How Effective is Remote Work?
Remote work has exploded in popularity over the last couple of years, as businesses were forced to close offices during the pandemic. About 16% of companies are fully remote, with 44% not allowing any remote work at all.
But many people are skeptical- can remote work function as well as traditional office work?
Although there is not yet enough research to draw definitive conclusions, most existing studies suggest that remote work, when done properly, can be at least as effective as office work. This is because the advantages of remote work make up for its disadvantages.
In any case, remote work will only continue to grow in popularity. Organizations will find better ways of conducting remote work, and people will design technology for making it easier.
JetRockets is a 100% remote work-friendly business, and we also operate an office in Batumi, Georgia, for interested employees. We believe that this hybrid model provides the best balance between remote and office work.
Remote Work Advantages
Like anything else, remote work has advantages and disadvantages. Remote work has pros and cons for both employees and their companies.
The main advantages of remote work include:
- Saving time on commuting
- Greater flexibility in time and location
- Fewer distractions from other people in the office
- Improved sense of well-being (an incredible 88% of workers say remote work has increased their job satisfaction)
These advantages mirror the disadvantages of office work. Office work entails commuting, inflexible location, and distractions from other people.
Remote Work Disadvantages
As the skeptics point out, remote work also has disadvantages. These include:
- Less face-to-face time
- Fewer serendipitous interactions
- Technical problems
- Scheduling and time zone issues
Office work has opposite advantages. In-office workers get more face-to-face time, more serendipitous encounters, and fewer problems with video calls and time zones.
Remote work is especially helpful for stay-at-home parents who want to spend more time with their kids. Employees with young children are more likely to prefer remote work models.
Are remote workers productive?
In general, yes. While not enough research has been done, and remote work productivity likely varies widely across industries, much information suggests that remote workers are no less productive than office workers.
In fact, at least one study has suggested that remote work may increase productivity by up to 22%. The reasons are pretty clear:
- Less time spent commuting means more for working.
- Office culture and chit-chat can be distracting.
- A greater sense of well-being encourages productivity.
What’s wrong with offices?
There is nothing intrinsically wrong with offices. Humans have worked together in bureaucratic or office-like settings for thousands of years, and the rise of remote work won’t change that.
However, offices vary widely in their quality, culture, and location. A grey cubicle is not as pleasant a setting as an open-space office with a view. A toxic workplace is not as uplifting as a positive, creative environment. And a distant office is harder to get to than one near employees’ homes.
The best offices may offer lots of advantages compared to remote work. But cramped, distant, or unfriendly spaces do not. Whether or not a worker will want to work at the office depends a lot on the nature of the office itself.
The future of remote work
Remote work has existed in some form or another for a long time, but only since the COVID-19 pandemic has remote work become a widespread, mainstream reality. Organizations are still experimenting to find the right balance, and new technologies are creating options that did not exist before.
Many companies may choose to go fully remote, and completely eschew physical locations. Others will adopt hybrid solutions, with smaller offices and regular remote options. A few will continue to rely on an exclusively physical workforce, probably if their industry requires in-person work. And new technologies like the Metaverse could open up new possibilities that do not even exist right now.
JetRockets is 100% Remote-Work Friendly
We offer all employees the option to work remotely. And we operate an office in Batumi, Georgia for workers who want an in-person experience. This hybrid work model gives our developers the freedom they need to choose how to do their work.
This freedom of choice reflects our operating model as a Teal organization. In a Teal organization, workers make their own decisions about how to work and contribute based on their own unique capabilities. We believe that this model lets developers operate at their creative maximum.