The 4 Pros and Cons of Virtual Workforce
We are now living in a digital world; wherever you go and wherever you are, technology is around us. In terms of business, we live in the age of virtual workforce
Right now there are employees sitting at home collaborating with their team via Skype or other team collaboration tools. The employer/s? They have managed to grow their business with virtual employees and that’s one thing to acknowledge.
Having a physical office seems like a good idea for a team running 20+ people. However, for a starting business and small business, it may not be the best option for now. This is where virtual team that works remotely comes in handy and is more ideal.
Working with other people that are hundreds or thousands of miles away may sound ludicrous at first but it works.
Lower overhead costs. Virtual companies save big time on office lease, utility expenses, electricity, internet, office furnitures and other associated costs in office spaces.
Not only does all this savings can be used for clients but also greatly affects your profit margin. In addition, this savings allows you to invest more on your people and the company in its whole.
Saves time and other expenses. How long does it take you to prepare for work and how long was the travel time to get you there? The two to three-hour travel time plus preparation is a lot of time wasted. Now, because of the convenience brought by working from home, these hours are now spent working.
Transportation costs saved for employees and overhead costs for employers. It’s a win-win situation for both workers and owners.
Increases productivity. Ever heard of the old saying that goes “Sitting is the new smoking”? Several of studies have shown that sitting at your desk for more than 11 hours daily claims great repercussions on your health and worst, it increases the risk of death.
Since virtual employees are not tied to their desks for more than 8 hours daily, they are able to move freely and be more active. Furthermore, since more time is saved from commuting, workers have more time to rest and more time to work on their tasks/projects.
Less vacation/sick leaves. Since these remote employees are given flexible working hours, you are provided more time to eat your breakfast with your family, grab a quick bite for lunch or even work at around lunchtime.
Some sick leaves are caused by colds and severe coughs which can be contagious when around with other people so tendency is, you’re forced to file a sick leave even if you are still able to get going. Now that you work remotely, sick leaves are almost avoidable.
Miss out on opportunities. When you have a physical office, you get to have remarkable professionals over, some comes in unannounced. These are the opportunities you greatly miss when you don’t have a physical office. These could be people referred to the company by clients or people who are there to inquire.
In addition, some offices invite speakers over to discuss on relative subjects. Others sign up for seminars for them to go to. Either way, these are opportunities little to completely not offered to remote workers.
Miscommunication. This is probably the primary conundrum virtual teams encounter day after day — miscommunication, misinterpretation and a whole lot of misunderstandings.
Body language, hand gestures and all your nonverbals is equally as important as your words. Communicating virtually limits your ability to disseminate information more coherently. You may appear sarcastic even if you’re not, you may not be able to articulately deliver your message and you may perceive their message differently because of processing it in a different tone.
These can be avoided if only you’re able to observe body language as interpersonal issues may arise should it be not resolved immediately and appropriately.
Difficult to create professional relationship. One of among the important aspect of working that lacks in virtual workforces is building camaraderie. Social interactions keep us mentally sane and healthy.
Moreover, social interaction is vital in encouraging better, more effective teamwork. With this out of the equation, employees are not given the opportunity to interact personally with one another and build a collaborative foundation. This has a great impact on their collaborations and brainstorming activities.
Less cohesiveness. Since you have a remote company, you can either assign working hours to your people or let them choose for their own flexible work hours.
If they choose their own work hours, this is where everything gets disorganized and fragmented. This is where the company can go wrong. Let’s say, you need to call an emergency meeting to solve a major unexpected crisis, not everyone can answer to your call and make an immediate action on such crisis.
Any thoughts you’d like to add on this subject? Don’t forget to leave a comment below!
About Chie Suarez
Chie Suarez is a writer for Ideal Office Furniture, a company specialising in a wide selection of office furniture designs servicing large corporate businesses to small home offices throughout Sydney.