Remote working has come full circle in recent years. Skilled people sold their goods in shops attached to their homes during the pre-industrial days. When the Industrial Revolution occurred, people started working in factories and offices and later in cubicles. Technological advancements, especially the internet, paved the way for remote working to come back to the forefront.
Remote working may appear attractive to everyone as only the advantages like flexible working hours and ease of managing home while at work surface in conversations about remote working. However, many do not know that remote working also has its drawbacks like other forms of employment.
Difficulty in Networking
Remote working does not allow employees to stay updated with the happenings in the industry. In addition, involvement in the lives and activities of peers is also tricky in remote working due to the physical isolation of the workers.
A remote worker must stay in touch with like-minded people. Talking to people from the same profession, going to mixer events, and joining local coworker spaces that organize networking events, seminars and courses are opportunities for the otherwise physically isolated remote workers to meet other people.
Isolation and Loneliness
It is a fact that remote working happens in isolation. As much as a person may prefer to work alone and increase their productivity, being lonely all the time can be counterproductive. Remote workers who feel lonely and badly need company should consider working from coffee shops. Local coffee shops often become remote worker’s unofficial workplace.
Suppose a company has a lot of remote workers. In that case, it should organize events where some or all of the remote workers can participate and mingle with each other.
Even though remote working may seem attractive, a worker must have high levels of self-control and discipline to be productive. In addition, remote workers have to work independently, as they do not have managers like their on-campus peers to guide them.
Difficulty in Taking time off
Working in the office provides a clear demarcation between the office and home time, as the office time ends when the work ends for the day. However, given that the home is also an office for a remote worker, it is difficult to distinguish between the home and office time.
Taking some time off is crucial for remote workers. This means no emails or computers; only reading books, playing games, watching movies, and engaging in other relaxing activities during the off-time.
Considerations for Managers with Remote Workers
Companies must hire remote workers who demonstrate a strong work ethic. It is also crucial that companies regularly check on their remote workers through remote employee monitoring software and ensure that they are productive, resourceful, and self-controlled.