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  • 5 Ways the Cloud Makes Remote Workers Feel More Connected

    Remote work is increasingly becoming a popular setup for both employees and businesses. Some onlookers are skeptical of the telecommuting model, wondering if these workers are productive and engaged. Even if remote workers do their duties, don’t they feel lonely?

    Among non-self-employed populations, work-at-home options grew 115 percent since 2005, about 10 times faster than the rest of the workforce. At least half of the existing workforce holds jobs compatible with remote work.

    Remote workers may feel lonely sometimes, but they’re certainly not isolated from the world or their colleagues and employers. If anything, the cloud boosts interconnectivity.

    Remote Work Increases Wellness and Satisfaction on the Job

    Remote work allows 77 percent of employees to get more done and increase their job satisfaction as a result, ultimately reducing turnover rates. The statistics continue to work in favor of the remote workforce, their health and employers:

    • 23 percent are open to working longer when off-site
    • 35 percent better their exercise routines
    • 32 percent eat healthier
    • 45 percent get a better quality of sleep
    • 53 percent experience reduced stress

    Remote work provides a healthy win-win situation for both employees and employers. With reduced stress levels and increased wellness, employees feel eager to give back to the employer.

    The prospect of working from home seems isolating at first, but it provides remote workers with more peace of mind. Here are five ways the cloud keeps remote workers connected to company work culture:

    1. Remote Workers Videoconference

    In theory, the only face a remote worker should see is their own in the mirror as they brush their teeth in the morning, but that’s a myth. Videoconferencing enables employers to stay in contact with their remote workers and provide real-time support as they check in. The open-door policy is still alive and well.

    Only 13 percent of workers are engaged in work at traditional on-site jobs, and videoconference meetings let team members see each other, remain engaged and build company culture through the encouragement of collaboration.

    Where videoconferencing becomes the norm, remote workers jump aboard with collaborative efforts. Videoconference meetings are more likely to be to-the-point than typical meetings, boosting engagement levels by 87 percent, according to one study.

    1. Remote Workers Still Call

    As a part of their jobs, remote workers still make and receive phone calls, and they have their own extensions. Like videoconferencing, employers can check up on the employee with a quick call and employees may call the office with a question to clarify or if they feel sick.

    All elements of the traditional office haven’t been swept away — they’ve simply improved with the ability of workers to get their jobs done remotely.

    1. Remote Workers Share an Office, Too

    Alone in a room, a remote worker types away at their keyboard, but they’re not lonely. In fact, remote workers share an office of sorts via a hosted virtual desktop: Telecommuters may access applications and files from any location worldwide, turn in work and chat. With streamlined user experiences, a worker logs into their workspace and gets to work in their shared space.

    The cloud is the most private office you could ask for as an employee while still having the capability to engage with others.

    1. Remote Workers Maintain a Social Presence

    Working remotely doesn’t mean telecommuters are stuck at home staring at the same four walls. Remote workers may work out of a coffee shop or in a co-working space, but they’re not limited to these options for social engagement.

    Innovation thrives on social interaction and engagement in conversation. Remote workers maintain connected to the office with telepresence bots that give them a physical presence in the office. Pop-up chat windows encourage conversation along with phone calls and videoconferencing. Employers don’t expect remote workers to stay at home and feel isolated.

    1. Remote Workers Share in the Mission

    In a traditional office, the mission statement might consist of lovely words grouped together on a piece of paper — a formality that symbolizes a code of conduct, but it’s much more for those who telecommute.

    Remote workers share in the mission every day they sit down, seemingly alone, to work. These words are encouraging and provide a touchstone of motivation for remote workers to do their best every day.

    Many assume the life of a telecommuter is lonely, but that’s not the case. Having the privacy of working remotely enables employees to place more meaningful thought into their duties.

    All the traditional elements of the office are there, from meetings to conference calls, but better — employees who work from home experience boosted levels of productivity, reduced stress levels and an increase of taking on healthier wellness habits. The cloud creates interconnectivity and boosts levels of employee engagement. While they may look lonely, remote workers are far from alone at home.

    Sarah Landrum is a freelance writer and Digital Marketing Specialist. She is also the founder of Punched Clocks, a site dedicated to sharing advice on navigating the work world. Passionate about helping others find happiness and success in their careers, she shares advice on everything from the job search and entrepreneurship to professional development, and more! Follow her for more great tips @SarahLandrum

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