- Between 2012 and 2016, flexitime has risen by 12.35 per cent; and data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS)
- In 2015, 4.2 million people across a range of sectors worked from home, and businesses both small and large are increasingly adopted the remote working strategy into their model.
- A recent YouGov survey has revealed that only 6% of working Britons now put in the hours of 9-5. Instead, 73% work either part-time or with some form of flexible working arrangement (Deloitte and Timewise study).
- More than a third (39%) of people who mostly work from home often work additional hours to complete their tasks, compared with less than a quarter (24%) of those in fixed workplaces, according to 2017 research by Cardiff University
With all these statistics highlighting the changing workplace, is it no wonder that by 2020, 50% of the UK workforce will be working remotely!
Although some business owners are still concerned that, unwatched, their employee’s productivity will suffer, the opposite is in fact true. Productivity and morale increases exponentially, according to data from a new OddsMonkey report. Other studies support this fact, and suggest that happiness, motivation and sense of freedom are generally stronger among remote workers.
The benefits are indeed tangible and wide ranging. Vodafone conducted a global survey about flexible working back in 2016, revealing that companies who had implemented agile strategies:
- Increased company profits (according to 61% of respondents);
- Improved productivity (83%);
- Positively impacted company reputation (58%); and
- Improved staff morale (76%).
It’s clear that the working economy is in a period of flux as more people migrate to modes of working that offer them a better work-life balance and a schedule that fits around their own schedule. To prepare for this shift, businesses can start by seeing that they have the right connectivity capabilities in place to support a remote-working model.
Even the metropolitan police are now following these changes to workplace by recruiting part-time constables for the first time. BrewDog has launched a remote working initiative in six of its UK pubs, promising limitless coffee, printers, pens, paper and a pint.
Times are changing and companies need to ensure they are changing with the times as remote working is no longer a privilege but becoming a standard operating mode.
This is where a Virtual Assistant can also help by reducing costs with no training, holiday pay, sick pay, office space, office equipment and you only pay for the hours you need! In general, your Virtual Assistant can do so much more than simple office support. She can play an invaluable part in the growth of your business, really understanding what you need and how you like things to be done, anticipating your needs and preventing issues from arising.
As a business owner the best move you can make is recognising the benefits of hiring a virtual assistant for your business and look at remote/flexible working.