The New Norm of Working Remotely: An Interview with Bill Sarris
It’s no surprise that with the current state of the world, many industry professionals have been finding themselves working from home for an extended period. Although this started out as a burden for many companies to bare, employees are now beginning to realize that they can effectively and efficiently complete their day to day jobs from the safety of their homes. The question remains, could this be a new norm? What are the benefits of allowing employees to work from home and are there any drawbacks?
Working from Home vs. Working in the Office
Jaclyn King is a Digital Marketing Specialist who has found herself working from home for the past several months. She was curious about employee’s new perspective on working from home, so she created a poll on her LinkedIn account to ask for her network’s opinion.
Her poll stated, “It’s no surprise that many of us have spent the past few months working from home, but what has it taught you? Where do you feel you work more efficiently from?”
The three options to choose from were as follows:
- Working from home
- Working in the office
- Working partially from both
In the poll, which received nearly 50 votes, an overwhelming majority of those who responded voted for Option 3: Working partially from home and partially in the office.
In fact, the CEO of Sarris Chocolates, Bill Sarris, also responded, saying that he feels employees work more efficiently when it’s a mixture of both.
But what possible reason could employees and employers feel that they get their jobs done more efficiently from home? The truth is, there are so many positive impacts that working from home can have on not only employees but their companies as well.
The Benefits of Working from Home:
1. Ease of Mind for Employees:
With COVID-19 still being extremely prevalent, many employees are still practicing social distancing. They don’t want to feel forced to return to a work environment where they have the potential to be exposed to the virus. Working from home is providing employees peace of mind, as they know that their health and safety isn’t being put at risk. They are getting their jobs done efficiently while also being able to ensure the health and safety of their friends and family.
2. Less Interruptions:
According to an article written by the Entrepreneur, the average employee wastes anywhere from 30 minutes, to 3 hours, per day due to interruptions and distractions. Whether you’re having a conversation with a coworker, going to the restroom, getting up to get your coffee, or just walking around the office in general. When you’re in the office, it’s easy to get distracted from work that you need to be completing.
According to Bill Sarris, he also agrees that employees are more efficient while working from home.
“You stay focused on the task at hand when working from home. No one works 8 hours a day at work. They socialize, they take breaks, they get interrupted. But at home, they can do their work, and handle things around the house, as well.”
When working from home, employees are not faced with day to day distractions and are able to be more efficient. They aren’t getting up to talk to a coworker or taking frequent trips to the restroom. Instead, they’re able to focus on their tasks that need to be completed without the fear of interruption or distraction.
3. No Commute:
On average, employees can spend anywhere from 5-10 hours of their week commuting to and from work. Now imagine if employees were able to put that time back into their day. Workdays themselves can be anywhere from 8-12 hours in length, depending on the shift schedule.
When an additional hour or two of commuting per day is added, these employees are losing valuable time they could be spending with their families or completing household chores.
Allowing employees the opportunity to work partially (or completely) from home, you’re providing them valuable time they could be putting towards other chores or responsibilities in their lives.
4. Less Office Space Needed:
This is one of the ultimate benefits to employers when it comes to employees working remotely. Many companies are currently operating on a rotation, meaning that certain employees work in the office certain days, and at home for the others. This schedule results in less office space being needed for employees. In fact, if you put employees on entirely different operating schedules, you could cut your office required space in half.
It would also provide you the ability to hire more employees if you were once struggling to find office space for them. During our discussion, Bill Sarris stated:
“I think you will see a lot of companies reducing their office space and allowing more employees to work from home. There may even be a cost savings by reducing office space and seeing that employees have been more productive when working from home.”
Working from home has become the new norm and may continue to be for the foreseeable future. Once employers begin to recognize the benefits that working from home can have on not only the employees but their company as well, working from home could potentially last far longer than the effects of COVID-19.