The tech industry is undoubtedly feeling the weight of a potential economic downturn. We’ve witnessed huge inflation, raised interest rates, and significant falls in equity. As a result, a lot of people have lost their jobs. But we don’t yet know if this economic slowdown is merely a blip or something more long-term. What we do know is that remote work isn’t going anywhere - and no amount of economic uncertainty will change that.
The Pandemic Has Changed Work Permanently
What was born out of the pandemic can’t be reversed; the momentum is already too strong. Remote work has leaped out of Pandora’s Box, and it won’t go back in no matter how much we might want a return to “normality.” But we must remember that it’s not a curse; it’s a massive opportunity.
Remote Work Is the Key to Attracting & Retaining Great Talent
Remote work - or at least the choice to work remotely - is good for employees. And what’s good for your employees is good for your business. A happier, more engaged team equals better productivity and better results. It’s also the key to getting great talent through the door - and retaining them. Even after two-plus years of working from home, employees haven’t tired of remote work - and in some countries, the right to request it is even being put into law.
Demand for remote work among employees has only increased, and searches for remote jobs are at an all-time high. Currently, 35% of job holders in the U.S. can work from home full-time, while 23% can do so part-time. But, when offered the chance to work flexibly, 87% would take the opportunity.
So employees - and some governments - certainly don’t consider remote work a trend. It’s their preferred reality, even in the midst of economic uncertainty. And that’s no surprise. With ever-increasing living costs, remote work offers employees the potential to save money (and time), particularly if their employer gives them a remote work stipend to cover increased energy bills.
It Can Save Your Company Money Too
The cost savings aren’t reserved for employees, though; your business can benefit from them too. According to new research, remote work could save employers a combined sum of more than $200 billion because workers are willing to accept smaller pay increases for the opportunity to work from home. Fewer onsite employees can also help businesses reduce spending on real estate, a significant and potentially unnecessary cost during economic uncertainty. If it’s a throw-up between reducing physical office space or letting go of employees, remote work allows you to protect your team and their jobs with little (or no) impact on productivity.
Global-first Businesses Are the Future
Finally, remote work opens up a global opportunity for companies to seize in difficult times. We’re more connected than ever before, and successful companies understand that businesses can hugely benefit from crossing borders, exploring opportunities around the world, and becoming a global-first employer.
Hiring remotely opens up your business to a wealth of new opportunities, whether it’s taking your product into lucrative new markets abroad, moving operations to more cost-effective regions, or building a global team of world-class experts. That’s why globalizing your business is a competitive advantage you shouldn’t deprioritize during times of uncertainty. Even if growth slows, it’s crucial to plan for the future and come out stronger - and remote, global-first work is the future.