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Permitting Staff to Work at Home Can Provide Many Benefits

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Telecommuting, workshifting or working from home - regardless of what small business owners want to call it - is becoming as popular as ever before and is a policy that many firm owners may have to consider. According to a recent survey conducted by Citrix, 65 percent of respondents said their employees enjoy the flexibility provided by working from home, while 61 said they are fans of not having to make the daily commute to work.

VP of integrated marketing and strategy at Citrix Mick Hollison noted that many technologies that can empower future workers to work from home are already available and reliable, and it’s easy to redesign workplaces to accommodate and optimize this model. Those who find the right mix of people management and office culture to enable this workforce will be those who come out ahead.

Establish a working-from-home policy

Small business owners who are allowing their employees to telecommute should first research how to manage staff that can be connected to the company from a number of different locations throughout the world. According to Business Insider, there are several inclusions small business owners should add to their policies on working from home.

  • Equipment use: If business owners provide their staff with employer-managed devices in which to work from anywhere, staff members must agree to a set of guidelines of acceptable use of those devices.
  • Securing company data: Small business owners need to make sure their data is protected with working virus protection software and cyberliability insurance, which keeps firms free of wrongdoing if devices become hacked. Firm owners must keep staff aware of these procedures.
  • Expenses to be reimbursed: If employees need access to the internet to complete all of their tasks while working from home, small business owners should have guidelines discussing whether or not the company will pay for their connection.

Working from home allows for cost savings

A few of the benefits small business owners are able to see when giving their staff the ability to work at home are potential cost savings on office space and having employees that are willing to work outside traditional office hours. The survey reported that over half of firms have experienced lower employee-related costs when using workshifting policies.

Hollison said that many businesses are already encouraging their employees to operate beyond the traditional workplace to increase responsiveness, boost productivity and lower the cost of maintaining offices and work devices, allowing the business to increase its overall bottom line.

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