Working from home is often the most esteemed and coveted of all flexible employment arrangements. With this in mind, if you had the potential to work remotely and make a choice on benefits, what would you sacrifice to work from home? Would you be willing to make a sacrifice? Should you even have to?
According to FlexJobs’ survey of people who want flexible jobs, we came across some interesting benefits that people would be willing to give up in order to have the ability to work from home. There were also equally interesting and entertaining benefits willing to be sacrificed by employees in an infographic titled “Telework – Flexible, Effective, & Seamless.”
Let’s take a look at what employees are willing to sacrifice in order to work from home.
What FlexJobs’ survey respondents would sacrifice:
- 22.9% – Take a 10% cut in pay
- 22.9% – Take a reduction in hours
- 22.5% – Health benefits
- 21.8% – Some vacation time
- 17.9% – Work longer hours
- 16.2% – Employer-matched retirement contributions
At FlexJobs, we don’t think you should have to give up anything in order to work from home…except maybe your long commute, frustrating coworkers, and office politics! But we’re amazed to see just how important being able to telecommute is to professionals.
Before you really do give up something in order to work from home, check out our tips on How to Negotiate a work-from-home arrangement! (below)
Benefits willing to be given up (see infographic):
- 34% – Social Media
- 30% – Texting
- 29% – Chocolate
- 25% – Smartphones
- 20% – Shopping
- 17% – A pay raise
- 15% – Half of vacation days
- 12% – Showers
- 5% – A spouse
How to Negotiate a Work-from-Home Arrangement
Here are some suggestions for how to negotiate a work-from-home arrangement:
Talk it up.
When you are ready to negotiate a work-from-home arrangement, you may want to run through a few work-at-home options with your supervisor—full-time telecommuting, working partly from home and partly from the office, a flexible schedule arrangement, or some mix that meets everyone’s satisfaction. A sit-down with your supervisor can go a long way toward persuading your boss to give a work-at-home situation a try. Go in fully armed, have your talking points ready, and be fully prepared to build your case.
Write it up.
Once you’ve laid the groundwork, a written proposal can both formalize the idea and give you a chance to emphasize that remote work offers benefits for the company as well as for you. This is your chance to debunk some of the myths about telecommuting—that workers are less productive and that they miss out by not having face-time with colleagues, to name just two.
Take a trial run.
You’ve gotten the green light for a test run—good going! Now’s your time to demonstrate how well you can adjust to working from home, and how good a deal it is for you and your boss. This is probably the most crucial period of your “negotiation.” Do your best to keep the quality of your work high and to produce as steadily at home as you do in the office.
Be prepared to tweak.
If a work-from-home setup is breaking new ground for you and your employer, there’s bound to be some trial-and-error involved. See what works and what doesn’t. For example, if your trial involves working from home for only part of your workday or workweek, figure out if some days are better than others to work remotely, or if mornings are better than afternoons.
If not now, maybe later.
If your powers of persuasion aren’t enough to convince your boss to allow you to work remotely, it may be a matter of timing. The push for work flexibility is gaining traction, and there’s mounting evidence that telecommuting is good for business and workers. Think about approaching your boss again in the future. If things still don’t work out, it may be time to set your sights elsewhere to find a job with a flexible schedule! Sometimes it is better find a new job than repeatedly attempt to negotiate a work-from-home arrangement.