Remote work began many years before the internet and personal computers were a common thing. Often referred to as remote work, virtual work, telecommuting, telework, work from home, or even to some degree hybrid work, is simply where an employee does not exclusively work in an office; rather they work from home or elsewhere. With the aid of smartphones, laptops, and the internet, people are regularly able to accomplish what was once done in a traditional office, outside. In fact, Tim Ferriss’ 2007 book, The 4-Hour Workweek, mentions the benefits of working a remote job which allows him to travel and live anywhere in the world. By 2020, remote work became a popular method for companies to overcome obstacles of COVID-19 and government shutdowns, by enabling their employees to work from home and dial into company virtual meetings. There are a plethora of benefits when it comes to working remotely. In this article, I will go over the top 5 reasons why remote work is excellent for most office workers.
In the traditional brick-and-mortar work environment, a person is tied down to their desk and locked in the office without respect for the employee’s personal time and freedom. Working remotely can give a person many opportunities for increased personal freedom, including leaving the virtual office to get coffee or tea or food, wearing anything when not in video meetings, the freedom to accomplish life’s ordinary chores without wasting time or a weekend, sleeping in longer, not requiring a vehicle to get to and from work, homeschooling children without the need of public schools to act as childcare, living out of range from the office, reducing or altogether eliminating toxic work-drama culture, and enjoying life without being stuck in after-work traffic.
It says a lot about a person who can complete 8 hours of work in half the time. It says even more about people who accomplish that work and ask for more. Working remotely allows a person to complete their work faster without distractions, and it benefits good employees who go above and beyond with a recorded trail of accomplishments. Remote work can also enable a person to seek additional work or volunteer with other organizations once their work for the day is completed, as long as it is not outside of contractual agreements. More work and volunteering means greater potential for career growth and advancement for a person, whether that is for their primary company or others. The freedom to work remotely enables a person to take courses, certificate programs, and additional work that can help them excel in their current career or desired career path.
Remote work provides a person more flexibility in their hours, while accomplishing more work for the company and for themselves. There are many distractions in the office that prevent a person from working an actual 8-hour day. According to a recent study, the average in-office employee only works 4 to 5 hours per 8-hour working day. This suggests most work can be accomplished in shorter durations than the standard assigned 8-hour workday. Employees who work remotely and complete their assignments in less than 8 hours have more time to enjoy their personal life. Of course, working remotely also enables a person to accomplish their daily chores and tasks throughout the day, which significantly reduces stress. Reduced stress is a value in and of itself that provides a great incentive for a person to stay with a company and to do what is necessary to excel in order to keep their job.
Voting With Feet
Working remotely can enable a person to move away from areas and states that are not thought to be their ideal. Whether that be politically, socially, economically, religiously, or personally, someone working a remote job has a significantly greater opportunity to move somewhere that better suits their needs. Remote work can enable individuals and families to move to places where real estate is more affordable, where taxes are less, and where they can better prepare for retirement. Why would a person working a remote job want to stay in a state that feels authoritarian, overtaxes them, or where they are forced to live paycheck-to-paycheck? Why would a person working a remote job stay where they are bored, where they are depressed, or where they feel they cannot be themselves? There are many reasons someone would want to move, and working a remote job can enable a person to make those changes. Whereas a traditional workspace would necessarily require a person to stay where the job is located.
Working remotely can save a person a significant amount of money every month. It can save on work clothes, transportation, fuel, auto insurance, food costs, and childcare, while simultaneously saving time. As mentioned above, remote work can also enable a person to move to a more affordable area further from the office, which can save a significant amount of money. A remote job allows a person to possibly work on other projects, a side hustle, acquire an education, or work another career. So, not only does working remotely save a person money, but it also encourages them to make more money and have the time to do it.
Overall, remote work is a great solution for improving quality of life, increasing personal freedom, encouraging career growth, embracing work-life balance, enabling a person to vote with their feet, and improving finances.