Many of us experienced telecommuting for the first time during the pandemic—and many of us liked it a lot. A telecommuting job—or telework or remote work—has both advantages and disadvantages.
Among the disadvantages:
- Telecommuting does not necessarily give you more flexibility. An employer may expect you to be available at your computer during specific hours.
- Zoom fatigue is a real problem. By now, you know your limits for online communications with co-workers, clients, vendors, and others. But when your primary interaction with others is through phone, email, or video conferencing, you cannot simply opt-out.
- The physical separation from co-workers may lead to your feeling and being “out of the loop.” You may find that co-workers who commute resent your freedom; your boss is not aware of everything you contribute, or people forget to update you about onsite conversations or decisions. Even if none of that happens, you may feel the strain of isolation.
- The proximity to home and family may make it harder for you to concentrate when you know there are chores to be done or someone wants your attention. The potential for interruptions increases when you lack a dedicated home office.
The advantages of a telecommuting job include:
- Lower commuting costs and less time spent commuting: According to Hubstaff, which produces software to assist in managing remote work, the average US commute is 26 minutes each way, totaling 200 hours per year of sitting in cars, trains, or buses.
- Closer proximity to home and family: As stated under disadvantages, this proximity can also be a drawback, depending on how much control you have over distractions. Given the state of childcare in the US, proximity to home and family may allow more people to enter the workforce.
- Depending on your work style, more productivity: One US study showed a 35% increase in productivity with telecommuting; 85% of businesses have confirmed that remote workers are more productive.
- Fewer illnesses: At least part of the increase in productivity results from fewer illnesses transferred from worker to worker and customer to worker. Companies will evaluate this post-pandemic.
- Geographic flexibility: If you telecommute, you can work almost anywhere. Your employer may expect you to show up at the office periodically, so there are some geographic considerations but much fewer than when you have a daily commute.
Only you can decide if a telecommuting job is the right choice for you, whether you work outside of the office one day a week or five. Whatever your decision, Robin’s Resumes® is ready to help you land the job you deserve and want.