Many companies are announcing plans to let employees work remotely permanently.
And even if your employer hasn’t made such a pledge, making the case to work remotely might be easier now that we’ve been forced to do it for so long.
But before packing up your belongings in search of a new zip code, there are some things to take into consideration.
Hone your pitch
When preparing your pitch to work remotely full-time, make sure to have specific examples of your work performance over the past eight months — like times when you’ve exceeded goals, come up with innovative solutions or helped with team building — and the impact you’ve had on the company.
Note any advantages that your location might have. For instance, maybe you could fill a hole in the Midwest where your company lacks representation, or you could provide more coverage throughout the day by living in a different time zone.
Trust plays a big factor when it comes to letting employees work remotely, noted Hibob CEO and co-founder Ronni Zehavi. So be clear with your boss about how you plan to communicate and execute with leaders and team members while you’re not physically in the office.
Moving? Ask about salary changes
Relocating can affect your salary and benefits at some companies, so you’ll need to ask about any possible changes.
“The compensation question is the million-dollar question,” said Paul Wolfe, head of global human resources for employment website Indeed.
Some employers plan to base compensation on location, which means employees moving from a high-cost-of-living area to a less expensive one could see their salaries reduced.
Workers moving out of cities like San Francisco, New York City or San Jose, California, could see a 10% to 25% pay cut on average, according to research from Glassdoor.
For instance, employees bidding farewell to San Jose face the highest average percentage drop in salary of 24.6%. For New Yorker City workers, it’s almost 10%.
But some companies are leaving pay intact — no matter where their workers are. Last month, Reddit said most employees could work from anywhere and not have their pay adjusted.
…and consider the tax implications
Moving can also affect the amount of income taxes you pay.
If your dream has always been to live in New York City, be prepared for some pretty hefty city, state and federal taxes to be taken out of your paycheck. But if warm weather is more your scene, Florida doesn’t have an income tax.
“Employees really need to do their homework and understand how their take-home pay will be impacted by taxes,” said Wolfe.
Look at other job prospects
Moving away from your company headquarters to live a life in the mountains sounds peaceful. But what happens if you get laid off one day? Consider what your job prospects might be in your new market.
Even if you plan to stay where you are, you’ll need to consider that your next employer might not be on board with remote work.
“Just because you work remotely now, doesn’t mean the next job will be remote,” said Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor’s chief economist.
Don’t let it hurt your long term career prospects
If most of your company will be returning to the office and you’d be one of the few remote team members, that can hurt your long-term career growth.
“If you are the only one remote, without question you will be at a disadvantage,” said Chamberlain.
That’s why it’s important to set very clear plans on how you will keep your manager informed of your progress and be proactive about communication.
On top of that, you should plan to return to the office at least a few times every year.
“You have to have face time to build personal and emotional relationships with teams, if you don’t do that, they wont work as well,” said Chamberlain.