Developers have come to expect a flexible work schedule when it comes to their career. In a new report, 86 percent of respondents revealed they currently work remotely in some capacity. Thirty-three percent work from home full time while 28 percent split their time between working remotely and going into the office.
The report comes from DigitalOcean’s sixth and latest release of its Currents research series, which gathered responses from more than 4,500 developers.
“Today, it is critical that companies offer remote work flexibility, or they risk seeming behind the times. In fact, over half of respondents noted that they think less highly of a company that doesn’t offer remote work options,” Al Sene, VP of engineering at DigitalOcean, wrote in a post.
While many companies fear allowing employees to work from home could result in disengagement or isolation, 71 percent of developers working remotely find they are still able to connect to the company’s community through workplace communication tools and collaboration software. In order to connect to the larger developer community, developers often attend meetups or local events, contribute to online forums, attend developer conferences and contribute to projects on GitHub, the report found.
However, 29 percent of developers do state they feel excluded from offline team conversations or don’t feel integrated into the company’s culture.
“Of these respondents who were aware that their company had a remote-employee programs, 88 percent said they have a positive impact. This disparity highlights a valuable opportunity for companies to invest in connecting their employees,” the report states.
The report also found working remotely can positively impact a work-life balance, with 77 percent believing working remotely reduces the stress of commuting. Seventy-five percent stated working remotely gives them the ability to work wherever they want to live, and 70 percent cited it provides time to run personal errands. Other reasons included ability to balance work and passion projects, ability to care for children and/or family members, and the ability to attend family events easily. A quarter of respondents found working from home had no impact on their work-life balance while 11 percent of developers who work from home said their work-life balance actually worsens because they end up working longer hours and the expectation that they should contribute more.
Other findings of the report included: two-thirds of respondents report stress levels related to work cause them to feel burnt out or fatigued regardless of being in the office or working remotely, and remote workers rate their work-life balance only slightly higher than in-office workers.
“While remote work options have become increasingly popular and more widely accepted among developers, companies must continue to support these workers to ensure they feel included, avoid burnout, and maintain a positive work-life balance,” according to the report.