When the COVID-19 pandemic struck, many employers understandably were concerned about how this would affect their businesses. Of course, many businesses were forced to close temporarily and in some cases permanently due to the social distancing restrictions put in place across the nation. However, those that were able to stay open did so in part because they were able to shift their employees into the remote workforce.

It’s possible that remote work was initially disruptive for many employees. However, it doesn’t have to remain so. Furthermore, remote work doesn’t have to relegated solely to the pandemic. Many employers are considering maintaining a remote workforce after it’s possible to return to a standard office space. Technological advances, as well as the availability of remote workforce support from technology consulting services, make this more attainable than ever before. But what are the benefits of having employees work from home for the long term? Let’s explore them below.

1. It’s Cheaper

Business owners are always attempting to save money, and due to the economic strains caused by the pandemic, that’s more important now than ever before. Having employees work from home allows employers to reduce costs in a major way. For one thing, they no longer have to pay the overhead costs associated with maintaining an office space. This will include not only rent, but utilities, cleaning services, and other costs associated with upkeep.

Employers who have invested in permanent office spaces may also liquidate those investments and use the money elsewhere. They will no longer need to compensate employees for the gas they spend on commuting, as some employers do. If business owners do need to save money in a major way, it’s also easier for the remote workforce to operate in smaller, more streamlined teams. While they will need to add in a remote workforce support team for IT services, this can be accomplished through working with a third party company and is often quite affordable. In total, it’s estimated that employers saved $44 billion in 2017 alone. Employers seeking to cut costs should move their employees to the remote workforce.

2. Increased Productivity

It’s a common misconception that employees actually work less or struggle to work when they are doing so at home. In fact, many employers find that their employees become more productive when working remotely. This may be due to a number of different factors. A lot of office environments have complex social dynamics that can be distracting and even detrimental to employees. It’s hard to focus on work when you are caught up in office gossip, and working remotely eliminates that issue.

Additionally, it’s easy for employees to resolve issues when working remotely. If they have questions for their bosses, they can schedule teleconference appointments with them. If they’re struggling with a technology-related issue, remote workforce support can easily be contacted, and most problems can be resolved remotely. The process of working at home is simply much easier and more streamlined.

3. Less Absenteeism

It’s simply easier for employees to get to work when working from home — understandably! While some employees may stay home when they’re sick simply because they don’t want to expose their coworkers, many are still capable of working. When working remotely, they can take sick days if they like, or they can power through a cold and work while recovering. Remote workforce support is just as available to those employees as they are to anyone else!

Furthermore, employees no longer need to worry about getting stuck in traffic while commuting. These elements make it much easier for employees to get to work on time and work as needed.

4. Safety

COVID-19 is not the only virus that we need to be concerned about. There are many different contagious illnesses that can affect employees, and having employees work remotely keeps employees safe and reduces concerns about employer liability.

The pandemic is a reality that many are still getting used to, but it will still be some time before we can return to the office. In many ways, you may not want to return to the office. With these benefits in mind, employers can move forward with a remote workforce for the long term.