This was the issue considered by a representative national sample of 121 Human Resources managers in November 2015 in a survey conducted by Home Office Careers. The objective of the survey was to understand the current and anticipated state of work from home employment as perceived and forecast by HR managers in the United States.
What We Discovered
The overall finding of this HR managers survey is that employees who work from home are a large & growing segment of the workforce; this segment is forecast to grow larger and more important to organizations
The HR managers report that an important percentage of their employees perform their work entirely or partially from home, and they project that work from home employees will increase in importance in 2016–2020. These findings coincide with recognized needs among some employees to accommodate longer commuting distances and to enable employees to balance work with family or lifestyle considerations.
Certain types of work, including customer support, transcription and data entry are not dependent upon employee interaction and group dynamics, and are among the more readily adaptable to home workers.
Another advantage of employing home workers accrues to their employers: A number of HR managers find home-based employees to be more cost-effective than traditional employees who work entirely at their facilities. This efficiencies trace in large part to not having to provide office or working space and other physical services.
Employers can benefit from these findings by recognizing the present and future importance and value of employees who are able to work outside their facilities at least part of the time, and in many instances, entirely.
Why We Conducted The Survey
As specialists in work from home job recruitment, we wanted to assess the degree to which employers engage home workers, and plan to engage them in the future, in comparison to traditional employees who work entirely at the employers’ facilities. We also wanted to know whether HR managers consider these work from home employees to be more cost-effective.
Nomenclature: The terms “work from home,” “at-home workers,” “home-office workers,” “telecommuters” and “outsourced workers” are used interchangeably and define employees who work entirely at home or partially at home and partially at the employer’s facilities.
Majority Engage Employees Who Work From Home
Two-thirds (64.6%) of HR managers report that part of their total workforce is working at home, either entirely or partially from home and partially at the organization’s facilities.
Home workers are not simply present in small numbers: These work at home employees or telecommuters account for at least one-fifth or 20% or more of total employees In about 12% of the organizations surveyed.
Observation: A Post-Recession Evolution
That a majority of organizations have become dependent on home-based employees to this impressive degree is testimony to trends that have been building since the Great Recession, which have been forcing traditional employment practices to evolve to provide employees with more flexibility, and to benefit employers’ with more cost-effective workforce alternatives.
Half Of Home-Based Employees Work Remotely 100% Of The Time
In focusing in on the types of work from home employees, there is a distinction between those who work entirely from home – they never go to their employer’s facilities – and those who work partially from home and partially at the employer’s place of work.
We were surprised to discover that employees who work entirely from home (and spend no time in the employer’s place of work) exist in nearly half – 48.3% – of the organizations.
What’s more, these totally at-home workers represent 10% or more of total employees among 16.7% of the employers; they account for 30% or more of employees in 6.1% of the companies surveyed.
Observation: Less Need For Physical Interaction
Having employee who have no physical engagement or contact with managers and fellow employees may be questioned by some employers, who believe it is essential for employees to interact at least part of the time; but there are some career options that enable an employee to work entirely from home, with a telephone, a laptop or desktop computer and broadband Internet connectivity. These jobs typically include customer support, transcription, data-entry and administrative work; these are jobs where creativity, idea generation and teamwork synergies are not necessary.
Home-Office Workers Who Are Employed Full Time
Another unexpected finding is the large percentage of home workers who are full time employees – defying expectations in the recruitment industry that almost all work from home workers are part time or contractors. Not the case apparently: Nearly one-third of HR managers report that 100% of their employees who work from home are full time employees and more than half – 57.6% – of HR managers confirm that at least 20% of those who work from home are full time employees.
Observation: Refuting Typical Perceptions Of At-Home-Workers
These findings contradict the common perception that work from home positions are reserved for part-time employees; and the perception full time employees are perceived as being committed to a greater extent than part-time workers, and therefore are expected to be present most or all the time at the employer’s facilities. These findings refute these perceptions and underscore the importance of work from home employees as an integral part of the total workforce.
Recruitment Ads Target Home-Workers
Job offer recruitment ads are indicative of the types of workers needed. It’s instructive that work from home positions account for over one-quarter (27.9%) of all recruitment ads in 2015.
Observation: A Reflection Of Recognized Needs
The relative importance of recruiting efforts for at-home workers points to the recognition by employers of the continuing need for part of their workforce to remain physically outside their facilities and is consistent with the other findings in this survey.
Home Workers Are More Cost-Effective
Our survey uncovered a clear benefit for employers: One-third (33%) of HR managers perceive degrees of cost saving by employing outsourced workers. Importantly, among these 33.3% who perceive savings with at-home workers, the majority of this group (70.3%) cites savings of 10% or more. In other words, those who recognize cost-effectiveness consider these savings to be appreciable.
