Remote Work is Reshaping the Workforce

Diversity in the workforce has been a growing area of focus for companies. After COVID-19, the way companies hire and function dramatically shifted. For some, this shift has been a blessing in disguise.

Remote Work Removes Location Boundaries

Hiring practices play a significant role in diversity and inclusion efforts for a company. Depending on how the company hires, they may be vulnerable to an unconscious hiring bias. Who do they have looking at resumes? How do they decide to move a candidate forward? How are other factors taken into account when deciding to move a candidate forward? Depending on these answers, there could barriers for talented diverse candidates.

The best way a company can diversify their workforce is by diversifying their recruitment channels.  After 2020, the way companies recruit and hire candidates changed forever. Technology became critical for the interview and selection process. Additionally, the shift towards remote work widened candidate pools beyond geographic restrictions.

Still, keep in mind, most companies may need candidates within the same time zone as them. Even with this factor put in place, there are still many states that share times zones.

Having a Diverse Workforce Pays Off

Companies that have a highly diverse workforce are achieving better business results. In a McKinsey study, researchers found that gender-diverse companies perform 15% better than those who lack gender-diversity. Another key finding showed that ethnically diverse companies perform 35% better. Not only does diversity yield better business results, it also forces companies to re-examine their policies for inclusivity.

Companies with a diverse workforce are more likely to understand challenges faced by people from all different backgrounds. This leads to changes in HR protocols, workplace practices, culture changes, etc. If the company listens and adapts to employees’ needs, a diverse workforce will ensure an inclusive workplace.

Working Remotely Brings New Opportunities

When a company embraces remote work, they open themselves up to broader candidate pool. Without remote work options, employers are missing out on talented professionals who prefer to – or can only – work from home. These candidates deserve an equal opportunity to grow in their careers.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 4 U.S. adults live with a disability that impacts major life activities. The most common being, mobility. Mobile disability impacts 1 in 7 Americans. Remote work removes this barrier.

More now than ever, parents are opting to stay home instead of paying for childcare. Not only to save money, but to be closer to their kids during their formative years. A study from Pew Research found that stay-at-home moms and dads now account for almost 1 in 5 U.S. parents. The study also found that 29% of stay-at-home moms have a college degree. For stay-at-home dads, about a quarter of them have college degrees. Remote work gives these parents the ability to have their preferred home and work life balance.

Final Thoughts

We are aware that not all companies have the option to implement remote work options. There are a lot of jobs that can only be done in person. Regardless, there are still thousands of jobs that can be done remotely. With the increase use of technology, it is safe to assume that the number of remote jobs will only be increasing in the future.

When looking at increasing diversity and inclusion, the shift in the way we work after 2020 showed us how technology can add to this initiative. With a dramatic increase in remote work, companies have opened doors to their most diverse candidate pool yet. Locations are no longer a boundary and workplace accommodations can be tackled with remote options.