Remote and flexible working are becoming more and more popular for businesses across the UK. We took a look at how many people now work remotely or flexibly and the impact this has had on staff motivation in recent years.
According to the Office of National Statistics, flexi-time increased by 12.35% from 2012 – 2016. And last year, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) found that the number of people remote working had increased by nearly quarter of a million (241,000) over a decade.
Data from the ONS shows that 4.2million people regularly worked from home in 2015 with the majority of these employees working in agriculture, information and communication or construction. However, there are lots of other industries who also allow staff to work from home. For example, Target Internet are a digital marketing training company who have adopted a remote working strategy for their employees. Daniel Rowles, a lead coach from Target Internet has given us reasons why:
“We’ve made the choice to be a fully distributed company, meaning everyone on our team does all their day-to-day work from home.
This approach has proven effective in a number of ways. Our staff are happy to be free from the stress of commuting and to have the opportunity to work flexibly; it’s good for our budget and the environment, as we don’t have to keep an office running; and because we do much of our work online, it doesn’t negatively impact our operations.
This strategy has allowed us to expand our workforce, and pick those with the best talent rather than those who live near Brighton. All our staff meet up for meetings and socials, but remote working works best for us day-to-day”
However, despite the huge rise in people starting to work remotely, there are still people in the UK who don’t yet have the opportunity to work from home. But should they? There are various positives for remote working, both for the employee and the employer:
- Increased productivity – working remotely increases productivity by 16%
- Higher morale – a study showed that those who work from home love their job more than those who work in an office.
- Higher employee retention
- Less stress – 1 in 5 employees say that juggling their work and personal lives is the main cause of stress.
Paul King, OddsMonkey’s Founder and CTO (Chief Technical Officer) is a firm believer in remote working;
“In order for OddsMonkey to provide our customers with the best matched betting service available, we knew we had to put together a team of experts; people who really know their stuff and can help our members with in-depth advice. Matched betting is quite a niche interest, which means that you won’t necessarily find potential employees on your doorstep.
Remote working has played an integral part of this strategy, as it’s allowed us to identify and hire top matched bettors, all the way from Eastbourne to Edinburgh. Because we’ve been able to build the team in this way, staff are extremely productive as they’re genuinely interested in the job, with many of them effectively turning their hobby into a career.
We use a number of collaborative online tools to ensure communication is quick, clear and concise between our team members, whether they’re working from OddsMonkey HQ or their sofa.
Many studies have shown that remote working allows employees to be more productive and happier – having the choice to either work from the office or remotely, gives staff a sense of freedom.
“At our company, Moteefe, we’ve created a slightly different work from home policy – we allow our employees to work from home every Tuesday and Thursday without having to ask or state that they’re doing so. For many of us here in our London office, our commutes can take around an hour each way without traffic or tube delays! So, we’ve made it easier for our employees to have two very productive days in the comfort of their homes or in their favourite coffee shops.
To make it work effectively, we encourage our staff to over-communicate on these two days – everyone talks on Slack much more and many also fill out exactly what they’re doing on their Gmail calendars so that it’s completely clear as to what everyone is working on and how long it has taken them.”
Mathijs Eefting, CEO and co-founder of Moteefe