Telecommuting and Millennials — This Makes Sense!
In today’s fast paced, modern world, many millennial’s desire to have freedom while working. One of the most cherished “perks” is the ability to telecommute– working from home and not going to the office every day. However, some companies fail to “get it.”
We recently had an individual call our office and seek some advice regarding a job offer he received. This individual had worked as a contract employee for the firm for over 8 months. He could telecommute 3 days a week, only having to go into the office 2 days a week. This schedule worked well with his family child care responsibilities.
The company offered this individual a full-time position. The benefits were very, very robust and the pay was excellent. However, the “binding constraint” on the deal was that the company required all new hires to work in the office for 12 months before they would consider telecommunication privileges. Sadly, this became a deal breaker!
The individual offered to return his 401K, the 21 days of Personal Time Off (PTO) and the parking privileges he was offered, if he could be allowed to telecommute the 3 days a week, he had grown accustomed to. The hiring manager had to “seek senior management approval” for this request! The reason, “We have never done this before, and it goes against company policy!” What is even more ironic is this individual had “overachieved” all his goals and objectives defined for him, working as a contract employee!
Carefully rethink “old and existing” policies that may be counter productive to millennials today. Why can employees NOT telecommute? Why do you have to SEE everyone, especially if they are achieving and exceeding specified goals? Don’t make this tougher than it is—especially if you are having difficulty hiring and retaining productive employees. Academic research shows that telecommuting employees are actually more productive than in office employees. Instead of saying NO, find a suitable way to say YES!