During lockdown, many businesses and have been running remotely with employees working from home.
While it hasn’t been an easy transition for everyone, some companies may be considering continuing to operate remotely to a degree. It may be because lockdown is still in effect, safety might be a concern, or that working this way has been successful so far.
But the unexpected push to working from home when lockdown started and subsequent improvisations and adjustments aren’t necessarily a true reflection of the experience of running a business remotely. So, is this a suitable option for your business?
For those deciding what to do, we consider the advantages of operating this way. Remote working is not new, and countless businesses, entrepreneurs, startups, and freelancers agree on its benefits.
Considerations For Your Travel Business
As we know, working remotely is not for everyone.
Some people thrive in the office setting, where they can instantly connect with teammates to bounce ideas off one another.
Others are more productive because they can separate their personal and workspace by going to the office.
You also have to consider whether everyone has the correct setup at home. Do they have the right technology and equipment to support productivity, and is it actually viable given their personal and household circumstances?
When deciding whether your team is going to go forward with remote work, you need to assess these factors on an individual as well as collective team basis. It’s always best to get input from everyone, as this will reflect in their productivity and commitment to work and your travel business.
It also means that you can address any barriers or concerns about working this way during the conversations you have, to create a more inclusive environment.
Benefits Of Running A Business Remotely
1. Support More Efficient Operations With Technology
Since lockdown began, you have no doubt adopted new technologies to better support how your travel business goes about processes. Communication, operations, and administration systems might have needed an overhaul to allow the distributed team to continue working effectively. And this is a good thing!
Technology can make your business more resilient. It streamlines processes to improve business efficiency, provides useful automation, and produces data that can make for more informed business decisions.
The immediate effect of using technology is to better meet the market in the current circumstances. For example, implementing technology to support the shift to cashless or contactless payments can give travelers better peace of mind when interacting with your business.
In looking to the future, it can help your travel company be more agile and gain an edge over competitors.
Running a business remotely can, therefore, give it a welcome push towards exploring the technology which will see to your longevity in the industry.
2. Build A Team Of Strong Communicators
Operating a distributed workforce calls for regular and high-quality communication to be a priority.
When everyone is in the office, it’s easy to hang onto information until a meeting or until you see the person in passing. Take that away, and you need to regularly check in and set the precedent for over-communicating.
The answer is to schedule regular team and individual calls that allow everyone to share what is happening on their side of the business. You will quickly find that everyone becomes great communicators, and information is shared timely.
3. Able To Hire A Diverse Team
When geographical constraints are removed, you have more freedom in hiring and can diversify. Your team can consist of people from anywhere in the world, provided the role allows them to work online.
Research presents a strong business case for a diverse workforce, highlighting that it improves business success through better innovation and performance. Keep in mind though that location is only one facet of diversity. To really diversify, you need to consider race, gender, sexual orientation, age, and physical abilities, among others.
4. Employee Location Is No Longer An Issue
Inevitably, someone on the team lives further away from the office and has a longer commute than others. Removing the commute can give them more meaningful personal time, as well as help to reduce stress.
There’s also the person who would love to travel while working. In this case, keeping the job they love while exploring new horizons in their own time is considered a big perk.
Distributed working supports both of these, giving you and your team the freedom to work from a location of choice.
5. Enjoy A More Flexible Schedule
Autonomy is another perk of running a business remotely. After all, it’s not possible to say that everyone works their best from 9 to 5.
Where it makes sense to do so, you and the team can enjoy a more flexible schedule working remotely or from home. That said, it is important to set productivity goals and lay down the expectations for everyone with regards to being online and being available.
However, once they are aware of what is required of them, the added flexibility of not having to commute to an office and work within a specific time frame can result in better productivity according to research.
6. You Can Improve Cash Flow
Rent, a mortgage, or utilities such as electricity, water, and general supplies, add up in the long-term. Having fewer or no people in the office means you can downsize or even stop paying for space completely to save on overheads.
This can have a positive effect on your cash flow at a time when it’s crucial for your travel business to be as careful as possible with spending.
Deciding on whether or not it makes sense to run your travel business remotely will depend on your particular circumstances. There are many benefits to it, provided that your team is committed to success and able to carry out their job efficiently outside of the office.
After that, it’s up to you to implement the right technology and put systems in place to support the change.