By: Aris Apostolopoulos
It feels like the whole world is going remote. And with so many companies moving in this direction, we’re not talking about a trend anymore rather than a new way of doing business.
In the beginning, surveys and research were focused on what companies and managers thought of remote working. Questions like, “Is it effective?” “Can it be done?” “How can you know that your remote workers work?” were common.
But those days are gone. Now that remote work is becoming ubiquitous, studies are equally interested in exploring what remote employees think about flexible work.
The bottom line is remote work is here to stay, and we’ve got the latest remote work stats to prove it.
The TalentLMS’ remote work survey asked remote workers about the way they work, train, as well as how they view their current remote work career.
The profile of remote workers
The first question the survey sought to answer was who these 450 remote workers were. So, the first questions were all about their personality, way of living, and business models.
According to the survey, 58% of the sample are women, 46% are married, and their average annual income is between $25,000 to $80,000.
Seventy percent are between 25 and 44 years old, and 72% found their job online via a digital job board, like Indeed or LinkedIn.
As for personality, 28% describe themselves as introverts, 34% as extroverts, and 38% as both.
When asked about the most important personality traits and remote work skills needed to be a successful remote worker, they indicated: organizational skills, time management, communication skills, and self-discipline.
How do remote workers actually work?
First of all, remote workers work. And, they work a lot.
90% of this sample of remote workers say they get more work done when working from home.
To stay focused, respondents said they rely on their ears to boost their productivity when working remotely. To begin with, 31% work in a separate home office space to gather their thoughts and work in privacy. But only 21% work in complete silence, 25% work with some background noise (like radio, TV, etc.), and 38% work with some music on (21% meditative and 17% loud).
But working alone for 8 hours can be exhausting. And if you think that remote workers don’t work fixed hours, you might want to think again. Sixty percent of remote workers say they work fixed hours and that they have to follow a 9-5, five-days-a-week working schedule as if they were working in a physical office.
The sample admitted that, sometimes, loneliness is unavoidable. To fight this feeling of isolation, they usually turn to technology and use communication apps to talk with friends and coworkers (43%), visit the office for some face-to-face interaction (37%), or work from a public space (15%).
Generally speaking, communication plays an integral part in remote working. When TalentLMS asked remote workers about the tools they use the most, 27% picked Skype, 13% WhatsApp, and 12% Google Hangouts. This means that 52% of the apps used the most by remote workers have to do with communication.
How do remote workers train?
Training is essential when trying to keep a team motivated, aligned with the company, and happy. Contrary to popular belief, remote workers do receive training. At least 87% of them.
When asked about the source of that training, 70% said they received it directly from their company, while 17% find, get, and pay for their own courses.
But how do remote workers receive training? Of course, 85% of the training is received online with the most popular types being:
Online courses (50%)
Mobile learning (22%)
But is it enough? To put it simply, no. As a matter of fact, 67% of remote workers who receive training say they’d like to receive more.
The future of remote working
So, this is the state of remote working. This is how remote workers work, train, and feel about their careers. But what about the future?
According to the survey, 85% said that working from home was their decision while 60% admit they’d like their job less if they had to go to work every day and do the exact same job. Also, the remote work population will likely increase with experienced members “recruiting” new ones — 88% say they’d recommend a remote work career to their best friend.
So, with a community that’s getting bigger and more satisfied with their work-from-home careers, one thing is for sure: The workplace of the future is homemade.
Aris Apostolopoulos is a content writer at TalentLMS and a follower of the continuous learning philosophy. His work can be found at TalentLMS Blog where he publishes long-form reports and posts on the latest eLearning news and trends.