Date
26 July 2017
Technology has made it possible to work from almost anywhere now, offering benefits to both employees and the employers. Photo: Internet
Technology has made it possible to work from almost anywhere now, offering benefits to both employees and the employers. Photo: Internet

Why distance working will become more popular

Working from a distance is becoming far more common these days than most people think. This emerging model may in fact suit Hong Kong a lot.

According to a survey from office space supplier Regus, 48 percent of respondents said they spent at least half of their working hours away from the office, Hong Kong Economic Journal’s StartupBeat noted.

Technology has enabled individuals to be connected with the office through the Internet from almost anywhere. Backed by e-mail and instant messaging, communication with colleagues in the office is no longer a hurdle.

Numerous office application apps also make sharing of documents and signing of documents from away the office a piece of cake.

Oscar Venhuis from digital marketing firm MWI shared with StartupBeat a few reasons why it’s so cool to work from home, from cafe or while on the road.

First to note is cost savings. When less people need to come to the office, firms can opt for smaller space and cut rental expenditure. This advantage is particularly good in Hong Kong, where it can cost huge sums to rent an office.

Second is higher efficiency. Some employers might wonder if their staff would take it easy if they work from a remote location. But Venhuis, citing Stanford University research, says people are actually happier and are more efficient working from home. 

There will be less time wasted on travelling too. In Hong Kong, suppose one travels out of the office once a day, a round trip on average takes about one and a half hours. In a week, time spent on transportation almost equates a full working day.

Unimportant meetings in the office will be reduced. Meanwhile, in the meetings that are deemed necessary, people are likely to be more focused during the discussions.

Companies that are open to distance working will also find they will have wider options in recruiting, including access to overseas talent, Venhuis added.

If more companies become aware of the benefits, Hongkongers can look forward to a much more flexible and possibly better work life in the not so distant future.

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RC

EJ Insight writer

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