Not having to wake up early or put up with a lengthy commute are just two reasons why working from home can seem so enticing to employees. The number of workers taking advantage of this option is only expected to rise, as Forrester Research projected the U.S. telecommuter workforce will increase to 63 million by 2016.
While many employees can maintain a high level of productivity whether at the office or in the comfort of their own home, others struggle in a less-structured work setting. Before companies embrace a corporate relocation plan that will transform employees into remote workers, they should watch for a few signs that these individuals may not be ready to work from home.
1. They’re unreliable
Does an employee show up late to work on a regular basis? When lunchtime rolls around, does he or she go missing for over an hour? Maybe this individual also ducks out early whenever possible. These are all signs that someone may not be the most reliable remote worker. If an individual thinks he or she can get away with all of this in an office setting, who knows what will happen when completely unsupervised.
2. They’re too social
Having great co-workers is a perk of any job, but these office friends shouldn’t get in the way of productivity. If a worker always seems to spend more time at friends’ desks than his or her own, how much is really getting done? Furthermore, if time spent at one’s desk is devoted to chatting on the Web or posting on social media websites, then allowing this employee to work at home may not be in a company’s best interest.
3. They’re too isolated
On the other end of the social spectrum, if a worker is more on the introverted side, he or she could become more distant away from the office. While co-workers don’t need to spend every waking hour together, collaborating in the same setting can foster creativity and innovation that may not be as easy to achieve through email.
4. They struggle
Some workers are natural born problem-solvers who’re able to surmount the issues of the day on their own. Then, there are the employees who feel more comfortable taking problems to a supervisor or co-worker. While there’s nothing wrong with getting a second opinion, perhaps these individuals would be better off working in close proximity to those who can assist them, as opposed to chasing their colleagues via email or phone.
5. They’re essential
And then, there are the employees who are just too vital to productivity to be away from the office for too long. Maybe they’re managers, individuals who work across departments or those who are charged with bringing newer employees up to speed. No matter the case, such employees shouldn’t be away from the action for too long, or productivity could begin to suffer.
Of course, what’s true of one employee isn’t necessarily true of another, but with these signs in mind, companies will be better-equipped to ensure productivity doesn’t dip. At the same time, workers will know what they need to improve on before they get to enjoy the perk of catching an extra hour or two of sleep every morning.