Six reasons travel homeworkers show a steady rise in happiness

In a recent Travel Bulletin article, it was reported that Co-operative Travel homeworkers – their Personal Travel Agents – are at a five-year happiness high, and that their half-year sales are up, too, despite a challenging climate.

The survey asked the travel homeworkers about job satisfaction, the results being 97% of the agents stating they were ‘very happy’ or ‘happy’ when they sat at their desk in the morning. They also reported a positive 96% of satisfaction in how supported they feel in the areas of admin, and customer-care backing from central teams.

As a travel recruitment homeworker myself I think it is the best thing I have ever done. As a natural hard worker, it’s great to get my head down and work the hours I need to hit my targets. Due to the extra hours I work by not commuting into an office and having less distraction, my performance is a lot higher than previous jobs. I like the flexibility that Progressive Travel Recruitment’s director James Roberts gives, too. He is forward-thinking and will allow us to work from pretty much anywhere, showing trust in his staff. I would say the only down side is knowing when to switch off from work, which I am still trying to master.

Homeworking isn’t for everyone and it takes the right individual to be able to do it – and the right companies to manage it, too – but for me it certainly works.

Six reasons travel homeworkers are showing a steady rise in happiness:

Growth of homeworking

In an average month, we receive between 5-7 positions for travel homeworkers in the business travel sector, which isn’t a great deal, but it is growing. They are always easy to place – there’s a lot of desire among candidates for homeworking travel jobs. The steady growth in the number of business travel homeworkers gives fellow homeworkers a feeling of security and a sense that it is increasingly a viable option for business travel jobs.

The flexible approach

In the current candidate-driven market, companies are having to offer homeworking to get the best candidates – it’s becoming a common perk. Workers love the flexibility of working at least part of the week from home, where they can manage their time more freely as long as the work gets done. Flexibility when you have a young family can be vital, for example to allow you to do a proper job but also fit in nursery and school runs. Although in some roles, for example travel sales jobs, the strict 9-5 is pretty essential, even from home – although many companies also answer phones in the evening these days, too. Many businesses are becoming more forward-thinking and realising that homeworkers save them costs, too.

More productive days

Companies and homeworkers are starting to realise that those that work from home offer more proactive hours than many office workers, partly as they save time commuting, and partly because they are often more focused. Homeworkers also often want to prove that they can be effective and trusted workers. Employee feedback I get from homeworkers is mostly that you become more productive, getting more work done in your day as you have fewer distractions than in an office. But homeworking is not for everyone as I know from speaking to candidates that have tried it and decided that they prefer to be in an office environment to keep themselves motivated.

Wide variety of travel jobs

Over recent years I’ve noticed that the variety of jobs offered as homeworking roles, or flexible office and homeworking, has widened. The majority are account manager travel jobs and travel sales roles as these candidates don’t need to be in the office on a daily basis as they are often on the road attending sales meetings and client reviews. The more these candidates are out of the office, the better for the business. But we also have a huge increase in the number of Senior Business Travel Consultant roles that are based at home. I think this is due to the candidate-driven market, where good candidates can call the shots and opt for a homeworking solution.

Cost savings

Commuting costs can be astronomical in places like London, particularly if you have to travel in by train from outside the city. Homeworking can save hundreds of pounds worth of commuting costs. Businesses can also save costs by using smaller central office space if many workers are at home.

A desirable way to work

When speaking to candidates, as I do every day, I’ve noticed an increase in people desiring a travel homeworking role, and particularly a steady increase of business travel homeworkers. It’s a forward-thinking way to work, giving people a sense of true responsibility and independence. With access to the internet you can pretty much work from anywhere. My travel recruitment colleagues have had the opportunity to work from South Africa, Portugal and Ibiza this year. You have flexible working hours to attend appointments, do school runs and work generally. You are generally more productive, as I’ve already said, above, but you do have to avoid over working – and know when to switch off as your home is your office.

For employers, if they choose the right travel homeworkers, it can be a win-win. There is, of course, the need to manage employees from afar, which has to be done carefully. They will need to monitor progress, but should avoid micro-managing their offsite workers. It can take time to get the system working effectively.

 

Connect with me on LinkedIn if you’re interested in hiring travel homeworkers.

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