Remote work has seen a surge and fall unlike most anything else. COVID-19 put the world into a state it had never seen before, requiring radical change. Lockdowns, remote work, social isolation, these became essential terms for the average citizen across multiple nations. As the years passed most were more than happy to see those times pass.
Lockdowns, for example, have become a triggering term for many. There are lots of things citizens can do for the safety of their nation, but lockdowns are now a touchy term. Although not all side effects of COVID are seen as negatively. Digital services in particular have become an incredible practical side effect. Telehealth, for example, is now incredibly popular and practical.
The Rise of Remote Work
Remote work at large, across all industries, is something that’s here to stay. By 2025, 22% of the entire workforce is predicted to be remote. This comes as no surprise for the many remote workers of today. Countless testimonies of the life changing force that is remote work have made it a popular choice. Remote workers overall report being 22% happier, as well as 30% more productive.
Looking at this, on top of the reduced costs of commuting, make it hard to see any downsides. Although naturally, remote work is not a perfect system. On top of any issues around technology and general accessibility, remote workers are very prone to burnout. 75% of all remote workers experience some form of stress and burnout at work.
The reasons for this are very diverse, 43% of remote workers report working more than 40 hours for example. This seems to come as a consequence of how hard it is to disconnect from virtual work. Time feels meaningless and endless when it’s spent working at a home computer. Simultaneously, distractions are very common and taxing for the average remote worker.
Remote Work Demands Better Solutions
These seem like hard problems to solve. There are temporary tips to the trade, things like taking lunch away from one’s computer. Yet this serves as more of a refresher than an actual solution to the issue. One solution that looks more centrally at the route is time tracking. Interestingly, a detailed log of what an employee does serves to fix many of the issues above.
Time feeling endless, for example, becomes less of an issue with time tracking. Suddenly there’s a log of what was physically done and a description of how time was spent. This also helps to bring order and ensure that breaks are being properly taken. It’s easy for remote workers to breeze through breaks, but time tracking reminds them that they’re available.
Employees being distracted is also easy to alleviate with time tracking. Suddenly there’s accountability for the minutes or hours spent doing nothing, checking email. And even more importantly there’s a log of potentially useless meetings or activities. Workers can more accurately articulate problems with the job while also being held accountable.
There’s lots of ways to track time as an employer. From the most non-intrusive like self-logs to something more robust like facial recognition. Each has its ups and downs, although it seems the industry is tending towards more modern solutions. Physical timesheets are simply too prone to human error and take up man hours. Facial recognition works by instead using AI to keep track of all an employee does. Regardless, remote work is imperfect, and time tracking starts to address some of the key issues of it.