Remote Work: What is it and how does it work?


Apartment instead of office Nick Keppol via flickr, CC BY 2.0
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Some people do it, many want it, almost everyone has heard of it: working independently of location. Whether at the desk at home, on the train during a business trip or on the beach on a deserted island: some activities can be carried out comfortably in these places as well - theoretically, because without fast Internet access it usually does not work. What you need to know about Remote Work.

Remote work shapes our working world. The Cambridge Dictionary defines the term as the work of an employee, primarily from home, communicating with the company via email and telephone. To delimit from this definition are self-employed who work exclusively remotely, so for example so-called Digital Nomads. Although other places of work are also conceivable, most employees choose to work at home wherever they are. That's why the terms home office and home work have become synonymous with remote work. Also from mobile office, teleworking or remote work is in the German-speaking area sometimes the speech.

More satisfaction - less productivity?

Whether on a daily basis or over a longer period of time: More and more employers allow home office. And they have a good reason for this: more flexibility at work, and this includes the free choice of place of work, usually increases employee satisfaction significantly. After all, private and working life can be reconciled a lot better if, firstly, you have more free time (thanks to the saved commute) and, secondly, you can do small but important tasks during the day and not late at night (for example, washing your clothes).

Interrupting work and settling private affairs - while employees value this freedom, some employers fear losing control. As long as it's not about more than making a quick phone call or accepting a package, they generally understand and trust their employees to rework the time they spend. However, it is often difficult for the employer to judge whether "black sheep" take advantage of the freedoms granted to him.

However, Stanford University researchers have shown that Home Office productivity is even higher than in the office - 13 percent, according to the study. How is this possible? First of all, the basic prerequisites for a smooth workflow must be given - above all, fast internet access. In addition, there are now numerous specialized tools that make it easy to communicate with colleagues and supervisors as if you were sitting together at the conference table, or using your remote desktop to access your computer at work when needed. display

However, what matters for the higher productivity in the home office is something else: according to the study, employees at home take fewer breaks and are less likely to get sick, which is one of the tips of the home office, as this is the revision T r and gate opens. The International Labor Organization (ILO) has also observed that home office employees approach their work more innovatively - the PDF can be read here.

Remote Work is here to stay

Mobile work should become the new standard. This is also suggested by a recent study by IDG Research Services (as PDF): Many claims that employees place on their "workstation of the future" are directly or indirectly attributable to location-independent work do. So, according to more flexible working time models, the second place on the wish list is a fast network connection, which 45.9 percent of respondents would like. At 43.6 percent, third place is followed by location-independent access to files. And 37.2 percent want a lower duty of duty in the office and more home office. Politicians now want to respond to the demands of trade unions: in Germany, a law should soon establish the right to work at home.