If you’ve just launched a startup here in Australia, you’re probably wearing many hats; business founders tend to handle marketing, brand management, accounting, customer relations, product development, fundraising, and many other roles. You may soon face considerable pressure to hire more people and build a proper team.
Before you go about bringing new people into the office for full-time positions, have you considered allowing your employees to work remotely? Many employers may still hesitate to offer this sort of arrangement. It takes an element of trust; managers like to see their people being productive and going about their tasks the right way. You’ll also need to invest in an efficient network, including security and penetration testing – after all, you’ll be letting people from all over Australia access your files and resources. But for all the concerns which need to be addressed, remote work can be a great boost to your startup; here’s why.
Employee productivity goes up
When you allow your employees to work remotely, one of the biggest benefits they’ll appreciate is cutting the daily commute out of their routines. Depending on where they live relative to your workplace, this can effectively give them back a lot of time and energy that would otherwise be spent waking up early and dealing with rush hour traffic.
Working remotely offers flexibility; people can settle into their preferred routines, such as hitting the gym or jogging around the local park first thing in the morning, before getting to work. They have time to do chores and prepare home-cooked meals. This improves their well-being, which translates to more energy and focus on their work. Remote work improves productivity, and on average, employees spend even more time on their work when freed from the office environment.
You’ll save on costs
Renting commercial space for your office, especially in the state capitals, could easily be one of the biggest line items in your startup’s budget. Even if you’re initially running the entire startup out of your briefcase, once you begin hiring more people, the need for space increases. A growing team demands more furniture, workstations, peripherals, storage, and power consumption.
Allowing remote work can dramatically slash costs in this regard. You can collaborate and manage your team just as effectively without having to deal with an increasing logistical headache; each employee will be responsible for finding a suitable place to work.
It encourages diversity
Remote work allows you to connect and collaborate with people who offer a broader range of perspectives and abilities. It can also overcome communication barriers; many employees can find it difficult to voice their opinions and ideas in an office environment sufficiently.
Expert designers, software developers, and content creators from around the country can be tapped to contribute if you let them work from their current location; requiring collaborators to report to your office for full-time work limits the pool of talent available to you.
Talent acquisition and retention
According to a 2017 report, fully distributed companies take around one-third less time to hire new employees. This benefit carries over to retention; on average, you can expect around 25% lower employee turnover.
The chance to work remotely is highly attractive to most employees, so it’s easy to see how improved workforce morale can yield such improvements. And as your satisfied team members stick around longer, you’ll get to build more continuity and culture.
As long as you’re aware of what it takes to support remote workers, and take the necessary measures to address these concerns, your startup can enjoy amazing benefits from accommodating such arrangements for your employees.