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Teleworking : A practice to become with its limits

Teleworking : A practice to become with its limits

In recent years, we have been able to discern great changes in the world of employment, especially with remote work which tends to develop more and more.

A recent survey conducted by the firm ADP Canada, specialized in human resources, reveals that 45% of the interviewed workers prefer work remotely at least three days a week. This ratio increases at 61% in the people aged between 18 to 34 years old. The interest for the teleworking is even more marked in Québec where 59% of people indicated they prefer to work from home at least three days a week.

At first glance, we notice that teleworking introduces a wide range of advantages. Here are a few  :

A saving on the daily expenses
One of the main advantages of the teleworking is the cost reduction  for the employees (parking, fuel, coffees, etc.) In terms of earnings, there are also the savings that employers realize, mainly in rental costs and other fixed costs.

Working outside his residence city
Rare are the people ready to do more than 30 kilometers to go to work every day. With the remote work, the geographic barrier is partially eliminated.

Reduce the employees’ stress
Being in a controlled environment, where we do not feel observed could be an important advantage. Few people feel more comfortable when they are alone.

However, when we look on the topic, we can see that teleworking also has its drawbacks. So, what are the limits of remote working?

Employee isolation and a communication more complicated
The lack of interference with the colleagues is a major disadvantage of teleworking. Therefore, it is important to promote strong internal communication and regular correspondence with your teams.

In order to overcome this problem, Ms. Diane Gabrielle Tremblay, professor at the School of Administration at Téluq University, thinks it would be wise to set up teleworking in offices shared with other workers in order to break the loneliness of working at home. (article).

Suspicion of non-productivity
Absenteeism is often the biggest drag on employers since employees are without direct supervision, many bosses may feel their employees are not working at full productivity.
To remedy the situation, the company must put in place a system mainly based on the ability of the worker to meet the objectives.

We have previously distinguished the pros and cons of teleworking, but does this measure meets our needs? What if  a middle way was possible ? Here are some tips for establishing good practices.

Apply limits
Regarding an article published on Forbes, by M. Grant Freeland, teleworking requires the application of certain principles and limits from the organization. It is up to employers to set working limits, both outside and during regular working hours. Employees  must not feel stressed, under pression, or being obligated to work on unusual hours.

Establish specific objectives and regular monitoring
It is a priority that the managers and hierarchical superiors establish clear goals and expectations with all the team in teleworking. Inform regularly your immediate superior on the projects progress, difficulties experienced or overtime that you will need.

Recognize and be thankful for your employees work in telecommuting
It is essential that your employees working remotely feels appreciated and recognized for the efforts they put in the organization, this has a huge impact on their commitment and motivation.  When the employees receive a recognition for their work, they are more likely to stay satisfied and engaged in their current role.

In a such context, if the company wishes to establish the teleworking, it would be necessary to allow  employees to benefits from two worlds : working few days in teleworking and few days in attendance, as this could limit the negatives effects related to teleworking. 

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