I spent over three weeks traveling in China and Europe for work which was great to see these countries and be working with some amazing people doing some great work. The challenges of different time zones and digital connectivity were daunting to keep connected to fellow employees and clients that are half away around the world.
Working in the car is different. Getting on a conference call is no big deal while driving, OK you should be doing it hands-free, but trying to do a lot of the things you usually do in your office is not anywhere as easy. I recently have taken a new job, and it is great, but I need to drive back to HQ occasionally and is a six hours drive each way making for some long days and nights too.
Have you already started to let employees work outside of your offices? Sure, Sales have been doing it forever. But what about the jobs that have not traditionally been done somewhere else. In today’s hyper-connected world, it is almost impossible for a business not to be working from everywhere, but the question is: are you covering your corporate rear-end?
Remote Worker is Trending Upwards
Many companies have just let employees start to remote work, so it just happens without planning or forethought. Have put together some standard teleworking forms that employees sign and quickly forgot about? With about 3.4 million people in the USA alone working remotely as employees, you can double that number if you include freelancers (Independent Contractors). As an employer, you need to have a well-thought-out set of policies and tools to ensure your business is covered.
Remote work for Employer Impact
As an employer, you gain benefits and take some minuses
Less office space costs
A wider selection of candidates for those positions that require specific skills and abilities.
Happier employees, studies show that workers that can work from home are more productive, happier, and work longer hours than their office-based colleagues.
Collect sales taxes if an employee’s physical location can put create a taxable location for the business. If you have just one employee in a state then the state can claim that you have a business presence in the state and require you to collect taxes or comply with the local laws within the state like labor laws.
Manage Income Taxes and other Employee costs that must be paid by the employer for the employee in a different location.
Time Zones Just how remote is remote? If the employee is far away you may only have small windows of overlapping times in which to collaborate live. Otherwise, you need to make sure the work can be done asynchronously.
We have been helping companies do the planning, implementation, and learning to thrive with a remote workforce no matter where their team member is in the world.
What is your company’s Remote Work look like? Please share it with us here in the comments section below.
What does it mean to you to be a Remote Worker? At 2BMobile have been working on our definition of what Remote Work means to us. We consider it a catch-all phrase that covers all worker that does not perform work at their employer’s place of work. That is a broader definition than many other terms currently in use by people.
Examples of all the names used; telecommuter, teleworker, home-base, co-work worker, and Internet worker all describe someone who trading the employer’s workplace for another fixed base of work.
Whereas terms like road warrior, nomad, digital nomad and etc imply that the worker is in some state of travel and is not normally confined to a fixed location.
All these different labels used by experts tend to splinter these workers into many groups, both in their minds and by institutions that count them separately. At 2BMobile, we do not see it that way. Instead, we see working outside of the employer workplaces as one continuum of employee’s work options.
Different types of workers have different needs to function well as a remote worker. Working from home and not traveling needs focuses on a broadband connection, workspace, and balancing family during regular working hours. At the same time, workers that travel a great deal need the portability and convenience of always having available access to broadband in different areas with very different levels of broadband availability and even access to it based on their provider’s coverage.
What type of remoter are you? What are your challenges in being a Remote Worker?
When I started 2BMobile, we were thinking about mobility as freeing professional people from their offices by using mobile devices; smartphones, laptops, and Netbooks (what are they?). Today with smartphones and tablets in the hands of almost everyone, mobility has taken a giant step forward in the quest of a truly virtual worker and Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) to work. The apps keep driving the independents from any one physical device to allow us the freedom to pick up where ever and whenever we want to.
Ok, the communication part is not perfect, I still can get caught in black holes of cellular and WiFi connectivity but even they are greatly improved in terms of speed and coverage.
One dimension of our quest for the genuinely virtual worker though has not leaped forward as the technology has and that is the physical limitation of a physical world. I may be connected almost anywhere electronically but being too far away from the metropolis of the world has a direct impact on your ability to perceived as viable by your clients.
Over the upcoming months of 2018, we will investigate what it means to be mobile in a technologically advanced world.
What is your opinion on the state of mobility today? Please give me your thoughts and comments below.