CALL US: 216-397-4080  | CLIENT HELP DESK: 216-539-3686

The Future of Working Remotely

The Future of Working Remotely

Over the past couple of months, many employers have been forced deal with the reality of a remote workforce.  In many cases, employees proved that they could still be as efficient from home, while in other cases, technology proved to be a big issue. As states begin to re-open, the question has arisen: will business operations return to the way they once were? Let’s discuss.

“Productivity? From Home? Nah…”

At least, this was largely the opinion of many business owners, especially those with smaller organizations to manage. On the surface, this presumption makes sense: there are far more distractions in the home for employees to deal with, without any supervision to keep them on task. From children, to pets, to television, and video games, even to household chores, there are far too many ways for an employee to distract themselves and procrastinate.

Basically, work was the place that people worked hard, while at home they’d hardly work.

Of course, this wasn’t completely based on speculation. There are always going to be certain factors that influence how effective remote work can be. The style that management takes, how well-suited the business’ operations are to remote work, and yes, how engaged employees are in what they are supposed to be doing can all make a difference how well remote operations work for one company over another. However, many businesses and their employees have witnessed how effective remote work can be at maintaining (and in some cases, surpassing) their in-house levels of productivity.

That said, there’s the issue of company culture and communication. Let’s look at how the Ashton team has handled the change. Aside from those ‘holding down the fort’ in Beachwood, OH, our engineers were told on March 15th that they would be working from home for the foreseeable future. The State of Ohio went into lockdown on March 22nd. The vast majority of the services we provide are offered remotely, so working from home-or the office-didn’t make much of a difference. However, our team had been pulled apart. Even with daily 8AM Teams video chats, hundreds of one-on-one messages, occasional virtual get-togethers (and Friday happy hours) we were missing the face-to-face team interaction and communication.

In an organization where “culture eats strategy for breakfast”, it was difficult for us to be apart, no matter how efficient we were. Fortunately, as of mid-May, we’re back in the office, and planning for what the future of #WorkFromHome looks like for Ashton.

Not All Businesses May Experience These Impacts

Of course, some businesses put remote work and telecommuting in place awhile ago, with different options available for their employees to use. While it may take a much shorter time than many experts initially expected, we may see more businesses start to follow their lead. Some might continue an exclusively remote operation from here on out, while others may simply give their employees the option to work from home as they choose, or permit one or two days working at home on a weekly basis.

The benefits can be mutual. For the employee, the opportunity to work remotely is a big perk, and may become something more sought out when looking for a job. For the business, there are some considerable cost savings that could be realized. Think of all the different things the traditional work environment demands you invest into:

  • Real estate, either owned, rented, or leased.
  • Electricity, HVAC, and other utilities.
  • Hosting the technology infrastructure required to support your operations.
  • Furnishings, amenities, and the equipment needed.
  • Snacks, of course.

Add in the countless other expenses that you pay for, and you’re throwing a lot of money into simple maintenance. By switching to a cloud-based infrastructure, hosting virtual meetings or finding a shared space to use as needed, you may find the potential savings are worth the change.

But do those savings come at a cost? That’s up to you to decide.

Whichever Route You Take, We’re Here to Help

We’ve worked with businesses who have (and who haven’t) switched to remote operations long before the current situation forced their hand. As such, we are a great resource for any business looking to shift their processes to something more sustainable.

If you’re curious about your options for working from home, give Ashton Solutions a call.

Related Posts