The demand for flexibility in where and how employees work has been growing for decades. However, employers and employees perceived that as an occasional work pattern, such as freelancing, until the Covid-19 pandemic. In March 2020, remote working gained remarkable speed due to the pandemic and physical restrictions that followed.
Obviously, working from home is not an occasional work pattern anymore. This working arrangement is essential for business continuity and employee retention. Statistics show that 88% of organizations worldwide encouraged or made it mandatory for their employees to work from home after the pandemic.
It is an already known fact that remote working has many employee-oriented benefits. Flexible working options form work-life balance by positively affecting the lives of remote employees. Though, one of the most significant benefits of remote work is its positive environmental impact.
The benefits of working remotely involve increased productivity as long as discipline and remote employee engagement can be achieved. Fortunately, many remote work tools create a virtual office for this achievement while functioning as remote employee monitoring software.
Thus, remote working provides cost savings to employers as well as removes the drudgery of employees, such as:
Employees who constructively establish the work-life balance can act more freely to achieve more successful outputs. In addition, there is one more thing that this whole system provides, positive impact on the environment!
Saving time, energy, and money spent to arrive at an office is one of the most significant advantages of remote working. Merely just working from home, remote employees reduce their carbon footprint! You can make a difference if you work in a hybrid system, even by using public transportation rather than an individual vehicle.
Now think about the effect it would have if we were to reduce most cars on the roads. The Global Workplace Analytics report states that remote workers’ emissions are reduced by taking 600,000 cars off the road for a year. The same report shows that working from home half the week can reduce emissions by 54 million tons every year.
Fossil fuel is used in heat, electricity, and transformation. As you can see, we owe our survival to fossil fuels! However, burning fossil fuels produces carbon dioxide. In other words, it boosts harmful gasses, triggering the irreversible consequences of the climate crisis.
Even after all the environmental movements pre-pandemic, a significant amount of people traveling to work were using petrol or diesel vehicles. Due to remote working, fossil fuel consumption is a massive decrease with the absence of individuals driving to work and then returning from work. To summarize, getting rid of traffic jams, commuting to the office every single day and often long distances affects not only employee stress, but also our future!
Big industrial workers taking their work home temporarily reduced air pollution levels around the world. Due to digitalization, there is a reduction in paper use. This paperless office strategy saves trees. Even one remote worker can remove up to 14.7 pounds of carbon dioxide from the air this way!
By cutting greenhouse gas emissions, we get to increase air quality. Even though this has been a temporary effect, the amount of air pollution reduced has never been this dramatic. Many individuals directly noticed this change. In the end, it is a daily life fact, not just found in statistics that we don’t understand.
During one workday inside the office, employees use a vast amount of physical office resources. Consider all the must have office supplies, from paper to coffee, from furniture to cleaning supplies. Remote working first digitalizes the exchange of documents between coworkers or external partners, which means a mass reduction of paper use with paperless office software.
Think about the amount of paper, time, and space that is saved due to digital documentation. No more print copy, label, and archive in big locked rooms! Also, plastic use has decreased since employees no longer feel the need to use plastic cups with home office.
Believe it or not, the energy consumption in offices is nearly twice as high. Office spaces tend to use more energy since the workplace environment has many diverse requirements. An office has to have:
All of these requirements are twice as low when employees work from home.
When we look beyond these kinds of necessities, we see that especially the behavior of an office worker affects consumption. As a common example, an employee might not want to turn off the light as frequently as they would in their home. On the other hand, the studies show that every employee, who works from home, reduces energy consumption by at least 5,400 kWh every year!
Lastly, individuals tend to have extra time and flexibility due to the time spent inside the house. Through remote working options, individuals get to spend more time improving themselves. As we have witnessed, individuals who spend time in their homes started gardening to expand their houses’ limitations. Moreover, they started healthier diets and gained environment-friendly habits, such as jogging outside rather than going to public gyms. Even our hobbies are turning into something mutually beneficial!
Studies show that by 2028, 73% of all departments will have remote workers. Big corporate companies have decided to choose remote working as much as possible, even in post-pandemic times, by solving how to increase employee engagement remotely.
As of March 2020, employers and employees have had a lot of experience in solving remote working problems. Many businesses, large and small, have created an effective ecosystem by offering each other guides like an employee handbook for remote employees.
In summary, it is safe to say that remote work from home is good for the environment while having significant employee benefits. All that is needed is how to set employee expectations for remote work correctly.
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