Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on FlexJobs.com.
There’s no doubt about it – remote working has been a banner year behind it.
While many of the well-known remote working statistics help tell the story of how far it has come in recent years, there is still a lot to discover. We dug deep to find these fun facts about remote working!
A distant future
According to the US Census Bureau, only 5.2% of employees in the US worked full time from home in 2019.
Of course, COVID-19 bans sent a lot more home to work, but as of March 2021 – more than a year after the pandemic started – nearly six in ten (58%) of American working adults were still working at least partially from home Time.
Now that employers and employees alike have recognized the benefits of remote working, an estimated 22% of the American workforce (36.2 million people) will be remote by 2025. This is an 87% increase over pre-pandemic numbers!
Benefits for the environment
While most people realize that working from home is better for the environment, the actual numbers are astonishing.
For example, if 3.9 million employees work remotely for at least half of the time, the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is equivalent to shutting down over 600,000 cars annually.
When you consider that roughly 39 million Americans plan to work remotely in 2021, that number jumps to 6,000,000 fewer cars on the road! With 13 to 27 million people working from home for the next several years, remote working will reduce commute miles by 70 to 140 billion each year.
And when remote workers make greener decisions in their home offices – such as using less paper and monitoring heating and lighting usage – they are likely to have the same impact on air quality as planting a forest of 91 million trees.
There is an assumption that remote jobs allow employees to work from anywhere, but it’s actually not. In fact, 95% of remote jobs have specific location requirements.
That’s true! Whether it’s legal and tax considerations, customer-based work, licensing requirements, or various other factors, most remote jobs require workers to live in a specific city, state, country, or region.
The good news is that more and more companies are realizing the benefits of expanding their candidate pool beyond their immediate geographic locale and giving employees the ability to work from anywhere.
It is clear that working from home can save employees money, but how much exactly can remote workers save?
Statistics show the average remote worker can save around $ 4,000 a year! The greatest savings come from eliminating or reducing commuting costs, including:
- Car maintenance
- Car insurance
- Public transportation
Remote workers also save by eliminating the need to buy work clothes, eating out as much and taking advantage of tax breaks from home.
Is your furry (or scaly) friend an integral part of your home life? FlexJobs’ work-life relationship survey found that 85% of respondents say flexible work options, including remote working, would help them be better pet owners.
Working from home naturally allows people to spend more time with all of those they love.
Unsurprisingly, the flexibility of working remotely improves the quality of life and promotes both mental and physical health in a variety of ways:
- Helps people take better care of their mental health (80%)
- Reduces stress (83%)
- Increases the time they spend exercising (67%)
In a FlexJobs survey at Mental Health America, respondents said they were also open to participating in virtual mental health solutions offered in the workplace, such as:
- Meditation Sessions (45%)
- Healthy Eating Courses (38%)
- Virtual training courses (37%)
As the economy and labor market continue to recover, certain industries are poised to take the flexible and remote labor market by storm.
These five fastest growing career categories have seen more than 10% growth in flexible job openings since early 2021:
- Virtual administration
- HR & recruiting
- Non-Profit and Philanthropy
- SEO and SEM
There is a belief that people need to be physically together to foster the creativity and brainstorming that are essential to business success.
However, research shows that the workplace of employees does not affect team creativity in the workplace. In particular, employees are likely to agree that their teams are the same or more creative when working completely remotely (53%) or on a hybrid remote agreement (54%) compared to working full-time in an office (53%).
Remote work experience
When hiring for remote positions, employers would like to see previous remote experiences. However, many job seekers assume that this just means a traditional work-from-home job.
Indeed, remote experiences come in many forms and can include any of the following:
- Take online lessons
- Distance degrees and certifications
- Occasionally work from home
- Temporary remote work (i.e. during the pandemic)
- Work via email, phone, and online collaboration
- Working with people in different time zones
- Remote volunteering
If you’re wondering whether your remote experience “counts” when applying for remote jobs, ask yourself, “Was I productive and effective, did I volunteer or study remotely? Have I done enough to talk about it during an interview? “
If you can both answer “yes”, this counts! As you prepare your application, make sure that you showcase your remote work experience on your resume in a way that potential employers will notice.
FlexJobs’ work-life relationship survey asked 3,900 people how a flexible workplace would affect various aspects of their non-work life, including their romantic relationships. Respondents said that flexible work:
- Benefit from their romantic relationship: 64%
- Improve their sex life: 64%
- Help Them Be a More Caring Spouse / Partner / Significant Companion: 80%
- Increase available time for dates / date nights: 53%
Cover letters are still important
Whether you’re applying for remote, office, or hybrid jobs, cover letters are still an important part of your applications.
In a ResumeLab survey of 200 hiring managers, 83% of hiring managers agreed that a cover letter could help job seekers get an interview even if the resume isn’t perfect.
When cover letters are “optional” for an application, 77% of recruiters said they would prefer candidates who submit one. Applications with a custom cover letter typically lead to 50% more interviews than applications without a cover letter.
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