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Companies Work At Home - Companies' Work at Home Trends Take Hold

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Technology and cultural changes in the United States have led to a significant number of companies allowing employees to work at home instead of commuting into jobs which was the norm until recent years. Specialized computer software and email have made flexible workplaces possible, leading to a big savings for many companies. Without the expense of renting office space (or being able to rent a smaller space), gives the employer an added benefit, and employees tend to be happier too. Remote workers feel they are trusted more by their employer, and over 70% say they are proud to work for their company, which is a slightly higher percentage than office workers. All of that employee satisfaction helps a company to hold on to their staff and avoid turnover.

When companies let employees work at home, families win too. Both parents in many families have jobs, and childcare responsibilities dictate that schedules be juggled to make the most of work time while still allowing for family time. Telecommuting improves the hectic rush of many working parents, and can often cut childcare costs immensely. The time gained from not commuting to work increases family time, and improves relationships. This in turn leads to stress reduction and more productivity for the employer.

Working from home means that employees can complete projects by given deadlines, but can often choose to work at odd hours of the day or night as it suits them. Tech companies have led the way, allowing remote workers the flexibility of working from their own home offices, which could be located anywhere in the world. Workers known as “creatives” often get their best ideas when they are inspired, rather than by the clock. Studies have shown that allowing this type of worker freedom to be creative in a natural flow, which is nurtured by an environment outside an office, results in more innovation and profits for the employer.

Although there are some downsides to working from home (you can’t escape your work, for instance, and you can be distracted or find yourself standing in front of the refrigerator too often), most employees really like the idea of companies’ “work at home” policies. A study conducted by Cisco found that 60 percent of American workers believe they would be just as productive without going into an office to work. In other countries, the percentage was even higher. Other studies find that workers who telecommute report the highest level of satisfaction with their companies, and 56% said they do not plan to search for another job within twelve months, while only 44% of office workers say the same.

Some benefits of working at home extend beyond the employer/employee relationship. Commuting is eliminated, leading to fewer vehicles causing traffic jams on the road, fewer gallons of gasoline consumed and less pollution. Automobile maintenance and highway repair costs are both reduced. Energy savings are realized by avoiding the costs of lighting, heating and cooling office buildings.

Working at home may allow the freedom of adjusting the worker’s schedule so that doctor appointments, for instance, do not reduce the number of hours worked per day. In fact, it has been shown that companies with work at home and flex time policies actually get more productive work from their staff. Recruiting employees also becomes simplified when companies are not limited to local job candidates.

Not everybody can work at home for their company, but some jobs just seem made for home offices. Sales representatives who travel a territory are often based out of a home office. Other workers, such as writers, online marketers and IT personnel, can telecommute or turn in projects electronically as required. Virtual assistants must work remotely, performing important tasks for busy executives who need help answering phones and scheduling appointments.

Self-employed individuals often work at home offices, either full or part-time, and have even more control over their work/home balance. Self-motivation and persistence are necessary for these entrepreneurs to become successful, however. Freelancers and other independent contractors performing jobs for companies, work at home on their own schedules and often get paid for a project rather than a salary or hourly wage. This type of job arrangement can work well for both parties.

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