Managing a Remote Workforce and Key Considerations for Employers

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man smiling as he sips his coffee working remotely from his front porch

If the early 20th century brought the rise of the skyscraper and the plush corner office, it’s safe to say the 21st century has given birth to the mobile workplace and home office. One year ago, life changed. In March 2020, more than half the world closed down—schools and businesses shuttered because of the global pandemic. Increasing access to internet and the globalization of the world’s workforce has been nudging the corporate world to think remote work for years, but last year, the pandemic accelerated this change.

A recent study found that between 14 to 23 million Americans are planning to move as a result of remote work. Remote work used to be relegated to only certain sectors, but as more industries open up their requirements and regulations, employees are taking advantage of the opportunity to change locations. Urban and suburban spread have been upended as places of business have become less concrete. This change requires employers to remain adept and abreast of regulations and legal implications of these new working arrangements.

Employee Perks

Employee hiring and retention has always been top of mind for successful businesses, and now, offering “work-from-anywhere” remote policies are becoming the new normal. One study found that 75% of CFOs planned to increase the number of permanent remote workers after restrictions were lifted—and 60% of workers would like to remain remote. Simply not accommodating remote work is not an option, so managers and human resource professionals need to make these options available quickly.

When an employee wants to request a change to their workplace, many compliance facets of the position must be considered. From tax and payroll to cost of living adjustments, managers and HR professionals have a lot to consider. Evaluating these risks and cost implications of the change are complicated, which is where technology can help. Rating the costs of these risks and formulating implementation must be an organized process, and software, like Equus’ PinPoint Remote Work, can evaluate these complex questions quickly.

Change of Address

Determining that an employee can work remotely is only the beginning. With an eye toward retention, its important to let employees know that they are still valued, and one way to do so is to help facilitate this move. From packing to providing appropriate materials, moving the office home can only be successful with the right supplies. Partnering with the right vendors to make these supplies easily available is essential.

As employees move to different states and countries, international compliance becomes even more complex. With vaccinations gaining momentum and lockdowns ending, international travel—both short and long-term—will continue to become appealing to many employees. From insurance to workers compensation, laws and regulations look different in each state and country. Ensuring your business remains compliant is key to protecting yourself.

Being able to initiate these processes automatically once the request to work virtually has been granted, which PinPoint helps with, can help make this change seamless. Global companies need to be able to partner with third-party vendors and each department the employee works with. Communication with the rest of the business is unified, thanks to integration with HRIS systems and other Equus solutions.

Everyone Wins

When the world is upended, innovation thrives—which is why we’re seeing the business world adjust and transition in ways like never before. More and more employees are looking to work from home, relocate within their home country or internationally, or adjust their working hours outside of the standard 9 to5. Considering these requests and finding ways to make sure that employees and employers benefit from these changes is the only way forward.

By utilizing a centralized request management and vendor integration solution, workload for HR and finance teams can be reduced and employees can receive an answer quickly. Finding acceptable working arrangements—that also meet compliance and tax regulations—give businesses peace of mind and allow them to provide amenities that keep them competitive in the market—no matter where that market is.

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