Why Employers Should Trust The Workshifter

According to the Telework Research Network, productivity increases by 27% among those who engage in workshifting, or working from somewhere that is inherently a far more logical place than the traditional space. This statistic should be of considerable interest to employers everywhere as productivity, or the lack thereof, is one of the biggest challenges facing them in the modern era.

Whenever you are responsible for a workforce you face many and varied obstacles if you are to motivate them sufficiently in order to meet established goals. New employees may be enthusiastic and dedicated but invariably it doesn’t take long before a certain amount of lethargy sets in and those productivity percentages start to fall off. If the employees share a common workspace what’s the problem? Is this some kind of condition that permeates from one employee workstation to another?

Many books have been written over the years about how to motivate employees and how to manage effectively, but maybe those books have been missing their most significant chapters. It’s possible that the answer to the lack of productivity in the traditional office workspace is to actually get rid of the workspace altogether. This is where workshifting can, slowly but surely, come to the rescue of floundering organisations.

The same research network that suggested that employees would be considerably more productive by engaging in workshifting also suggests that their employers can save up to $20,000 per employee, per year by going along with this notion. It doesn’t take long to figure out how they might come up with those calculations. There are many savings to be realised by cutting down on the direct and overhead costs associated with each and every workstation. Furthermore, if the employees themselves are happier and are by definition more productive in their new environments turnover will be reduced, thus leading to reductions in hiring and training expenditures.

Companies that embrace and support work shifting and teleworking have shown that employee attrition can be reduced by as much as 25% and the new, more educated and informed employee tends to look for organisations that offer this kind of flexibility in the first place.

When you look at all these figures collectively as an employer you must feel as if the writing is on the wall. It’s time to change the culture of oversight and to trust the employees to be as, or more productive than they were before. Whether we like it or not productivity is always going to suffer if the employee is not as inspired or motivated as they could be. When an employer actually gives the employee the perceived “freedom” to be a workshifter, this essentially implies an element of trust that may have been missing before. This can, in turn, exponentially improve the relationship between both parties and each side stands to gain, as a consequence.

Finally, just imagine how benefits would spread elsewhere. We would undoubtedly see a reduction in traffic jams during typical commute periods and save valuable resources, to boot.

Tell me your experiences of workshifting?  Is it something you would consider?  I love to read your comments …