Why Parking Employers Should Embrace Remote Workers
On the fence about whether or not you should embrace remote workers in your business?
The buzz surrounding remote work is growing and, from all indications, it’s here to stay. As organizations seek to gain a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting and retaining top talent, employers are increasingly offering their workers this alternative arrangement. The number of remote workers in the United States rocketed 115 percent between 2005 to 2017 from 1.8 million to 3.9 million.
Although there are challenges that come with hiring and managing a remote workforce, the reality is that the benefits often outweigh the negatives.
Not convinced? Remote work is beneficial for both employers and employees in many ways. Here are just a few of the top reasons why hiring remote workers may be a smart move for parking industry employers.
Expanded talent pool. Employers have traditionally relied on finding the right person for a position within commuting distance from their offices. Failing that, you would have to choose from a pool of candidates willing to relocate to your geographic location. Hiring remote workers changes all of that. Without the limitations of geography, you can instead focus fully on finding the best person to fill each role in your organization.
And for parking industry employers, this holds real value. Kevin Uhlenhaker, Co-Founder of NuPark, which was recently acquired by Passport, built his company entirely with a remote workforce. “When I was looking to hire my first employees, I realized there is no singular location in the U.S. that is a hub for parking talent. By being open to workers from any location, I could choose the right person for the job, not just the person in the right location,” says Uhlenhaker.
Reduced costs. The cost of keeping all your employees under the same roof is an expense that just keeps growing, especially in major cities. “When I was just starting NuPark, we had no venture backing. So, the question was, why incur expensive monthly overhead to just keep the lights on?” explains Kevin. “With remote workers, there wasn’t any square footage needed to run the business. Instead, money that we would have had to use for rent and utilities could be invested right back into the business or improve cash flow.”
But the cost savings aren’t just on the end of the employer. With high gas prices and the rising costs of public transportation, commutes today are not only depressing, they’re also expensive. According to research, the average remote worker saves approximately $4,600 per year.
Higher productivity levels. If you are worried about employees taking advantage of a remote work environment, don’t be. This may seem counterintuitive, but remote workers are actually more productive than their counterparts working in an office. This can be attributed to various factors.
Remote workers aren’t burdened with a commute, they enjoy better work-life balance, and are insulated from daily distractions that take place in an office, such as idle chats with colleagues or impromptu meeting requests. They don’t call in for illness as often and are more likely to work overtime. Research shows that people with more autonomy over their schedules work longer hours regardless of job type or level. According to a recent Global Workplace Analytics survey, 53 percent of remote workers stated they were likely to work overtime, as opposed to 28 percent of in-office employees.
Also, not everyone is most productive between the hours of 9 to 5. While some workers are night owls, doing their best work long after the sun sets, other workers are morning people, whose productivity is optimal well before the sun comes up. Remote workers can structure their days in a way that makes the most sense and align their work schedules for the times when they are the most productive.
One size does NOT fit all. Let’s face it, not all employees will view such new found freedom as a way to become more productive. There will be those individuals in your company who will become less productive. One of the keys, therefore, to a successful remote work organization is the ability to hire the right people.
“I looked for professionals who have displayed high levels of autonomy and self motivation in previous jobs and roles,” notes Kevin. “And when it came to hiring managers, I looked for people who had some previous remote management experience.”
Still not convinced? Hiring remote workers isn’t right for everyone or in every situation. You need to have trust in your employees and have aspects in your business that aren’t hands-on, manual labor. And most importantly, you need to be able to let go of certain managerial oversight aspects that you may have controlled. However, if these scenarios apply to your company, then hiring remote workers might give your organization a competitive advantage.