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News Philosophy Posted on Jul 06

Teleworking or telecommuting, the virtual workplace: Time to embrace the future

What is teleworking?

Teleworking is working remotely that nowadays is very easy thanks to a very prominent penetration of the Internet connectivity. In almost each corner of the world you can connect to a mobile network, most of the times 3G or 4G networks and with a fast paced evolution and developments such as smart self-driving cars there’s a boost in the raise of the next 5G network.

How does it work legally? 

If we look at the Belgian legislation, we learn that teleworking basically changes nothing compared to working in traditional offices. Except of course your working environment, everything else stays the same. You have the same rights and obligations as any other worker. For example following items will not change whether you work remotely or not:
  • Working hours
  • Training opportunities
  • Wage
  • Leave scheme
  • Sick leave / occupational accidents
So all in all a teleworker can also get a check by the Internal Service for Workplace Prevention and Protection to see if the health and safety of the employee is guaranteed. As a telecommuter you can even ask a visit of the Service yourself to see if everything is in order.

Teleworking in Belgium

Over the last 20 years, the percentage of homeworkers has increased from 4,6% to 12,2%. With highly educated people this percentage even increases up to almost one-fourth of the active working population. What also stands out is that the public sector is a precursor here. The main groups are represented by managers, intellectual, scientific and artistic professions and technicians.

Teleworking in the US

Not only in Belgium people start to see the advantages of telecommuting. Statistics of GlobalWorkAnalytics.com show that the proportion of non-self-employed people who worked regularly at home has increased by 103% since 2005. 3.7 million Americans (2,8% of the working population) worked at least half of the time at home in 2016.

‘Workable work’, a trend that will shape the future

Kristof Van Der Stadt (Chief Editor Data News): “The youngest generation of IT people simply does not want to be in daily traffic jams to and from Brussels or Antwerp. That same generation no longer demands teleworking or flexible hours but assumes it’s a standard.” – Data News/21 april 2017

Apps make it possible

Thanks to the constant progressive evolution in app development and our communication facilities telecommuting becomes very easy and manageable. Apps and tools to collaborate such as Skype make it possible that everyone can interact with each other or even in team. Also the rise of the many platforms to share data and documents such as Box or Confluence prove the remote co-working style is becoming somewhat popular.

Tips for efficient and pleasant teleworking

Teleworking or telecommuting means no waste of time in traffic jams, higher productivity, the work-life balance improves and overall, employees are more satisfied. Teleworking sounds very attractive buut it can sometimes be difficult to find a routine. A few tips:
  • Create an enjoyable workplace
Professionalize your home office as you would like to set up your workplace at a real office. Provide an inspirational place preferably a fixed space that only serves to work. This avoids distractions elsewhere in your home.
  • Establish a clear boundary between private and work atmosphere
Teleworking means the boundaries fade between household tasks and professional work. Telecommuting can facilitate grocery shopping during the calm hours and avoid the rush hours, it’s best to properly plan this ahead. Otherwise you can end up working late hours all the time to get the job done. Proper planning is key.
  • Alternate your surrounds from time to time
Nowadays there are places enough with free wifi. Increase your creativity by changing the environment by for example working an hour in the local coffee shop.
  • Don’t forget to have a decent breakfast and dress up as you would go out
Physical actions enforce the mentality. This has been proven in many studies but it’s important here to emphasize again. Mentally you are making a difference by not hanging around in your PJs and immediately start working. Prepare for your working day by taking the time for a good breakfast and dress yourself as you would go to office.
  • Make good arrangements with family, friends and/or roommates
It’s often tempting for people to contact you just because you’re at home. Best thing is to make it clear straight away what is doable for you and what is not. When you are working or when you can take a break. Unexpected distractions or pauses will extend your working time and interfere with your scheme.
  • Follow the structure like any other office
A good and widespread advice is to maintain some of the day-to-day time schedules of office hours. Work in blocks of 1 to 2 hours, take a break and continue work again. Take the time to have lunch or even better go out for lunch to meet someone.

Working at PegusApps

Also PegusApps follows this trend. Just read one of our previous blog articles (Copywriting for PegusApps). Happy co-workers are better co-workers. Why waste time and costly energy? It characterizes PegusApps.