- Flexible and remote work options are becoming a norm in global workplaces, according to research by U.K.-based workplace software company Condeco. The firm's survey of 750 managers and C-suite executives and other leaders found flexible work options continue to grow, with 43% of U.S. employers currently offering remote work arrangements and 49% now allowing workers to set their own hours.
- On a global scale, the research showed 41% of leaders said their company already offer some form of remote working, and 60% permit employees to set their workday's start and end times. By count of countries in the survey, Condeco said Australia leads in remote-work options (45% of the country's respondents), followed by the U.S. Germany was least likely to provide remote work options at 35%. However, American businesses were least likely to offer flextime (49%), according to the survey.
- According to the research, 60% of all respondents expressed concern over the speed at which technology is shaping their businesses. The responses indicated increased concern about the "internet of things," cloud computing and big data, Condeco said.
Forty-three percent of U.S. businesses represented in Condeco's study plan to offer more remote work options in the upcoming year, compared to only 9% that plan to reduce their remote work arrangements. These statistics show how much traction remote work is gaining. In OWL Labs' 2018 Global State of Remote Work report, more than half of the participants offered remote work options or some type of hybrid form of remote work.
If employers are beginning to catch on to remote work as a growing trend, workers are likely to welcome the change. Eighty percent of employees in a recent IWG survey said they would choose a job with a flexible work option over one without it, and in a 2018 Randstad Workmonitor survey, 82% of of those polled said they liked the idea of working anywhere they choose — even though most workers in the survey ages 18 to 24 said they preferred to work in the office.
Remote work isn't without its concerns, however. Employees who access their company's computer system in their daily work present a cybersecurity risk, and remote workers pose a greater risk than onsite workers, according to a recent OpenVPN survey. To lower the risk of a cyber breach, HR and IT can work together to craft cybersecurity policies and training programs.
With remote work burgeoning, workplaces with remote work policies may need to better communicate the requirements, tools and expectations for participating in remote work programs. HR can take the lead on drafting the policies and working with managers on making remote work arrangements.