Why Remote Work Makes Sense for Small Businesses
In the new business world, ruled by uncertainty, adaptability is the name of the game. Remote work or hybrid work is no longer a quick fix. Change fast to stay ahead.
Remote work for small businesses is here to stay. According to BDC, 74% of small business owners say they will continue working remotely. Companies uncovered the benefits of remote work during the pandemic and are keen to adopt it in their ongoing business strategy. Sensible technological investments, access to collaboration & productivity tools, and proper workplace and security policies can bring the best out of remote working.
Benefits of Remote Work for a Small Business
Remote work is no longer a reluctant option. Businesses have witnessed a spike in employee productivity, and many recent studies back this. Here are some significant trends:
- Business Continuity is unthreatened as remote working offers protection against ad-hoc lockdowns and changing restrictions.
- With flexible work hours, employees can work in their most productive time against the regular 9 to 5 model. The flexibility reduces employee absences and increases engagement. Commute time is channelized better. Little management can help strike the right work-life balance, improving employee satisfaction scores.
- Working from home is no longer perceived as an indulgence—most recent attrition stats factor lack of work flexibility as one of the top reasons for quitting. And on the other hand, when this flexibility is offered, employees are motivated to work happily.
Decreased Operating Costs
For long, small businesses have shied away from remote working and have viewed it as a luxury. However, things are not the same anymore,
- The recent advances in cloud solutions, connectivity, and workplace collaboration tools have brought down technology costs and made remote working a viable option for small businesses.
- What is spent on technology is possibly less than what is saved on on-site real estate, utility, and recurring business travel costs.
- Happier employees mean higher employee retention leading to fewer recruitment costs. Hiring international employees is made cheaper as fewer relocations.
- Money saved is money earned. Now remote working is not only more productive but also more profitable.
Technology has advanced quickly to help businesses adapt to the new work dynamics. From networking, collaboration to cybersecurity, companies of all sizes have a wide variety of tools to make sure they can run their business smoothly from anywhere. With the hybrid/remote trends, tech vendors offer more and more features/applications and education for companies, especially SMBs.
If smaller companies don’t have a powerful in-house IT team, they also can count on Managed Service Providers (MSPs) as their IT advisors and experts.
Role of MSPs in Enabling Remote Work for Small Businesses
- MSPs offer remote working solutions for small businesses that are customizable according to team size.
- They come with technical expertise and industry experience that helps them understand the business needs. They recommend and implement best-of-breed solutions that are aligned well to the business.
- Their services may include end-device management, infrastructure support, connectivity, communications, and networking solutions.
- They also offer cyber security services that include features such as firewalls, password protection, VPN, malware, /phishing threat awareness, etc. They build cyber security regulations and compliance manuals and help educate the employees on the same.
- The abundance of fully-loaded, cloud-hosted workplace collaboration and productivity tools helps ensure the smooth functioning of team projects and maximizes employee performance. MSPs can help find the best-suited solution from several products available in the market.
Small businesses make up around 97% of employer businesses in Canada. In short, the future of the country’s economy depends very much on how small businesses can rise above the challenges of today and take control of the current business reality. Switching to remote working can be a catalyst to stay afloat and soar high.
Related podcast: ITEK’s CIO/COO, Christian Doroja, joins an episode on the Canadian Dentist Podcast and discusses cybersecurity and the remote work trend in the Dental industry.