As telecommunication tools have become more prevalent in the workplace, so too has the remote employee, and this trend does not look like it will be slowing down. According to recent studies, about 43 percent of the U.S. workforce worked remotely in 2016, and 34 percent of business leaders say they plan on around half of their full-time workforce going virtual by 2020. This trend can be attributed to employees’ increasing desires to work when and where they want, but it doesn’t end there. Studies have shown that offering virtual work options has a dramatic impact on an organization’s bottom line as well as morale, and, by extension, engagement and retention levels. But there are other reasons to consider letting an employee work remotely. First and foremost, virtual team members are more productive. A normal workplace has myriad distractions, and while casual conversations are important in building camaraderie, that time can add up. Employees are far more likely to get pulled into brainstorming sessions and long-winded meetings that waste time, whereas those who are able to work remotely get to set up their work spaces and timeframes in a way that allows them to optimize their productivity.