How Remote Working is Removing Barriers
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Remote working has become the norm for the majority of us since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic earlier this year. Whilst you're probably eager to return to ‘normal life’, there are also a number of silver linings to the transition from office/university to home.
Experts in all things Diversity & Inclusion, Chris Allan and Anderson Hewitt from Your D+I, list the number of ways that remote working has actually helped to remove barriers and lead to a happier working life...
There are many things to hold Covid-19 accountable for, but one tiny saving grace is the normalisation of remote work.
Before the outbreak and the subsequent lockdowns, the world was already seeing a steady increase in working from home. However, due to lockdown, more of us than ever are now working from home, whether that be in a cushty home office or a shared uni house!
And whilst many will return to normality after the pandemic, for some of us, our sense of ‘normal’ is changing. In fact, the number of remote workers is predicted to double after Covid-19 compared to before the pandemic hit.
Whether you're at university or on placement, the benefits of working from home (and not looking back after lockdown) are seemingly endless.
The benefits to remote working
For one, the commute is undeniably easier, whether it be your train journey into the office or that 10 minute walk to campus. That – along with the homemade lunches – also means you save money working remotely.
And that’s just the beginning.
Remote work often comes with added flexibility, meaning you can fit your work and studies around your life - rather than the other way around. Not to mention the extra time with your pets (that is if you can resist the literal puppy dogs eyes all day).
And employers benefit too! They also save money when their employees work from home. Running (and owning) office space, as well as the purchasing of equipment and reimbursing of travel that comes along with this, is a huge expense saved when working remotely.
In many cases, remote work also improves the productivity and happiness of staff and, therefore, the company as a whole. Additionally, businesses can look forward to significantly reducing their carbon footprint.
However, the biggest advantage of remote work for both employees and employers has to be the barriers it removes.
The most obvious of these is location. Companies can now hire within a much wider radius of their own location, so if you’re working or studying from home - it doesn’t really matter where you live. Being able to work with people from all over also means working with people from different cultural backgrounds. This is great news if you're wanting to gain more diverse thought and break down cultural barriers.
Remote work also allows for more social mobility. If you can't afford to commute, or move to an expensive area like London, there are now more job opportunities than ever that don't require travel.
The lack of commute also opens roles up to more neuro-diverse talent. Those with autism, for example, might be put off certain jobs with a commute that puts them in stressful situations like crowded trains.
Working from home removes the stressful environments that come with travelling and even those at work too. While companies can provide reasonable adjustments for their disabled staff, there are limits to how much they can alter an office space. When working from home, however, neuro-diverse individuals are already in a space that works for them.
Remote work can also break barriers for those with other disabilities. Flexible schedules can be especially important for disabled individuals as well as carers. Being able to schedule work around medical appointments, for example, means that some who were previously unable to work now can. Some people with mobility impairments, who are unable to commute, may now have the option to work due to the increased opportunities in remote work too.
The barriers broken when work is remote are innumerable. And many of them even help diverse talent and businesses wanting to improve their Diversity + Inclusion.
In addition, recent graduates can now expect more options than ever in terms of the companies they can work for. While Covid-19 has shook up our lives in many unpleasant ways, it has undeniably brought us closer to a future of happier work lives.
About Your D+I
Your D+I is on a life long quest to create equal opportunities for everyone. We support businesses to make real Diversity + Inclusion happen through audits and consultancy support as well as fun and personable training workshops; delivered online or in person.