If you ask 10 people what their ideal work set-up is, nine of them will probably say:"I wanna work from home!" That's because nothing beats a morning commute that consists of walking from your bed to your makeshift office set up at the kitchen table.
I know this first hand, because for the past six months, this has been my reality.
On days that I work from home I always seem to have an extra pep in my step. Perhaps it's because I can take my time getting dressed since I don't have to worry about missing my train.
Or maybe it's because I don't have to spend 50 minutes crammed in the under ventilated and overcrowded New York City subway.
Whatever the reason is, on days I don't have to commute into the office, I'm always just a little less crabby than the days I do (which is a good thing for everyone).
According to a 2016 study done by Global Workplace Analytics, working from home (aka telecommuting or working remotely), is the goal for about 90% of U.S. employees - even if it's just a couple times a week.
Working from home has some major perks - like more control over your schedule, more time to spend with family, friends and self, and less money wasted on commuting (which is something I'm especially sensitive to since I spend about $300 per month on public transportation).
With all these benefits, it shouldn't be a surprise that so many people want out of the office.
The good news? It's never been easier to make the switch from an "in the office" to an "at home" employee.
Here are four reasons now is the perfect time for you to consider making the switch to telecommuter.
Four reasons now's the perfect time to start working from home
1. Companies Know They Need to Remain Competitive
Rewind five to six years ago and working from home (and any other flexible work arrangement) was considered an "above and beyond" perk and employers could get away with not offering it to their employees. This was at the time the U.S. economy was still reeling from the Great Recession and you were probably so happy to have a job, you weren't in a position to negotiate extras for yourself like being able to work one, two or all five days a week from home.
Fast forward back to today and things are completely different. The economy is getting back on its feet and millennials have taken over the workforce. The vibes have shifted and people aren't afraid to stand up for themselves and demand work arrangements that integrate seamlessly into their lives. Companies know this and have realized that in order to attract and retain high achieving and ambitious people, they'll need to offer appealing benefits - like the flexibility to work from home.
2. Technology Can Easily Support Teams With Remote Workers
I currently work on a team with six people - four in NYC, one person in Colorado and two people in the UK. Even though our team is spread across different geographies and time zones, we're still able to communicate with each other using a WiFi connection, laptop and cloud based apps.
As long as employers are ready to commit to supporting employees who want to work from home, there are hundreds (if not thousands) of collaboration and communication tools specifically designed for seamless coordination of team deliverables - no matter where individuals are located. The idea that "it's just not possible" is so 2007.
3. Research Supports the Benefits to Employers of Remote Workers
As more companies embrace the idea of having flexible work arrangements, researchers have been coming out of the woodwork and identifying the many benefits of allowing employees to work from home.
When you work from home you'll find you feel more independent and satisfied with your job. And while that's good for you, working from home is also great for your company! When you work from home, you're more productive and less likely to resign. Remember that the next time you raise the topic with your boss.
4. The Idea of Working from Home is No Longer Taboo
Believe it or not, there was a time when working from home was a no-no. The assumption was that anyone looking to work from home did so, in order to slack off from work or find another job altogether. There's so many real life examples that show this is simply not true.
As more companies have begun to implement their own work from home policies and witnessed firsthand how much morale on their teams have grown, this line of thinking has dropped significantly. Think about it - if you had the freedom to work from whenever without someone breathing down your back to get things done, wouldn't that increase your contributions dramatically? Exactly.
I created the 2017 Beginner's Work from Home Guide for people who are serious about transitioning to a work from home position this year. In this guide, I'll outline the process for you to clarify why you want to work from home, identify your work from home goals and map out your immediate next steps.
Ready to take the leap? Click the image below to get started!