6 Reasons Why Telecommuting Is Beneficial For People With Disabilities
Globalization of technology has brought about a sea of change in the manner in which companies and even smaller businesses operate. Today, it’s possible for a company to have employees belonging to a single department, located in different parts of the country or even the world. The fact that there are a number of avenues of quick communication between team members has opened up a world of opportunities for people who aren’t able to commute to work, for different reasons.
Telecommuting is the novel way of organizing work in such a way that it revolutionizes the 2 fundamentals of the work structure – time and space. This option to work from home plays a crucial role in the overall process of professional activation of individuals with disabilities. It’s one way of limiting the problems that are associated with commuting to a workplace.
The Distinct Benefits
Today a number of employers, including some of the largest corporations in the world, are giving their employees this option and are reaping the benefits of it. What is probably even more important is that it is a very beneficial option for people with disabilities. Take a look at some of the reasons why:
#1. Sense of Independence & Freedom
A number of surveys have proved that over 80% of professionals with disabilities prefer telecommuting (at least part-time). Behind paid time off, this is the second most-wanted benefit amongst employees who have disabilities. It’s not difficult to understand why. Those with disabilities can find it very difficult to commute either using their own vehicle or via public transportation. It gives them a sense of independence and freedom which is hard to beat.
#2. Improves Productivity
When people are less stressed and physically less tired, they are able to work more efficiently. Others may not realize this, but for a disabled person, getting ready and commuting to work every single day; come rain, come shine can be a monumental task. The minute they are able to work out of home, they are less stressed and their productivity automatically increases.
#3. Encourages a Work-Life Balance
Most people with disabilities aren’t able to drive to work; this also means they end up spending a lot of time commuting to and from their workplace as they have to rely on the schedules of available transportation services. The amount of time they save by telecommuting permits people with disabilities, greater opportunities to spend time with family & to engage with others socially.
Those who have children find that they are able to attend school plays or PTA conferences without impacting their work, as they are able to adjust their work timings accordingly. Even a ½ hour commute each way, effectively translates into 6 work weeks per year just spent on the road. That time can be used in a more productive manner – either for work or to spend quality time with family.
#4. Facilitates Better Self Care
Depending on the type and level of the disability, the person may have a harrowing time commuting to work. When they get the option to work out of their home, they are able to look after themselves in a better way and this also impacts the cost of health insurance for them.
#5. Flexibility for Appointments
Different companies will have different policies related to telecommuting. While some require that the employee be present in the office for a certain number of hours, others aren’t concerned about where or when the work is being completed, as long it gets done. When a person is at home, they have the flexibility to work at any time of the day or night. This flexibility in work timings allows them to balance their needs including doctor appointments and therapy.
#6. Choice of Work
People with disabilities are more likely to hold part-time jobs; however, in no way does this mean they want only part-time employment. When they are able to find a telecommuting job, it gives them the option to look for the kind of work they really want to have. Some may even choose to take up 2 part-time jobs and fit them perfectly into their day. Since they don’t end up spending any time commuting, they are able to perform at their jobs in a much better way.
A Welcome Change
In addition to all of these factors, people with disabilities have also adapted themselves to using technology very effectively in their daily lives; some face no difficulty using different types of communication mediums and software, such as mobile hotspots, cloud storage, VOIP services, Internet-based mailrooms etc., that are used in telecommuting. Regardless of which angle you look at it from, telecommuting is greatly beneficial to people with disabilities and should be widely adapted and accepted.