Telecommuting and Motivation

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My company has offered me a chance to work remote. Should I telecommute?

Personal Reflection

            With advanced technology in video conferencing, mobile devices, and internet connections, telecommuting jobs have become common. Most people covet telecommuting jobs because they offer greater work-life balance. As an employee, I consider motivation to be critical in delivering the needed organizational output and achieving the required competitive advantage. One of the benefits of telecommuting jobs is that they offer work-life balance, which for me is a motivational factor since I am freed from time and place constraints (Kratz, 2017). Currently, I work for FedEx as a senior software engineer responsible for designing and developing software programs to ensure enhanced efficiency in organizational operations and meeting the ever-changing needs of the customers. When employees are motivated, they show commitment, increase productivity, decrease turnover, and ensure mutual relationship with organizational management. With telecommuting experience I gained at FedEx, I understood that knowing that telecommuting is good for me is not just about having the right job; it requires the right skills.

Motivational Factors

            For many organizations, it is easy and cheap to solve some of the retention challenges. Most employees do not leave for financial motivational factors but for personal dissatisfaction, inflexible jobs, and poor leadership structures. I consider the structure of the work to be a motivational factor especially with my nature of my flexible job at FedEx. Some works are inherently motivational and require creativity, imagination, and high energy levels. Software development does not require much communication, negotiations, and interactions and for efficiency and effectiveness of the development process, there is need to reduce the level of interaction with others. In addition, the job can be frustrating, which makes it critical to have better work-life balance. Such practices are critical and can be enhanced through offering extra autonomy and flexibility (Sims, Oppler & Holmes, 2012). There are different ways to enhance employee work environment, which in turns benefit their work-life balance. The current work-life balance offered to me at FedEx has great work-life balance. As a result, my overall job satisfaction, productivity, and motivation has increased in the recent years.

            As a software developer, I enjoy flexible jobs. Flexibility at work assists in keeping my work on the track and highly motivated. Flex-time ensures adequate accommodation of family schedules, vocational days, and work-from-home options (Sims, Oppler & Holmes, 2012). These activities have become powerful incentive tools used to motivate employees. Although most workers are increasingly considering work-from-home to be the best, most of them work in relative anonymity. Recognizing employees regardless of the nature of their jobs is a motivational factor. I believe that to motivate employees, the management should consider recognizing employees for their accomplishments including completion of the major projects, reaching the pre-defined goals, and provision of excellent customer services.  

Benefits of Telecommuting

            Telecommuting is an alternative work arrangement that enable workers to carry out their tasks conveniently from home or any other place outside of the standard office. Telecommuting has different dimensions: a full-time arrangement in which employees work remotely at all time or part-time that enables employees to work certain days within a work (Pham, 2017). Through telecommuting, instead of reporting to an office, employees use computer connections and telephones in contacting the supervisors. Based on the analysis, telecommuting offers significant benefits to both the employees and employers. For the employees, it offers greater freedom in terms of working hours and environment. With telecommuting, employees save more and enjoy increased independence. The practice does not require formal attire, commuting expenses, and parking fees, thus enabling employees to save more. Through telecommuting, employees negate the need for constant reminders and direct supervision from the supervisors. As a result, employees are offered less stringent working conditions and consequently become freer and more independent.

            Flexibility allows employees develop their skills and embrace other motivational factors such learning and development and opportunity to research and explore new market trends. Employee are highly motivated when they are satisfied and fulfilled in their job positions. Telecommuting alleviates stress associated with office atmosphere (Pham, 2017). Flexible work options within the organization assists to reduce employee turnover. Generally, the cost of hiring and training new employees is high. Thus, many companies are keen on improving their hiring processes and keeping their employees. Offering workers flexible and telecommuting jobs might assist to enhance their motivational levels and organizational retention ability.  

Theoretical Concepts of Motivation

            To analyze my motivational factors, I will consider two theories: Maslow’s Need Hierarchy Theory and Herzberg’s Motivation-Hygiene Theory. Maslow’s theory is based on human needs, which are classified hierarchically from the lowest to the highest (Chand, 2014). Psychological needs are basic for survival and maintenance of human life. For me to consider other motivational factors, I first must ensure that the job will meet my basic needs including food, clothing, and shelter. Once satisfied, they no longer become motivational factors for a job. Safety needs come second. As a motivation factor, the job should offer economic security and protection from any physical danger. Social needs are critical. Each human being is sociable. Thus, the offered job should meet the social needs of the employees through offering social interactions, a sense of belonging, and companionship. Although telecommuting jobs offer flexible employment practices, they meet less social needs of the employees. Esteem needs are important to meet employee motivational factors. Each employee requires self-esteem and self-respect. These needs should reflect confidence, achievement, independence, and competence (Chand, 2014). I am motivated by a sense of fulfilment and self-esteem, which are important in enhancing self-confidence and ensuring full exploitation of my potentials. According to Maslow’s theory, self-actualization needs represent the final motivational factor. The job needs to offer me the opportunity to transform perception into reality.

            Herzberg motivation theory is also two-factor theory. According to Herzberg, motivational factors cause job satisfaction while hygiene factors cause dissatisfaction of employees. I consider hygiene factors such as low salaries, poor working conditions, safety, security, and work environment contribute to unhappiness and job dissatisfaction among the employees (Chand, 2014). Herzberg noted that satisfaction should be based on the need for personal growth among the employees. I need a job that gives me the opportunity to reach great achievement, high level of recognition, proper job structure, responsibility, and career advancement.

Motivating Telecommuting Employees

            There are many ways used to motivate telecommuting employees including regular communication, ensuring that the line of communication is open, and implementation of personalized digital employee recognition programs. In the recent years, studies have established that employee recognition plays significant role in motivating remote workers to strive towards meeting organizational needs. Financial motivation is also important to increase organizational productivity, employee retention, happiness, and enhanced morale (Kratz, 2017). To enhance employee motivation through telecommuting, the business should consider setting and communicating clear expectations on telecommuting, introduce easy-to-use method of measuring performance, understand that technology changes from time to time, and ensuring that remotely working employees are involved in the decision-making process. Considering the benefits associated with telecommuting, I will consider working for FedEx as a software engineer. Such opportunity will enable me to develop my skills and have a better work-life balance.

References

Chand, S. (2014, April 15). Motivation Theories: Top 8 Theories of Motivation. Retrieved from http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/motivation/motivation-theories-top-8-theories-of-motivation-explained/35377

Kratz, G. (2017, July 20). 5 Benefits of Telecommuting For Employers and Employees. Retrieved from https://www.workflexibility.org/5-benefits-of-telecommuting-for-employers-and-employees/

Pham, H. H. (2017). Determinants of Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment of Employees Within the Telecommuting Environment in Vietnam. SSRN Electronic Journal, 7(11), 1511-1520.

Sims, D. E., Oppler, E. S., & Holmes, R. (2012). Engaging and Retaining Government Employees: Is Telecommuting the Answer? PsycEXTRA Dataset, 5(3), 105-122.

September 04, 2023
Category:

Life

Subcategory:

Work Management

Subject area:

Motivation Employee

Number of pages

5

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1264

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