Observation: Responding To Payroll Budgetary Constraints
Invariably budgetary constraints affect all organizations, and meeting manpower goals may be a prime force in HR managers turning to personnel who are able to work entirely or partly from home. Savings to the organization include not having to provide working space, and reimbursement for travel.
Planning To Increase Outsource Recruitment In 2016
The portion of employees who work from home is projected to increase. The survey shows that 21% of HR managers plan to increase recruitment of home-based workers to at least some degree in 2016, and 13.1% will increase recruitment by at least 10% or more.
A smaller percentage (6.1%) will increase by 20% or more. Only 2.7% expect to be decreasing home-based worker recruitment in 2016.
Majority To Have Home-Based Workers In 2020
Two-thirds (63%) of HR managers forecast their workforce in 2020 would include employees who work from home (full time and part-time) in 2020. A third (32.4%) project at least 10% of their workforce will work from home; 17.1% expect work from home workers to equal or exceed 30% of all workers.
Observation: 3 Factors Support The Projected Increases
The projections for 2016 and to 2020 point to a growing dependence on home-based workers; the underlying reasons, which include workers’ resistance to commuting and desires for a more balanced lifestyle, as well as cost-effectiveness benefits to employers would appear to be seen as growing in importance by HR manager
The increase in the acceptability of home-based employees is to be expected as organizations become increasingly receptive to alternative working conditions. As noted, it appears to be a combination of:
Increasing Requests To Work At Home
The rate of requests to work from home is stable or increasing for more than half of HR managers with 57.2% experiencing at least the same rate or an increase in requests to work from home from current and prospective employees. Focusing on increasing requests, 28.1% of HR managers are experiencing an increase of 10% or more requests and 14.6% see a 20% or more gain
Observation: Validating The Projections
Given the HR managers projections of increased recruitment of home-based workers working entirely or partly outside the organization’s facilities from 2016 through 2020, these findings based on present situations provide a foundation of credibility for the forecasts.
Some Home-Based Workers Can Be Challenging To Hire
The projected growth of the home-based worker segment of the workforce may present recruitment challenges: Two-thirds (65.1%) of HR managers consider home-based workers more difficult to hire than on-premises employees; while one-third (34.9%) find home-workers easier to hire.
Part-Time Workers Easier: Digging down, they report that home-based employees who work part-time are easier and faster to hire than those who work full time, according to 17.1% of HR managers.
Observation: Harder To Evaluate Employees Remotely
That a majority of HR managers considers home-workers (especially those who work full time) more difficult to hire is possibly due to the lack of physical contact during recruitment – many work from home positions are recruited remotely, through resume exchanges, and telephone interviews, but without the candidate appearing in person and interacting with the recruiter and other staff members.
Therefore, as more employers are recognizing the importance of home-based workers now and even more so in the future, the specialization of Home Office Careers and its exclusive dedication to this sector of the workforce become highly relevant. (More about how Home Office Careers can support recruitment below, or go to: Home Office Careers.com
How The Survey Was Conducted
An online questionnaire was administered to a national sample of HR managers. Respondents are geographically dispersed, and 42.9% of those responding are at the HR department manager level; the remainder being responsible for recruitment, compensation & benefits and future employment planning.
About Home Office Careers For Employers
Home Office Careers is a unique recruitment service dedicated exclusively to work-at-home jobs, and offers free job posting for employers. Employers may post as many positions as you need to fill, at no cost to you.
As more employers are recognizing the importance of home-based workers now and even more so in the future, the specialization of Home Office Careers and its exclusive dedication to this sector of the workforce become highly relevant.
The Home Office Careers Recruitment Advantage
Our job-seeking members are outstanding!
They are more serious and reliable than the average home-based workers because they are part of an elite group of home-office professionals ready immediately to fill all of your outsourced needs.
Our job seekers will save you time and money.
Not everyone gets to be a member of Home Office careers. So when you post through us, rather than be overwhelmed with hundreds of unqualified resumes, here you will have a smaller but pre-qualified response from top candidates. In other words, because of our career service model, we provide our employers with the best of the best, which is what every company needs.
You save money so you have more to compensate your new home-office workers.
Without needing to pay hundreds of dollars in job post fees, broker fees or headhunters; with Home Office Careers, you connect right away with our superior candidates, totally free. Not only will you have more money to pay your new home-based worker, you will have saved hours and days of your time not having to sort through hundreds of unqualified candidates.
Contact Us To Learn More
We can reached by phone 24/7 at: 888-888-6476 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org