Flexibility, cost savings, no commuting, increased retention, fewer personal/sick days and increased productivity are some good reasons why we should let employees work from home.
But what about the question of productivity? I’m still not sure of that answer, but I believe offering employees the option of working from home depends on the position, person and how much you want to influence your company culture.
We all know that working from home will allow employees flexibility and some will take advantage of their situation. But some employees are so disciplined that they give more to their employer. They set themselves up for success by minimizing their personal disruptions at home. So as an employer I could benefit even more by giving this employee flexibility to work from home.
Allowing your employees to work from home really depends on your company and the roles within it. You really need to set up the situation well by having clear objectives about role duties, how and when to communicate, measurable goals and instituting an audit system. At McNak, we have two positions that could allow a person to work exclusively from home. Ironically, these employees choose to work at the office knowing there is flexibility to work from home for some emergency cases. They like to be around our office “buzz” and say our corporate culture is one of the driving forces that makes their work so enjoyable. When they do work from home, they find it isolating, difficult for communication and leaves them feeling disconnected from the team. They miss the office dynamics.
In the end, allowing for a flexible work schedule must work for both parties, but use it with caution because it could negatively affect the company’s results and ultimately its culture.
This excerpt was featured in Business in Vancouver’s Ask the Experts column. Read the full article here.
Photo: H Sterling Cross