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All-Remote Benefits

On this page

On this page, we're highlighting benefits of operating an all-remote company for employers, employees, and the world.

In the video above, GitLab Director of Global People Operations Carol Teskey shares her view on the many benefits of all-remote, and the competitive advantages that come along with it.

All-Remote Advantages

Reimagining how one's day can be structured, and how that can easily vary from one 24-hour period to the next, is empowering. The freedom and flexibility that comes with all-remote enables employees to view work in an entirely new light.

Rather than forcing one to build their life about a predefined daily schedule that involves an unavoidable commute, all-remote shifts that responsibility back to the individual.

A number of studies from the likes of Google, Buffer, FlexJobs, and IWG show that driven individuals who place a high degree of value on autonomy and flexibility can experience new levels of joy and productivity in an all-remote environment.

In the GitLab Unfiltered video above, two GitLab colleagues discuss the benefits of all-remote. For those with friends and family in various locales, team members are empowered to spend time with loved ones, investing in those relationships, without the dread of counting vacation days.

An added benefit that I didn't anticipate, but have taken full advantage of, is being able to visit friends and family that are in locales that aren't necessarily close to where my home base is. Otherwise, I'd have to take paid time off (PTO) just to visit them.

I've seen friends and family in Nashville, Raleigh, Iowa, New York, Boston, and all over the west coast. It's not just visiting for a weekend. It's being there for friends, family, birthdays, baby showers, and weddings. Across the board it has been a huge benefit [of all-remote at GitLab]. - Jackie G., Manager, Marketing Programs at GitLab

For employees

  1. You have more flexibility in your daily life (for kids, parents, friends, groceries, sports, deliveries).
  2. No more time, stress, or money wasted on a commute (subway and bus fees, gas, car maintenance, tolls, etc.).
  3. It's safer. With no commute, there's no risk of getting into an accident traveling to and from work.
  4. Reduced interruption stress and increased productivity.
  5. Ability to travel to other places without taking vacation (family, fun, etc.).
  6. Freedom to relocate, be location independent, or even travel with other remote professionals.
  7. Less exposure to germs from sick coworkers.
  8. It can be easier to communicate with difficult colleagues remotely, reducing distractions from interpersonal drama or office politics.
  9. You can set up and decorate your office or workspace in whatever way works best for you.
  10. You can choose your working hours based on when you're most productive.
  11. You have the opportunity to meet and work with people from many locations around the world, widening one's view of the world and creating opportunities to learn about new cultures.
  12. Onboarding may be less stressful socially.
  13. Eating at home is better (sometimes) and cheaper.
  14. Taxes can be cheaper in some countries.
  15. Work clothes are not required.

From family time to travel plans, there are many examples and stories of how remote work has impacted the lives of GitLab team members around the world.

“The flexibility makes family life exponentially easier, which reduces stress and makes you more productive and motivated. You can’t put a dollar value on it – it’s priceless.” - Haydn, Regional Sales Director, GitLab

For your organization

Limiting your company's recruiting pipeline to a certain geographic region, or sourcing employees who are able and willing to relocate, is a competitive disadvantage.

Not only does this create a less inclusive hiring process which reaches a less diverse set of candidates, it forces your organization to compete primarily on the basis of salary.

  1. You're able to hire great people no matter where they live.
    • GitLab has a truly global footprint, with team members in 65+ countries.
  2. Employees are more productive with fewer distractions.
  3. Increased savings on office costs and compensation (due to hiring in lower-cost regions).
    • GitLab maintains a more balanced payroll than other San Francisco Bay Area colocated companies. Learn more in the Compensation Calculator section of GitLab's handbook.
    • Each function has a new hire location factor target. As an example, marketing targets < 0.72 and finance targets < 0.69. (For reference, San Francisco is 1.00)
    • We have a people group KPI for our average overall location factor to be < 0.65.
  4. All-remote naturally attracts self-motivated people.
  5. It's easier to quickly grow your company.
    • GitLab does not own/lease office space. As colocated companies scale in size, their spend related to real estate will swell. This not only encompasses office space, but related activities such as security, cleaning, remodeling, etc. It also hampers growth. Hiring too many people in too short a time span will force you to move offices in quick succession, creating massive cost and inefficiency.
  6. Employees are increasingly expecting remote work options from their employers.
  7. Companies often experience lower employee turnover and higher morale with remote work.
  8. You have fewer meetings and more focus on results and output of great work.
  9. You don't have to pay to relocate someone to join your team.
    • GitLab's recruiting department tracks cost per hire, which currently does not have a target.
  10. With employees located all over the world working asynchronously, contributions can continue even when one time zone's working day is over.
  11. There's also business continuity in the case of local disturbances or natural disasters (e.g. political or weather-related events).
  12. Greater flexibility can mean greater diversity in your organization.

For the world

In the GitLab Unfiltered video above, two GitLab colleagues discuss the benefits of living in a lower cost-of-living environment near friends, family, and community.

Research from the University of New Hampshire has found that "35% of rural counties in the United States are experiencing protracted and significant population loss." Speaking to shrinking towns across Europe, a 2016 report from the European Parliamentary Research Service notes that "younger members of society prefer to migrate to more economically vibrant regions and cities in search of better job prospects as, in most of these territories, professional opportunities remain limited and confined to specific fields (e.g. agriculture and tourism)."

We believe all-remote has the power to pause, and perhaps even reverse, these trends of depopulation.

Working remotely gives each person the autonomy to serve in a place that matters to them – a place that has shaped them – contributing significantly to the wellbeing of a population that may be at risk of losing its foundation, should talent continue to flee to the usual job centers.

  1. There's evidence that remote work can reduce the effects of urban crowding for many cities around the world. Some states and countries are even offering incentives to encourage remote work. Here are 13 examples around the world.
  2. For global companies, bringing better-paying jobs to low-cost regions has positive economic impacts and works to reverse the trends of depopulation in rural regions.

Contribute your lessons

GitLab believes that all-remote is the future of work, and remote companies have a shared responsibility to show the way for other organizations who are embracing it. If you or your company has an experience that would benefit the greater world, consider creating a merge request and adding a contribution to this page.

Return to the main all-remote page.

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