Working from home, once a rare workplace benefit, has now become common across a wide variety of industries. It appears that the COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed how we work.
- In 2019, 5.4% of employees throughout the Eurozone usually worked from home
- During the pandemic, this figure rose to almost 40%
- According to the OECD, “… more widespread telework in the longer-run has the potential to improve productivity and a range of other economic and social indicators (worker well-being, gender equality, regional inequalities, housing, emissions).”
It’s clear that remote working is here to stay. This article examines the widespread benefits of remote working before exploring how collections teams can work from home productively, efficiently, and effectively going forward.
The benefits of remote working
Working from home isn’t just a privilege because you can ditch the suits for sweatpants. In fact, there are multiple reasons why employees enjoy working from home.
- Better work-life balance
According to 2019 research, the average European spent 25 minutes commuting to work—so that’s almost an hour per day. When you add that up, that’s just under 25 hours per week, which is 1,300 hours per year. To put this into perspective, 1,300 hours is the equivalent of 54 days.
Working from home means that employees can eliminate the time they waste every day commuting to and from the office. With 54 extra days per year, they can spend more time with their family, seeing friends, or simply doing whatever it is that they love. It’s not surprising that only 8% of parents would like to see a return to on-site work after the pandemic is over.
Having a better work-life balance means that employees will feel more refreshed, recharged, and ready to take on every single day. Work will simply be one part of their life—it won’t be their entire life. And that’s without mentioning the obvious mental health benefits of having more time to do what you love (and less time spent commuting to and from work).
- Increased productivity
McKinsey analysis reports that widespread working from home has positively impacted overall productivity. When you think about it, this is hardly surprising. It has been suggested that people in offices only work productively for 3 hours or so each day. The rest of the time, they might be chatting to colleagues, grabbing a coffee, heading in and out of meetings, and so on.
But when employees work from home, they aren’t surrounded by these distractions. They can get on with their work without feeling the need to socialise, play table tennis, or have a catch-up with a colleague over a coffee.
- Greater flexibility
Working from home also provides employees with far greater flexibility. If they have a doctor’s appointment or need to take their car in to be fixed, they can easily do so. To make up for the lost time, they can simply begin work earlier—or finish later—than usual. That’s why the majority of workers crave flexibility in their working model once the pandemic is over.
- Reduced costs
Remote working isn’t just beneficial for employees. Companies can also use the opportunity to downsize their office space, reducing the amount of rent that they pay. This also means lower utilities bills, less money spent on cleaning services, and might even have certain tax-related benefits. In fact, it has even been suggested that companies save $22,000 per year (€18,730) for each previously on-site employee that starts working from home.
- A recruitment secret weapon
Flexibility is now the second most important factor (behind compensation) when it comes to job satisfaction. Most of today’s top talent will no longer accept long hours being chained to their desk—especially when the rest of the world is enjoying the benefits of remote working. This means that flexibility can become a key differentiator when potential recruits are deciding whether to work for your company or for a competitor.
How can collections software power remote working?
Your collections software is the beating heart of your collections team. It’s where you devise outreach messages, analyse key performance data, dig into each customer’s individual details, and manage your entire approach. So if you want to embrace remote working, your collections software needs to have the following features.
Cloud-native collections software, unlike on-premise alternatives, can be accessed from anywhere and at any time. No longer do employees need to be at their desks to access/share key pieces of data or to handle their day-to-day duties. Instead, they can simply log into their collections software remotely—provided they have a computer and access to WiFi/data.
2. No-code functionality
No-code functionality means every single employee can craft new landing pages and dunning messages themselves. They don’t need to ask IT for help or consult their manager when they run into an issue. The process is so simple that agents can create key collections materials within minutes, wherever they’re located.
3. All-in-one functionality
With all-in-one collections software, everything agents need is in one single place. They don’t have to waste time and energy searching for different data, in different files, on different pieces of software. Everything they need to do their job effectively is right in front of them. Because it is built the way it is as a layer on top of any existing infrastructure, collections teams no longer need to meet in-person just to get the information they need. They are all connected using one platform.
4. Omnichannel drag-and-drop strategy builder
Your strategy plays a critical role in determining your collections success. Some segments will respond better to straightforward messaging delivered infrequently via email. Others, however, will be more likely to repay in full if you send them friendly, frequent reminders across a variety of channels.
The best collections software allows agents to easily craft a range of omnichannel content and strategies with a simple drag-and-dropfeature. They don’t need to ask anybody else for help. Instead, they can add new ideas to their content and build various ideal strategies in a matter of minutes.
5. Data security
You must work with SaaS vendors that put data security at the heart of everything they do. It’s crucial that you keep your customers’ data safe and secure when employees are working remotely. Make sure you ask potential vendors key data security questions before signing up for their tool. With receeve cloud-native build structure, you won’t be held back by disruptive updates and changes to regulations.
Embrace the remote working trend
Remote working is one of the only positives to have come out of the COVID-19 pandemic. It makes people happier, gives them more time to do what they love, and increases their productivity. Organisations can cut costs and attract talent—so it’s a win-win for both sides.
However, if you want to embrace remote working, you need to implement the right collections solution. It should be cloud-native, provide agents with various tools required in an all-in-one platform, and embrace the latest data security best practices.
To learn how receeve offers all this and more, book a demo today.