Thanks to cloud and smartphone technologies, the workplace is now shifting from the traditional brick and motor setup to remote working. The UK, for example, has seen a sharp increase in remote workers and has over 2 million active freelancers, this number is expected to rise in 2019 and beyond.
However, just like anything else out there, online work comes with its fair share of pros and cons.
Pros of remote work
Flexibility – Let’s face it, everyone on the 9 to 5 grind hates the fact that it's mandatory to show up at the same building every day, especially after dealing with traffic jams or crowded trains as part of a daily commute.
Online contractors, on the other hand, get to work from anywhere – the couch, local coffee shop or on a plane. This kind of flexibility is what attracts most people to freelancing.
Save money – The average Brit spends £146, every month, getting to and from work. That’s a whopping £1,752 a year. These figures are even higher in London, where the average person spends £305 on transport per month. Not only that, but you might also need to eat lunch or catch happy hour after work. And the only way to slash this costs is working remotely.
Work/life balance – When working online, you get more time to yourself. This extra time can be used to exercise, start a family or add a new skill to your portfolio. It also means that you can travel the world without having to take a break from work. And this makes most freelancers very productive.
Cons of remote work
The biggest drawback of remote work is that you’ll have limited interaction with workmates. And that opens the doors to misinterpretation due to a lack of physical communication.
Another thing you might have to deal with is irregular working hours. Sometimes, freelancers have to work on weekends – thanks to the communication gap and time management issues that plague remote work. But with services such as video conferencing and work management software getting better every day, this issue might be a thing of the past.