Maintaining work-life balance is getting difficult with increasing stress, work pressure and hectic schedules. Nuclear families and single parents face more difficulties as they have to struggle hard to manage their responsibilities at home and at office. The concept of work from home came into existence to provide a good solution to these problems. When you opt for a freelancing job or if your company allows you to work from home on certain days or provides a decentralized work environment you surely get more time with your family. Along with individuals even the companies gain substantial benefit from this kind of provisions.
Reasons why individuals prefer work from home option:
- It gives you enough time at home.
- You can save on the travelling time and do something more productive in that time.
- For new mothers, it is very much needed when they require time with their newborns.
- Freelancing provides extra source of income which is much needed as our expenditure increases.
- Flexibility of working hours is beneficial for balancing personal and professional life.
A ‘good job’ can be both practically attractive while still not good enough to devote your entire life to. – Alain de Botton
Reasons why companies opt for work from home facility:
- Younger generation understands remote working technology and to attract young talent several initiatives are needed.
- While competing for skilled and experienced workforce, the more flexibility you offer more is your chance to get the best available talents.
- Majority of new mothers or single parents can be exceptionally talented but have to sacrifice on career due to personal liabilities. If the company intends to maintain these employees it has to provide either full time or part time work from home option to them.
- Companies can save lots of expenses related to infrastructure, power supply, and maintenance as the employees work from their homes.
Heather Schuck very rightly said – “You will never feel truly satisfied by work until you are satisfied by life”.
Companies have realized the importance of allowing their employees to work from home in order to provide conducive work environment. With arrival of several technologies company office need not be the only workplace and provides easy part-time or full-time work from home policy. Companies are not just strengthening their work policies but also proactively designing newer strategies to delight their internal customers. Foremost amongst them are IT big shots like – IBM which allows several categories of individuals to work from home, Dell which allows employees to work through remote connections, Yahoo which tracks the final outcome and not the number of hours at work. Few others in list are Google, Accenture, Cisco, Intel, Wipro and Infosys. Some of these companies are liberal about workplaces and allow you to indefinitely work from home, some of them expect you to seek manager’s permission and grant concession on case-to–case basis, while some others have decentralized employees who do not need to report to office but just be available on calls and online for discussions.
There are also few companies which have their entire workforce working remotely. Such companies not only have altruistic intent but also can cut down on the overhead expenses and use this money to provide better benefits to employees.
Apart from flexibility provided by companies, there is one more lucrative option that enables you to give much more time to your family and personal responsibilities, that is freelancing. A statistical survey conducted in 2006 revealed that around 30% of workforce is comprised of freelancers. As of 2014, 53 million people are doing freelance work in US which is around 34% of national workforce and the estimated earning of this force is $715 billion. By 2020 it is estimated to increase upto 40%. In UK around 1.4 million freelancers contribute to approximately £21 billion to economy. The number has risen drastically in past few years. Number of freelancers from various developing countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Philippines etc is also joining the race. These candidates are preferred due to cost benefit as well the excellent talent and skill pool that is present in developing countries. Topmost skills supplied by freelancing are article writing, content writing, translation, blogs, web content, creative writing, graphic designs, transcriptions, HTML etc. The positions can differ depending on the requirement and can accommodate from fresh graduates to senior management professionals. Elance, freelancing.com, odesk are few popular sites which help freelancers find suitable jobs and earn decent income.
Freelancing, work hour flexibility, part time home-based jobs and work from home options for corporate employees are no more fancy words but the need of the hour. The trend for these kinds of jobs is rising and more and more people are opting for it so as to make their job enjoyable and spent quality time with families and dear ones. These kinds of provisions not only help employees lead a satisfied life but also benefit organizations by cutting down on cost and helping them retain and attract better talents. And no doubt a happy employee can be much productive than a frustrated one.