Deskless Workforce vs. Telecommuting vs. Remote Work

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Deskless Workforce vs. Telecommuting vs. Remote Work

The terms referring to different kinds of employees can be quite confusing sometimes. However, distinguishing one from the other is essential, as it can help employers decide how best to manage their workforce.

In this article, we will help you understand the difference between a deskless workforce, mobile workforce, telecommuting, and remote work, as well as highlight the things that make them unique.

Deskless Workforce vs remote work force

Deskless Workforce

As previously discussed in ‘The Impact of the Deskless Workforce in the Future of Businesses’, over 80% of the workers globally are considered part of the deskless workforce. The term refers to professionals whose jobs do not require them to sit at a desk or in front of a computer. However, despite not doing much of their work on a computer, they still require certain digital tools such as smartphones, wearables, and machinery specifically made for their industry.

The goal of businesses who employ deskless workers is to find the right devices that will enable their employees to accomplish their tasks with greater efficiency.

Telecommuting workforce


Current circumstances have forced many businesses to send their employees home, leading to the creation of a swarm of telecommuters – professionals that heavily rely on phones, chat, and email to do their jobs.

A study cited by Small Biz Genius estimated the number of telecommuters in the US to be at 4.3 million – a number that is likely to skyrocket due to current restrictions. Since telecommuters rely primarily on different IoT devices, the role of companies with this kind of workforce is to establish a user-friendly and reliable project management system and collaboration tool that will enable employees to work from anywhere in the world.

Remote Work

Remote Work

Even before the pandemic, remote work – which refers to a work arrangement that requires little to no commuting to the office for the employees – had been gaining popularity due to its many benefits. According to an article by Forbes, these benefits include an average of 35-40% increase in productivity, a 41% reduction in absenteeism, a 12% reduction in employee turnover, and a 21% increase in profitability for companies.

As enticing as these benefits might be, the challenge for companies is to make sure that remote workers feel taken care of and that they find a healthy work-life balance that will keep them from burning out.

Mobile Workforce

Mobile Workforce

Workers within the mobile workforce are those that work in various locations throughout the day instead of just working in one specific spot. An article on HR Technologist explains that the growing number of mobile workers is highly indicative of the apparent shift to mobile data, which effectively aids the “anytime, anywhere” nature of the professions that fall under this group. Although companies with a mainly mobile workforce can save on costs due to the reduced demand for dedicated workspaces, they still have to think about investing in high-end technologies that will make the management of mobile workers easy.

Caring for Non-Traditional Workers

Companies dealing with employees who work under non-traditional conditions require non-traditional methods to manage their workers more efficiently. Aside from ensuring that they maintain continuous communication with their employees, companies must also see to it that they have access to facilities that can help them attain a healthier work-life balance. For instance, companies can consider providing aid to those workers who have the option to work in coworking spaces. Coworking spaces offer numerous amenities and facilities perfect for the remote or deskless worker.

Case in point: Industrious’ Miami coworking locations are not only creatively designed to encourage productivity but also provide workers with a sense of community that can help promote social and mental well-being. Similarly, WeWorks’ different branches in New York offer different spaces including outdoor gardens and wellness rooms that can help alleviate stress and ensure quality breaks. Companies can also consider offering support to workers who would like to pursue different skills and other hobbies. Fast Company explained that doing so will not only result in an increase in productivity but will also help to boost morale, which can snowball into an overall improvement in work performance.

Whether you’re handling in-office employees or non-traditional workers such as those listed above, managing workers and ensuring that everyone stays productive remains a crucial responsibility for employers. Fortunately, there are applications like Pazo, which can ensure that this can be done in the most seamless and hassle-free way