The advent of remote work has meant that many people are doing their jobs to the best of their abilities outside of the office. Remote work brings with it the freedom to tick off tasks from a favorite coffee shop, the in-laws’ house, or even in pyjamas under the covers. It also brings with it the endless possibilities of global hiring, where a company can hire anyone from anywhere around the world as long as they’ve got a stable internet connection.
Remote work can sometimes be referred to as “working from home”, a term which itself isn’t without confusion. Is working from home the same as working remotely? The short answer is no, but both are lifestyles, and both can be accomplished by freelancers as well as contracted employees. They share many similarities but have differences as well. In this article, we explore.
Working from home
As a non-exhaustive list, people who work from home usually have the following elements in their lifestyle:
A specific area where they work
This could be an office but can also just be a place that’s set aside specifically for work. This is usually a necessity for most people as bringing work into the home can mean that work-life boundaries are blurred. Many people find that working in the same place that they sleep, eat, or relax in makes being productive really difficult.
Having a dedicated space makes working easier as it helps people get into the working mode and mindset that they need to get things done.
A reason or reasons to be working only from home and not travelling while doing so
A few examples of such reasons are:
- Younger children
- Elderly parents or relatives that need to be taken care of
- Demanding work hours
- A job that requires access to local amenities and locations
A job that may require them to come into the office or be performed on-site
Great examples would be engineers or teachers. For some jobs, employees simply need to be near where the main function of their job occurs. Teachers and engineers can perform some jobs online, but will need to be back on site either often or for a majority of the time.
While remote work can be a lifestyle, it can also be a more casual engagement. People who work from home may also do remote work from time to time, and vice versa. Remote work usually consists of:
Not being tied down to just working from home
Most commonly, people who work remotely don’t have anything really tying them down to just working from home. They don’t have to worry about relatives or pets, and are free to move where they choose to.
A job that can be done without any face-to-face contact
Some great examples are people who deal with software and technology and online content creators like writers or bloggers. If there is no need for employees to physically meet their employers, then there aren’t really any barriers to the employees’ freedom; as long as they get the job done, it doesn’t matter where they do it from.
Many companies take advantage of the many benefits that global hiring can bring. With remote working opportunities, employers can enjoy the freedom to hire a great employee from anywhere around the world without needing to pay for a work visa for them to be where the company is. There’s great software available that can make onboarding and managing remote employees really easy (or so we’ve heard!).
Of course, remote workers travel a lot. “Travel” usually refers to the type of travel that happens across state or country borders, but many remote workers also just take advantage of their opportunities to travel in their own locale. They might finish their tasks in a coffee shop, local library, or even in the park. Why not? They don’t have the same restrictions that people who only work from home do.
The similarities between working from home and working remotely
All forms of remote work, no matter where they take place, feature the following:
- Can be a lifestyle
- Can be a one-off or occasional occurrence
- Self-control, self-motivation, and self-discipline
- The need for a healthy work-life balance
While both working from home and working remotely are very similar, there are little differences. The bottom line is that employers don’t usually mind which of the two their employees are doing. Employers’ main concerns are:
- Being able to communicate with their employees
- Jobs that need to be done get done on time
- Jobs are done well
- There is quality communication between employees (where applicable)
- The availability of a reliable internet connection so that all of the above can be accomplished
Beyond these, employers often are indifferent to where the work is being completed from. An exception would be employees who do need to be physically present to do their jobs, such as engineers, scientists, and teachers. Even if there is the necessity for completing jobs physically though, as long as the employee can show up when they’re needed, it generally doesn’t matter where their remote work is being completed.
Some employers also offer a mix of physical and remote work, which is usually called hybrid or blended work. The choice of how often the employee sets foot in the office can be up to the employer or the employee.
We understand the importance and many benefits of remote working here at RemotePass, but we also understand the challenges that managing remote teams poses. That’s why our global payroll and compliance platform is designed specifically to streamline hiring, onboarding, and payroll for global remote teams. Get in touch with us today to make managing your remote team a dream!