this is something that workers, probably your workers want, and it’s also something that could make them better and more loyal worker as well. Headhunters and recruiters are always on the prowl for great talent, and if that great talent has a choice between a company that has telecommuting and one that, it’s an obvious choice. There’s also no need to fret about losing productivity as according to the most recent TeamViewer survey, 73% of telecommuters are more productive or much more productive.

Setting Them Up with the Virtual Office

Granted, not everyone has a spare room to use a home office, and not everyone wants to work at the coffee shop. Even if they did have a spare room, it does cost some money to set them up with the right tools. Make all that easier on your employees and your bottom line by using virtual offices. Virtual offices come with everything necessary to do work outside of the office, without having to risk company reputation to clients or complaints from employees who don’t have the necessary tools. Virtual offices could save you more money than you realize, as if you have employees telecommuting and using virtual offices, then you don’t have to spend so much on the headquarters and on the office tools and supplies needed to keep everything going. So, why not allow employees to telecommute? It sounds like a win-win for everyone.

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