Many people and business owners have been working from home for a long time now, thanks to the advancement in technology that makes it possible for people to work remotely.
Now, with the pandemic, most organizations and their employees are doing the same. This raises the concern about whether working at home increases productivity or not. Working from home is somewhat new for some employers, and it is the reason why there are a lot of controversies.
How does working from home impact productivity?
The productivity of remote work is a vital concern for new remote workers. For a long time, office-bound workers have seen working from home as the ideal when it comes to flexibility. There are a lot of rigid 9-5 working hour rules that are avoided when working remotely.
But working from home has its own set of challenges that can potentially lower output. The most obvious is that the distractions available at home exceed those in a traditional office space.
From washing the dishes, preparing meals, and even walking the dog – it is easy to find excuses to put off work when you’re home alone. Also, when you add a spouse, kids, and pets to the mix, the distractions and interruptions can increase. However, there are some benefits to working from home.
Productivity benefits of working from home
The truth is that to be productive when working remotely, one has to be self-disciplined and self-motivated. In an office workspace, employees typically benefit from being surrounded by managers and other employees who can keep them on track.
But despite these challenges of working remotely, there are several benefits work-from-home offers to employees. These benefits can lead to more productivity.
1. It can increase your performance
According to research by Stanford, which followed the performance of 16,000 workers for 7 months, a 13% increase in productivity from the people working at home was recorded.
It also discovers that people were working more minutes and doing more work throughout the day. This is the biggest study ever carried out on remote work and productivity, and it was eye-opening for everyone. The people studied also shared their thoughts. They said that the home environment helps them to perform better.
2. Remote work increases productivity
In another study, 77% of remote workers claimed they had better efficiency and productivity. Even though the research was carried out based on the claims of the attendees, most of them felt they were more productive at home and that supports the data from the other survey.
3. Extra work is rewarded
When people begin working remotely, they intentionally put in more effort, which means that they will work harder and longer than they would ordinarily.
Some reasons for this include:
• They may view working from home as a luxurious privilege, and due to this, they would want to prove to their employers that it makes them more productive. By doing this, they will be more likely to keep the privilege.
• Employers who allow their workers to work remotely usually have some means of digitally tracking productivity. When employees know that they are being monitored, they tend to be on their best behavior.
4. Lower chances of taking time off
Studies also indicate that remote employees are 52% less likely to take time off from work. As working from home gets rid of the troubles of handling road traffic and the boring office space and it offers the opportunity of rolling out of bed and immediately beginning work.
Due to this, remote workers will barely need to cut off-work hours. It will also reduce the need for taking sick days off, which will have a huge impact on the levels of productivity.
5. No transportation
Averagely, commute time is 25 minutes each way or roughly an hour for a round-trip. Working from home gets rid of commute in most cases. Most employees see their commute as a vital part of their workday. Their 8-hour shift suddenly feels like a 9-hour shift.
Once this is eliminated, this will take away the stress and frustrations linked with it. Workers will feel like they have an hour of extra free time. As a result, they will spend extra time to handle tasks and projects of their own free will.
6. Communication can be refined
Remote work also forces people to efficiently communicate in most instances. When speaking to a coworker, rather than talking at the top of your voice across the hall each time you have a question or during meetings, you will have to think about what you want to say, and heavily depend on other methods of communication such as email and text messaging.
Often, this lowers the time it takes to have a full conversation and simultaneously improves the documentation of messages between coworkers and employers.
7. Over 80% of people prefer to work alone
A survey carried out by Ask.com discovered that 86% of workers prefer to work alone. A lot of people that work at home tend to work on their own. This means that they will capitalize on this and increase their productivity. Working alone also saves employees from distractions and interruptions from other people, this can increase performance.
8. Loud coworkers are a distraction people want to avoid
Those working in a physical office know how noisy the place can be during working hours. Some employees will interrupt your work repeatedly with on and off topics.
Working remotely helps employees to control the environment and helps them avoid irrelevant gossip and discussions.
9. Remote work removes the sources of stress
The comfort that the home environment offers can help to reduce working stress. About 82% of employees that work remotely admitted to having reduced levels of stress while working from home.
You will not have to deal with wearing formal clothes or deal with traffic if you can work remotely. These are some of the things that influence stress, and working from home can get rid of them all.
At the end of the day, remote workers can be more productive, less productive, or equally productive as office employees. As a business owner or leader in an organization, it is a great idea to track the productivity of both remote and office employees.
Related: Parents Working From Home