How Small Business Owners Can Save Money by Having Employees Work from Home

The way business is done has changed because of the coronavirus outbreak. Businesses are implementing new safety protocols to minimize the risk of virus exposure for both employees and customers. How have your business practices changed in recent months? One common trend is that companies are encouraging employees to work from home when possible.

The Shift to Work from Home Positions

While there has been a big shift to work from home employment opportunities in recent years, the COVID-19 situation has pushed employers to implement these practices unexpectedly. Some companies have been on the fence about employees working outside of the office. But we live in a digital world, which means that many of the projects can be completed off-site without a disruption to productivity.

One benefit of the COVID-19 outbreak is that many business owners are seeing that work from home positions are a smart business decision. This trend is turning into the “new normal” to reduce exposure in the office and maintain social distancing between employees.

Because of the current pandemic situation, there are no signs that telecommuting will slow. It is anticipated that these work from home arrangements will continue after the virus has been contained.

Both Physical and Online Businesses are Affected

If you own a physical location, then it is obvious that these in-person interactions can increase the risk of virus exposure. Since it is an airborne illness, the virus can be transmitted by spending time in close proximity with other people who are infected.

Even if a person isn’t displaying any symptoms of Coronavirus, it is possible that they are a carrier and spreading it to other people. There are reports of asymptomatic patients, as well as carriers who are contagious before they start displaying symptoms. Businesses with physical locations, such as grocery stores and pharmacies, are implementing new practices such as mask policies, social distancing, and other practices. Some employees have been sent to work from home, such as inventory managers and other employees who can complete their jobs remotely.

While it is obvious that physical businesses would be affected by the current pandemic, don’t underestimate the impact on online businesses as well. Customers are minimizing the time spent in local stores, which means that more people are turning to online shopping options. Even though there is no face-to-face interaction between employees and customers, employees still need to be in the workplace to fulfill orders and manage shipping. Not only can employees be at risk in the workplace, but reports have warned about the possibility of contamination on the shipping packages.

As you can see, this pandemic is having a far-reaching effect in many industries. As such, companies are looking for new ways to keep the business running while practicing safety protocols at the same time.

Financial Benefits of Employees Working from Home

Have you decided to shift to a work from home situation for some or all of your employees? As you have made these changes, notice the financial benefits that are available for your company. In fact, many businesses are deciding to change their policies going forward. When the pandemic is over, employees will continue working from home instead of bringing everyone back to the office again.

This shift in workspace reduces the need for desks in the office. Employers can save quite a bit of money on reduced expenses for:

  • Office space
  • Utilities
  • Desks and chairs
  • Breakroom maintenance
  • Cleaning and janitorial
  • Office supplies
  • Coffee and water
  • Transit subsidies

One report suggested that if employees work from home only half the time, the business would save $11,000 per year. Consider the financial impact on your company if the majority of employees start working from home full-time!

Working from Home: Part Time or Full Time?

Even if you don’t move to a full-time work from home situation, financial benefits can still be gained by having employees at home on a part-time basis. Spending a few days a week away from the office makes it easier to maintain social distancing, because employee schedules can be staggered throughout the week.

On the other hand, if there is no need to have employees in the office, then shifting to a full-time work from home status could be beneficial for everyone involved. As a business owner, you can save a significant amount on office space, while providing ongoing work opportunities for your employees.

Other Financial Benefits of Working from Home

It’s easy to add up the savings that come from cutting office space and decreasing utility expenses. At the same time, there are other financial benefits that are harder to quantify. For example, many employees report higher job satisfaction when working from home, which reduces employee turnover. Happy employees stay with the company for longer, helping you avoid the need to spend money on recruiting, hiring, and onboarding.

Employee turnover costs companies thousands of dollars in recruiting and onboarding. Additionally, you need to calculate the cost of lost productivity as well. These expenses can add up quickly, which cuts into your profits and makes it harder to keep your company viable in a slow economy.

If you want to help your business thrive through the current economic downturn, then you need to implement all of the ways that you can cut costs and boost sales at the same time. This current pandemic can be viewed as an opportunity to optimize your current business systems. Many companies are adjusting their business practices and finding ways to decrease inefficiencies.

Maintaining Productivity When Employees are Working from Home

You can tally up the savings of having employees work from home because of the reduced costs for office space and equipment. At the same time, it is important to ensure that productivity is maintained when the employees are out of the office. Good systems and communication can keep the employees in a proactive mindset with their work tasks, ensuring they are staying on-point throughout the workday.

Additionally, you should consider the type of work your employees are doing each day. If employees need focused time free of distractions, then some people experience an increase in productivity when they are working out of the office. While it is nice to have the social interactions in an office space, the wasted water cooler time can definitely add up. Stepping away from the office distractions can have a positive impact to boost productivity.

The key to maintaining productivity with work from home programs is to ensure that your employees have access to quality digital tools. Many companies are using high-quality video conferencing to keep team members connected from different locations. Additionally, messaging tools, email, and ongoing communication can keep everyone connected, even if they aren’t meeting in person.

Accessing the Talent Needed for Your Company

Not only can your business save money on overhead costs, but it is possible that work from home opportunities can also help your business grow. When you are no longer limited by geographic location, you can tap into a larger pool of talent for your company.

Hiring a range of skill sets can boost overall performance within the company, helping to bring innovative thinking and increased productivity to all departments. Dialing in the right team for business support can be a valuable way to move the company forward and help you reach higher levels of success in the future.

Financial Benefits for Both Employers and Employees

Overall, financial benefits are available for both employers and employees. As a business owner, you can save money on all of the things listed above. At the same time, your employees benefit because they can avoid the costs of transportation and commute. The average employee spends an hour each day commuting to and from the office. Eliminating this commute results in a smaller personal transportation budget, and frees up time to spend with family. This commuting time can also be spent on work-related projects if extra hours are needed during a busy season.

Optimizing Your Business

There are two important keys to optimize your business: reduce costs and increase revenue. The foundation of these changes needs to start in your financial management. It is important to monitor the money that is flowing in and out of your accounts so you can identify areas of opportunity. If you are looking for new solutions, then it might be time to bring on a financial expert for assistance.

At Easier Accounting, we offer tax strategy and financial support for small businesses. Whether you have a workforce in the office or a group of work from home employees, we can assist with everything from payroll management to tax strategy to annual filings. If you are interested in learning more about how your business can benefit from accounting services, then we invite you to contact us for support. We provide personalized solutions to support your business finances throughout the year.

Call us at Easier Accounting to talk to a financial expert who specializes in small business services: (888) 620-0770.

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