New Research Suggests Many Employers Still Resist Telecommuting

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It’s green. It saves money. It improves employee morale and productivity. Telecommuting solves a lot of work-place problems. Yet despite all this, many employers still resist telecommuting. A new study released by the Telework Research Network and sponsored by Citrix Systems found:

  • Perk vs. Standard Practice – Work from home, telecommuting and flex work is still a perk versus an accepted business practice.
  • A typical workshifter is 49 years old, college educated and in a management, senior employee or professional role.
  • Over 75% of employees who work from home earn over $65,000 per year, putting them in the upper 80 percentile relative to all employees.
  • Demand Outpaces Supply – 64 million U.S. employees hold jobs that could be done at home at least part of the time, yet fewer than 3 million, 2.3% of the population, get the chance to work virtually on a regular basis.
  • 50% of all non-teleworkers are interested in working from home.
  • Will Trade Money for Freedom – 37% of non-teleworkers surveyed would take a pay cut to be able to have more independence in where and how they work.
  • Commute Time Is Not a Factor – The study found no correlation between cities with the most congestion or longest commute times and number of workshifters.
  • The San Diego Metro area has the highest concentration of people who work at home, 4.2%, while Detroit and Houston have the lowest, each with 1.8%. The New York metro area rounds out the bottom three, with 2.1%.

Kate Lister, president of the Telework Research Network sums it up when she says, “The reality is that managers simply don’t trust their employees to work untethered. That’s not going to change until companies start measuring performance based on results, rather than the number of hours someone sits at their desk. Management gurus have been telling us for decades that results-based management is the key to maximizing employee potential; and it’s true whether employees are a hundred feet or a hundred miles away.”

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