SMB Working Remotely

Longer hours mean lower job satisfaction – or so you might think. However, GFI’s recent small business survey indicates otherwise. According to respondents, those who have worked remotely report longer work weeks, with 26 percent working 50 hours or more compared to only 10 percent of those who haven’t worked remotely. Despite that, 75 percent of remote workers say the ability to get their jobs done without coming in to the office has improved their lives.

It makes sense; when it comes to how we spend our time, quality matters more than quantity. And those who work from home – whether part or all of the time – reported that it makes it easier to achieve that much sought after but oh-so-elusive work/life balance.

But doesn’t being “out of the loop” mean missing out on promotions or having to settle for lower pay? Surprisingly, remote workers reported more satisfaction with their advancement opportunities and income than those who haven’t worked remotely.  The survey also challenges the idea that most home workers are women in low-level clerical positions staying home with children: respondents who worked remotely were more likely to be well-educated men with high incomes.

Regardless of gender or position, it’s the rise of mobile devices that makes remote work possible – but although there’s a perception that tablets are taking over the world, more of the remote workers surveyed most often use laptops (52 percent) or smart phones (51 percent) than iPads and their counterparts (35 percent). Regardless of what they use to connect, a majority said they – not their employers – own the devices.

Remote work isn’t for everyone, though, as 25 percent see mobile computing as a development that makes it more difficult to escape work, while causing additional stress. And significant numbers report that, although they rarely work remotely, they do so on holidays (43 percent) and while on vacation (38 percent).