A recent survey from FlexJobs found that 65% of people said they would prefer to work at home full-time after the pandemic and 31% would prefer a hybrid work arrangement (a combination of work from home and in-office). 95% say productivity has been higher or the same while working remotely.
If you want to continue working remotely but aren’t sure how to approach the conversation with your boss, implement the below suggestions. The goal is to engage in a productive dialogue with your boss that supports your goal of a more permanent work-from-home arrangement while also expressing its immense benefits to your employer.
1. First, schedule a call with your boss. Make the goals of the call clear up front: Send them a formal written request in advance to continue working remotely instead of returning to the office. A letter addressing all the logistics before the meeting is helpful in setting the stage. It also gives your boss time to think about your request before the meeting.
Within your request, illustrate your reasoning for permanent remote working and explain how working from home permanently will benefit your employer. Some examples could include:
- Detail your productivity on specific work from home projects
- Suggest the ability to use fewer PTO or sick days because you’re able to work through mild illnesses, be home for sick children, etc. (If applicable, reference times you’ve done this and still accomplished your workload).
- Highlight your faster turnaround times on projects, creative content, brainstorming sessions or client requests due to increased focus outside of typical office distractions.
- Cite your past/current availability and flexibility both inside and outside of traditional office hours, allowing pressing matters to be addressed in real-time.
- Illustrate the recently enhanced team creativity, streamlined project functionality and stronger working relationships gained through new collaboration and communication tools.
- Express your commitment to upholding your work contribution and quality while simultaneously gaining the capability to address out-of-work circumstances.
2. Next, propose a potential work schedule and communication cadence to put your employer at ease, set expectations and create a visual of how working remotely can function successfully.
- Determine how many days you’d like to work remotely. (e.g., 2 to 3 days a week, all five days, or just making office visits for meetings, etc.)
- Establish how long you’d like to work remotely (e.g., until Summer 2021, indefinitely, etc.)
- Volunteer to make office visits as needed for in-person meetings, gatherings, events, etc.
- Commit to maintaining outstanding communication to ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
- Reassure your availability during work hours through phone, email, text and chat with collaboration tools like Slack, Zoom, etc.
- Plan to announce your daily arrival and departure every day as you did in the office.
- Suggest submitting a daily report via email or updating on collaboration tools your daily tasks and projects accomplished to keep superiors and team informed and in the loop.
- Dial into all meetings and use video whenever possible.
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Lastly, express your gratitude for your employer’s consideration of remote work; it is a privilege, not a right. If your employer is uncertain, suggest a trial period to see how remote work affects your performance and team collaboration.
As we leave the pandemic behind, we may see more corporate companies expanding their employees’ compensation packages with the added benefit of working remotely to accommodate the future of work.