13 Work from Home Perks That Are Here to Stay
The work from home age is upon us. What once felt temporary about a year ago is now here to stay. For those already used to gigs and working from home or coffee shops, it’s no big deal. (Likely, your generation.) For the rest, it might take some getting used to.
As it turns out, though, there is plenty to look forward to about getting used to everything. In fact, the following 13 changes that the WFH lifestyle have brought about are here to stay. Let’s get started!
1. Video Conferencing
Video conferencing has helped the workforce understand the inefficiency of the standard meeting. We no longer have to stop what we’re doing and be in the same place in order to fulfill work obligations. That’s not to say that you can afford to brush off the responsibilities of a meeting, but it is a more efficient way of consuming the information that is relevant while leaving the rest and having a better record of what transpired.
No longer is it necessary for someone else to take notes of what was said in a meeting when you can simply play back the record function and run to the relevant portion of the meeting on a platform like GoToMeeting. Direct questions can be IM’d to the individual responsible without interrupting the flow of the meeting and getting lost on side tangents. Video conferences might not eliminate the need for meetings, but they certainly provide a smarter way of keeping up.
2. No More Repeat Hellos
Think about how many times you used to pass someone in the hallway or at the restroom or as you come into work or school. You say hello in the morning. You walk by them two hours later and say hello again. If you’re really smart, you vary it up with something vapid like, “How’s it going?”
But eventually, you’re in repeats there as well, and neither of you even cared to ask or answer those questions in the first place. You simply did so because etiquette demanded it. It’s outdated, wastes time, and is awkward for everyone. Thanks to working from home, you can dispense with the forced pleasantries. No one will miss them.
3. Being Able to Sleep a Little Longer
Since remote technology platforms have taken hold during the pandemic and beyond, it has enabled us to take a little bit longer than we normally would and catch some much-needed extra sleep without actually being late to class or work. Of all the work from home perks that are here to stay, this is probably the one for which we’re all the most grateful, and from which we’ll inherit the most health and wellness benefits.
Few people get enough sleep. That can lead to all kinds of health issues that manifest later in life, especially after the pattern of sleepless nights has been established. Being able to sleep just a little bit longer can make a huge difference.
4. Flexible Work Schedule
The 8-5 work schedule is outdated, intrusive, and completely inefficient. Seriously, how many times a day do you find yourself getting lost in daydreams or wasting time on your phone simply because you have to be at work when there’s nothing immediately pressing that you have to do.
One study estimated that around half the typical workday is spent wasted because of such scheduling inefficiencies. The WFH lifestyle enables one to take care of issues as needed and design work around their life instead of the other way around. Ultimately, once one finds the balance in doing this, it becomes a more liberating way to live.
5. Getting More Done in Less Time
Companies will start to realize the money they’re wasting on idle time, but that doesn’t mean they’ll pay less. Instead, they’ll find ways to deliver a work experience that capitalizes on the added efficiencies while getting more productivity out of their employees than if they simply forced them to sit in an office chair for eight hours straight.
Employees who feel in charge of their time will want to make a bigger impact in their roles. They’ll also express a greater deal of satisfaction with their employer, company, and role within it.
6. For the Same Pay or Better
Piggybacking onto No. 5, it’s important to note that an employee who isn’t wasting so much time in a given workday will actually make the same money or better. That’s because they will be able to improve their processes and make the most of their idle time. This can be done in a number of ways that we’ll get further into in a moment.
For now, though, it’s important to realize that your employer isn’t going to cut your pay because you’re not showing up to work as much. Pay is less tied to your time than you think, and the WFH lifestyle will bear that out.
7. Gigging While You Work
One way that you can earn more money is by fitting in gigs while you “work” your normal hours. Signing up to drive for Uber or Lyft is one way. You can also do basic tasks for people willing to pay for them through applications like TaskRabbit.
If you have a special talent for writing or graphic design, sell your services on sites like Fiverr or Upwork or just start a website/blog and promote your services that way. Even hanging out on your phone and answering surveys or product testing digital offers through sites like InboxDollars can pick up some extra cash. There is no end to the opportunities out there. See what suits you, and take advantage!
8. Better Health and Wellness
Another thing that you can do in your free time that will both increase your earning potential and help you save a lot of money is reinvest some of your typical workday into health and wellness initiatives designed to keep you out of doctors’ offices and living a healthier lifestyle.
Run more, lift weights, ride your bicycle. Don’t let the work from home life make you lazy. Do something with that extra freedom that keeps your mind and body sharp, and it will pay dividends in many more areas of your life. You’ll be grateful you did!
9. More Ease in Starting a Business
Starting your own business takes time. It’s also a great exercise for developing work skills and confidence that can help you in your regular work day. And thanks to the work from home lifestyle and democratized technology, it’s easier than ever to get something going on the side while you work your regular job or go to school.
Starting a business doesn’t have to be difficult if you work as a sole proprietor. It’s a little more complicated if you’re dealing in product and want to seek other tax and liability protections based on how you incorporate and which documents and expenses you have to keep up with. Either way, though, you have more flexibility and freedom for figuring it out.
10. Better Chances to Improve Your Skills
While the gig economy itself can be a great way to expand your skill set while earning money, it’s not the only option you have for becoming more marketable. You can actually use your more flexible schedule to enroll in more classes, either at a university or a trade school, to complete work online. This will allow you to become a greater asset to the company where you’re working or more valuable to future companies.
There are a number of accredited and non-accredited ways to get the skills you need to have. Just do your research before paying any money and have a full understanding of the impact that the class can have for you as you agree to pay.
11. Rec Time During Work Hours
Feel like you’re all trained-up or that you do enough to warrant the extra recreation time? Well, you no longer have to wait until the end of the day when you’re exhausted to enjoy it all. Let’s face it. There are many forms of recreation vying for our time these days, from Netflix to the outdoors, books to binge-worthy television and movies.
However it is that you like to enjoy yourself, you can do it guilt-free during the day when you’re still alert and energetic as long as you’re using the work from home scheduling to your advantage and taking care of the things that need to be taken care of as they arise. It might mean being “always on,” but this type of work-life integration also dials down the stress that you feel around work.
12. Flexible Socialization
Work from home perks benefit both introverts and extroverts. As we’ve mentioned before, you’re forced into far fewer interactions that you don’t want to be a part of. For the extroverts, there are mass communication platforms that allow you to “get together” on screen and plan real-life meetups. (Hopefully socially distanced, of course.)
13. Fewer Expenses Related to Going to Work
The last perk that comes to mind is on the expense front. How many times do you try to stick to a budget only to be lured in by the offer of lunch with friends? Or maybe you just can’t resist the siren call of Starbucks and their $6 special coffees in the morning.
Spending money gets easier and easier once you start doing it, and that’s not good for your bottom line. Without having to get out of the house and be around all the extra temptations every day, it becomes easier to control so your financial goals stay on course.
Businesses Will Embrace the Work from Home Life
We know the Generation Z workers reading this are mostly already on board with the work from home lifestyle. It’s common now and will only get more common as you get older. For Millennials and Generation Xers still out there, it could take a little more time. The good news is that there are many perks to it that you’re going to be happy to embrace, if you haven’t already. Best of luck, and full steam ahead!
[Featured Image by Pixabay]