There are two big trends in the workplace that are definitely here to stay – allowing employees to work from home, and hiring those who already do: freelancers. Both of these trends carry a myriad of benefits for both the employee and the employer, which is why they’re shaping the workplace of the future, especially as technology keeps advancing. In fact, a recent study found that by 2028, 73% of all teams will include at least some remote employees.
If you’re considering letting your employees work from home or if you’re establishing a business with remote offices, take a look at our list of benefits below. We came up with the top reasons to offer flexible work options to your employees, as well as the best reasons to hire freelancers.
The benefits of having a remote workforce
Increased productivity. People who work from home often face less interruptions during the day than they would if they were in a traditional office setting. With less distractions they’re able to work quicker and get more done.
Happy employees work from home. Studies have shown that people who work remotely are generally happier with their job. Many employees site having more autonomy and flexibility for better work/life balance. It probably doesn’t hurt that there’s no rush hour traffic to contend with. And happier employers can mean greater profits for business.
Less overhead cost. By having a remote staff, you’ll save money because you won’t have to pay for extra office space. You’ll also save by not having to pay utility bills and for office supplies or those office snacks and coffee. If you aren’t able to switch to an entirely remote office, consider staggering your employee’s remote and in-office days to save on office expenses.
You can hire the very best. The job candidate pool gets a whole lot wider when your employees can live anywhere. Depending on your industry, you may have better luck finding your best employees by posting your job listing in parts of the country where your ideal candidate might live. For example, if you own a software company or need tech-savvy workers, you might want to make sure candidates in the Pacific Northwest and Silicon Valley know you’re hiring.
It’s better for the planet. Long commutes to and from the office can lead to stressed out employees. And those drives aren’t doing any favors for the environment, either.
You can save on salaries. In a recent poll, 36 percent of the participants said they would take a pay cut if it meant they could work from home. Simply put, remote work is a popular choice and many employees are willing to make adjustments so they can work on a regular basis outside of the office.
A technically savvy workforce. When you work remotely, understanding how to use the latest communication technology is important. Most employees who are used to working from home are more than familiar with the newest technology and they welcome new ways of communicating.
And this leads us to our next point, which in itself is another big trend: A remote workplace is perfect for freelancers.
The benefits of hiring freelancers
Independence. When you hire a new employee, they usually need a period of time to adjust and training before they can start fully contributing to the company. Freelancers, however, come already prepared and are used to working independently. Typically, once you set the expectations for the freelancer’s assignment, they’ll thrive on their own.
Experience. Freelancers usually come with a lot of experience, having worked for a variety of companies and often in a variety of capacities as well. Each assignment is an opportunity for the freelancer to learn something different, and they bring that new experience with them to the next job.
Boost employee productivity. Few things can inspire a permanent employee to do a better job than a new colleague who delivers great work from day one. That being said, usually freelancers enhance and support the work your fulltime employees are doing, which doesn’t lead to resentment but rather relief, because they’ve got someone on hand to help lighten the workload.
Affordability. There are very little overhead costs to work with a freelancer. Usually, they will work for a fair base pay, and while it’s often more than an hourly – or daily rate – of a salaried employee, it’s still a very affordable option because freelancers don’t require healthcare or other major benefits.
You can try out talent. Hiring someone fulltime is a big decision. Before you make it, why not test the waters by having potential future employees freelance first? That way, by the time they join the company, they’ll be familiar with its protocols and won’t require much additional training.
If you’re finally in the market to hire a fulltime employee, you needn’t look any further than your top freelancers. Who knows? Maybe one of them is ready to take on a fulltime job. But fair warning: they’re probably going to want to work from home.