Asynchronous Work Gaining Traction
Imagine working full-time from anywhere at any time.
Seems too good to be true? Or maybe it sounds impractical?
As companies explore different schedules and approaches to boost productivity, remote and hybrid work models have dominated the conversation.
Lately, though, asynchronous work is being popularized thanks to companies like Gumroad and Automattic, which builds WordPress.
What Is Asynchronous Work?
Asynchronous work allows employees to decide the hours they want to work and the location (including time zone) that they want to work from. As long as these employees deliver what is expected of them and hit their goals, that’s all that counts.
Matt Mullenweg, Automattic’s founder & CEO, shared with the Wall Street Journal how his company functions in an asynchronous environment. Below we paraphrase portions of the interview, along with considerations if your company is evaluating asynchronous work.
In-person conversations and even Zoom meetings become problematic when employees have conflicting schedules. That’s why asynchronous work requires a level of competency in written communication. Automattic offers writing workshops for employees to assist in this regard.
Finding The Best Talent
Removing geographic boundaries and time-zone constraints from job searches opens up companies to many more thousands of job candidates. Also, the freedom for employees to choose how and where they work is a huge selling point. It also helps employee retention. Automattic’s voluntary churn rate was just 7.6% in the past year.
Work Without Compromise
Most jobs require tradeoffs. It’s rare for jobs to check every box. Removing geography and standard work hours from the equation allows employees to design their own work life in ways that never existed previously. Commute time, office environment, and standard office hours no longer have to interfere with employees’ personal lives.
Productivity Around The Clock
With employees working in multiple time zones, companies theoretically can run 24/7. Employees in the Western Hemisphere can pick up a project where a team in the Eastern Hemisphere leaves off. This cycle can boost productivity and cut down on idle time. Automattic has nearly 2,000 employees across 97 countries.
Interested in learning more about this topic? Check out this data on workers’ preference for flex hours.