We live in a world in which we ask our phones for advice and we start our car’s engine while we’re still in the house. Best of all? We don’t need to have any clue where we’re going, so don’t bother asking me what route I took on the highway. I have no clue.
What a time to be alive.
In the whirlwind of convenience and information, a new (fantastic) trend is taking place – working remotely. But what does working remotely mean?
Working remotely is when someone does their job at a location other than the office (at home, a coffee shop, etc.). Since 2005, the number of people working remotely (not counting self-employed) has increased by 140%. After commuting 1.5 hours each way for two years, I’ve thankfully been able to worke remotely full time for the past two years.
I was born in the right decade, I guess.
Is working remotely (also referred to as ‘telecommuting’) something you’d like to do? Now that you know what it is, let’s put everything into context.
Working Remotely: The Workplace of the Future
What’s behind the movement?
In America, we often talk about “work-life balance”. Unfortunately, it definitely feels like the scale tips in work’s direction for many people. This is especially true for people dealing with a tough commute. Remote work can help ease this burden on employees.
While the work-from-home movement isn’t taking hold across all industries, there is a general trend in the overall workplace. According to a Gallup survey, 43% of employed Americans spent part of their week working remotely in 2016, which is 4% higher than in 2012.
Among remote workers, 90% of them plan to do it for the rest of their career and 94% encourage others to try it. To them, the biggest benefits are a flexible schedule (43%), spending time with family (15%), and being able to travel (12%). These reasons help explain why employees are pushing their employers to change the way (and the place) business is done.
Despite the fact that 64% of companies think their company has the resources to support a remote workforce, 57% of them don’t have a remote work policy. This illustrates how slow a transitioning economy can move. On the bright side, companies that do make use of remote work policies enjoy employee retention rates that are 25% higher.
Being able to work remotely is becoming an increasingly influential factor in whether an employee will leave or take a job.
As great as it sounds, working remotely isn’t all fun and games. Remote workers said that loneliness (21%), trouble collaborating with coworkers (21%), distractions at home (16%) and staying motivated (14%) were the biggest struggles they dealt with on a daily basis. As someone who works remotely full time, these downsides don’t outweigh the benefits for me.
How to start working remotely
I was fortunate enough to join the insurance industry straight out of college, which is embracing remote work more each year. I had a unique set of circumstances that led me to where I am today, but I believe that anyone in the right situation can put themselves in position to work from home full-time.
If you’d like to learn more, check out my guide on how you can work remotely full-time.
All opinions expressed on this blog are solely those of Home at 30 and are in no way affiliated with any other organization or institution. The purpose of this blog is to give general education and information about investing, wealth, careers, and college; It is not intended to be professional advice.
Author: Josh Ramos
Josh has paid off $130k in student loan debt in 4 years. By founding Home at 30, he wants to help end the student debt crisis by helping students and young professionals make decisions that will reward them for a lifetime.