Remote work is one of the hottest trends in the workplace, with 3.7 million employees (about 2.8% of the total workforce) working from home at least half half the time, according to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com. Telecommuting jobs, that is, those that don’t require an onsite presence, are among the most sought-after positions in today’s job market. Many professionals are willing to work for lower compensation in exchange for saving time and expense on commuting, dry cleaning, and lunches out.
This all makes sense, and is part of a larger paradigm shift in the way that we think about working. The advantages of working for a company that may be located across the continent are many and fairly obvious. But there are challenges as well, including an unstructured environment loaded with distractions, and a lack a professional facilities such as a office space to meet clients. These concerns are being addressed more and more by the use of co-working spaces, which provide a variety of benefits for remote employees and the companies they work for.
- Increased Productivity
While many workers prefer and even crave the relaxed atmosphere of their homes, it’s not always the most conducive environment in which to work. We tend to be more relaxed in our own homes, which has its pros and cons in this context. In a co-working space, however, there is a general tone of a professional environment, and less of the distractions associated with one’s own home, including family members, pets, and a variety of other chores and household responsibilities. Deskmag, the online magazine of co-working spaces and people, reported that 71% of workers surveyed found that their productivity and creativity increased when they started using a co-working space, and 68% felt that they were able to focus better.
- Increased Collaboration
Remote work, though it has its advantages, can be somewhat isolating. The lack of co-workers to interact with may leave remote employees feeling disconnected and even lonely. Relocating them to a co-working space brings interacting and even the opportunity for collaboration with other professionals. Even though they may work in an entirely different field, the mixing together of professionals from other backgrounds and talents fosters an environment in which ideas are exchanged and networking is increased.
- Increase in Well-Being
In these days of long work hours, taking work home, and even working vacations, the concept of maintaining a “work-life balance” has become more important than ever before. It can be difficult indeed to maintain that balance when you’re spending most of your waking hours either working away from your home and family or commuting to your job. But working at home isn’t necessarily the antidote, as it may tip the scales too far in the opposite direction, diverting the employee’s attention more to home and family than work. Moving your remote employees to a co-working space provides an increased sense of camaraderie by allowing interaction with other professionals. Though they may be working on entirely different types of projects, the assembly of hard-working and creative individuals encourages an exchange of ideas and positive energies that remote employees typically won’t find at home or at their local coffee shop.