The Impact of Telecommuting on Employees Job Performance

By
Writers@Aspire
Published
September 30, 2020

Telecommuting or remote working in Singapore is evidently desirable at present since it is far more flexible and cost-efficient. While telecommuting may or may not be a direct aspect that affects an employee's job performance. It is certainly an essential constituent of overall employee satisfaction.


Yes, job performance can be manifested in different dimensions. But we’re here to dissect the impact of telecommuting on job performance. In the end, we’ll let you know if it’s a good approach to foster telecommuting in your company. Perhaps, to help you understand how telecommuting can benefit an employer, employees as well as a corporate overall.


What Is Telecommuting?

In theory, telecommuting is a standard practice or an arrangement that allows employees to work outside of the designated office. To telecommunicate, an employee is required to utilize a set of technology to stay connected with the employer, colleagues, and fulfilling tasks on hand simultaneously.


In layman terms, it can also be interpreted as working from home, co-working space, or even in a coffee shop. Ultimately, how it works is the employee is bound to stay in-touch during work hours through video conferencing, email, mobile calling to get the job done. While some corporations in Singapore practice full-fledged telecommuting, others might differ. In the end, it all boils down to the agreement and the terms to practice telecommuting.


How Does Telecommuting Affect Employee Job Performance?

It is not a strange sight for companies in Singapore to practice telecommuting. With the unforeseen circumstances circulating the office settings and the progress of technology, companies are either forced or to telecommunicate voluntarily.


To fully comprehend the impact of telecommuting on employee job performance. First, we need to be cognizant of the needs of telecommuting. Unlike 20 years ago, job seekers are demanding more flexibility now than ever.


The advocates of telecommuting emphasize improving the work-life balance through flexibility as it is a critical aspect of fulfilling job satisfaction. By implementing telecommuting, employees can steer clear of the long commute time, transportation expenditures, and to be more focused on work that demands heavy cognitive thinking. All in all, when employees are satisfied, the positive impact is naturally reflected in job performance.


The upshot? The employee retention rate is upheld through this cost-effective organic strategy.


The Pros and Cons of Telecommuting

  • Promotes job flexibility
  • Cost-efficient for employer and employees
  • More committed to their job
  • Higher employees retention rate

The Cons of Telecommuting

  • Difficult to foster a relationship with coworkers
  • May encounter possible distractions
  • Increased risk of network and security data infiltration


Pros Analysis:

1. Promote Job Flexibility

https://unsplash.com/photos/nF0nQuqBsrI

Img alt-text: Remote workers working in a co-working space. CC: YouXVentures on Unsplash.

Working from a nine-to-five schedule is a norm in Singapore. But when a job schedule is flexible, that is when things get interesting. How it happens is when an employer gives its employees the freedom to work remotely and regardless of the working time.


Through telecommuting, employees can balance their work-life without neglecting their obligations. And that is especially beneficial for those who are obligated to take care of the elderly at home or picking up children to and from school. Remote working allows an employee to manage their time more flexibly without neglecting either of the parties during the process.


2. Cost-efficiency for Employers and Employees

Time is indeed money. Telecommuting allows an employer to economize on office overhead costs. While an employee can cut back the commuting cost and time. As compared to the employee working in a designated office setting, employers need to bear costs from real-estate, building maintenance, office supplies, security, and more. Even when employers offer to subsidize employees’ utility costs related to telecommuting, it is still by far more lucrative.


3. More Committed to The Job

Happy employee working remotely with his laptop. CC: Unsplash


The last thing you want is your employees to feel demotivated. Of course, there are plenty of other ways to keep employees keen and committed to the job. But, telecommuting is one of the best ways to bridge the gap.


In fact, a recent study from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reported that teleworkers are more productive and thrive by working at their own pace. That applies to the reduction of leave-taking for teleworkers as compared to employees who work in an office. If you find yourself puzzling how it works, it is simple.


Motivation often time comes from within, regardless it is triggered by rewards or endeavors. That means when an employee’s fulfillment is satisfied, the vitality to commit to a job is sustained.


4. Better Employees Retention Rate

Beyond job promotion and rewards, telecommuting is here to promote employee retention. Not only is it organic and cost-effective, but telecommuting is also less stressful.


Should an employee stumbled upon personal complications at home, she can resolve the problem deliberately with these given alternatives. For example, telecommuting can reduce the chances of employee resignation due to moving further away from the office. Thus, telecommuting is one of the best employee retention tactics today.


Cons Analysis:

1. Lack of Social Engagement

Social gathering for dinner after work. CC: Prisilla Du Preez on Unsplash.

Creativities are nurtured through a series of engagements. It is most certainly possible to search for answers online, video chatting with coworkers to resolve problems critically. But nothing compares to the engagement fostered through real-life experiences and ideas exchange.


Socializing among colleagues not only boosts employee mental health, but it is also vital to build a positive trust and supportive working environment. With telecommuting, these collaborative opportunities are seized and networking events are almost non-existent.


2. Harder to Focus Due to The Surrounding Distractions

When you are working from home, there is a high chance you are encapsulated in the most comfortable settings. As good as telecommuting sounds, it does come with a price.

Distraction can come in different forms — sounds, sights, smells, and more. What if you are having a video conference with your superior while your neighbor is having a house renovation. It does not look professional, isn’t it?


Another common scenario is when you are a parent with kids, it is undeniably hard to make a transition from being a parent and a professional simultaneously when both parties are your priorities.


3. Risk of Network and Security Data Infiltration


Security infiltration is what most organizations fear the most. Of course, it is possible to secure company data with the most extensive security. But the possibility of data infiltration is compromised with employees remote accessing documents internationally. Without proper implementation of a standard protocol and the use of company-issued equipment, there will always be a risk for the company assets.


Should Companies Continue The Practice of Telecommuting?

The impact of telecommuting on job performance is varied. While the effect may be direct or indirect, the practice of telecommuting is rather intriguing as it provides more benefits than harm.


Depending on the situation and the nature of the job, we do encourage companies to weigh in different factors to practice telecommuting. If a job can be carried out remotely, telecommuting is highly recommended.


However, the final decision boils down to the characteristics of the job and many other aspects including the budget, employment constraints, laws, and regulations.


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